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Export photos only if there were edits in lightroom

cookiecutter

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Say I'm editing a batch of 1000 photos, of which 200 are rated with stars and 50 are edited. I want to select all > Export > but only want lightroom to over-write the 50 photos (originally jpgs, output also jpg). Is this possible?
 
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Say I'm editing a batch of 1000 photos, of which 200 are rated with stars and 50 are edited. I want to select all > Export > but only want lightroom to over-write the 50 photos (originally jpgs, output also jpg). Is this possible?
Why would you want LR to overwrite the original, imported file? JPEG's are lossy and each newly saved version can suffer degradation when created. And if you need to re-edit an image in the future, you will no longer have the original file. If you just create an image on exporting, and do not over-write the original, whatever you export in the future will only be a second generation copy (assuming the imported image is first generation). Is there some reason you want to over-write your imported images?

--Ken
 

cookiecutter

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This is my workflow for photos taken from phones. I will only edit them once and not re-visit them once edited (i.e. it is finalized).
I understand the degradation, which is exactly the intention of my original post - not for Lightroom to create a new copy if it has never been edited.

In addition, I also realized export is required if I only change the ratings. Is there an option to update metadata only (in realtime) without having to export again?
 
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So your workflow is
1) Take jpg photo with phone
2) import into Lrc
3) do some editing and rating in Lrc on some of the images
4) Export the images (only the changed one is what is desired) to the same folder as, and replacing, the original JPG
5) never edit these images again

What you don't state how are these images used from that point on? Do you ever look at them and if so do you use LrC or some other tool?

Here are some thoughts:
  1. I haven't tested this, but I beleive that if you export an image to the same folder as the original, that you'll get a "-2.jpg" file and it won't overlay the original. However, if you export to a different folder then use File manager to copy to the original folder you can over write the original
  2. If you do manage to over write the original, your images will look terrible in LrC. this is because the catalog still thinks it has the original image so it applies your edits before showing you the image. However the over written JPG already has those changes baked in so in essence you are double editing. Example: In LrC you increase exposure by 1 stop, then replace the original jpg with the edited (+1 stop) vesion. Next time Lrc has to go to the image file (say to build a larger preview) it will pull in the +1 stop version and then apply your 1 stop increase which is in the catalog.
  3. Unless you are accessing these JPG images outside of LrC with some other tools, or sending them someplace, it's not clear what the purpose is of over writing the original.
  4. I would strongly suggest that your "workflow" will ultimatly cause you grief and suggest that you re-think it. If you provide the purpose behind the workflow we can help you devise one that would not be so risky.
 

cookiecutter

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After 5), I post 5-star rated images on Facebook, and maybe years later, I browse the whole folder of images on Windows Photos app (not lightroom). That's it.
I simply don't want to keep the originals because there's no point after editing them.
 
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I simply don't want to keep the originals because there's no point after editing them.
What happens when there is irrevocably changes made yo the derivative image like a crop or color change or technology advances to a point where working with the original would be useful?

I have fistfuls of b&w paper prints from my parents and other ancestors where my ancestors did not consider keeping the negatives important. Oh what I could do with those negatives to day! I think you are being very short sighted


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 
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OK - I have a plan, but the steps would be different depending on whehter or not you need metadata changes included in the test of whether the image was changed or not. I also need to test one aspect of my plan before I write it out. So, in the step list, step 3, if you changed just metadata (e.g. star ratings or added keywords or the like) would that image be included in step 4?
 

cookiecutter

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@Califdan, If I changed just metadata, I'd hope lightroom updates it automatically without having to export again & suffer from degradation.

@clee01l, this is just out of topic now. I know what I'm doing and it is my own preference NOT to re-visit / re-edit images that have already been edited as a few hundred thousand images go through my catalog yearly, so it's just impossible for me to dedicate time to edit them again.
 
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If I changed just metadata, I'd hope lightroom updates it automatically without having to export again & suffer from degradation.
Not by default. If you want it to do so you have two options. You can set "automatically write changes into XMP" (Edit menu: Catalog Settings - Metadata tab), or you can select specific images and do <Ctrl>+s (same as menu "Metadata -> Save metadata to files". Both of these methods do the same thing. However, I'm not sure where inside the Jpg it puts the new info. I suspect that it puts it into an "XMP" block rather than over writing data in the standard EXIF or IPTC blocks, but I will let someone else answer that part. And, whoever chimes in here, when you export an image does the metadata from the catalog get placed in an XMP block or into more standard JPG data blocks? I'm out of my expertise area on this
 
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