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When you’re new to Lightroom there are lots of things about the Lightroom interface that contribute to its steep learning curve. Most Lightroom users can tell you a story or two of being caught by items appearing, or disappearing, without warning. With experience these are minor inconveniences, but when you are new to Lightroom, they can be overwhelming. So, just how much do you know about the Lightroom interface? Take this quiz and find out:
What is this and how do you get it back if it disappears?
That is the Toolbar, and you can display or hide it by pressing the letter T on your keyboard. You can also choose View > Hide Toolbar or View > Show Toolbar depending on whether it is currently visible or not. There is a toolbar in every module in Lightroom.
When you used Lightroom recently, you recall seeing small indicators like this in the bottom right corner of some of your images. What are they and how do you get them back if they’re not showing in grid view?
These are Thumbnail Badges, and they indicate whether or not an image has been cropped, has develop presets, keywords added, and so on. In the Library module pressing the letter J will toggle through a number of options for your grid view, two of which include thumbnail badges.
Most panels show filled in triangles like the one on the left (below), but one of the panels has a triangles like the one on the right (also below). Why is it different?
The second panel on the right is set to what is called Solo Mode. When this option is enabled, and you click to open any of the panels, all other panels will close automatically (essentially leaving only one opened at a time). The Navigator and the Histogram are exceptions to this rule and they operate independently of Solo Mode. To enable or disable Solo Mode, right click on the name of any panel (the actual word not the triangle) and choose Solo Mode from the options given (see below).
This is the Develop module and the Basic panel is missing. What has happened and how do you get it back?
Any panel can be enabled or disabled in Lightroom. If you’re missing a panel, right click another panel in that same sidebar to display the panel list. Any panel name without a checkmark isn’t visible, so to make it visible, just click the panel name.
This is the list of Lightroom modules. A module is missing, what is it and how do you get it back?
The Develop module is missing. You get it back the same way as you would a missing panel, right click any of the module names to show a list of modules. Any that do not have checkmarks beside them are not visible. Select that one to display it.
There used to be a panel here in Lightroom just above the thumbnails in grid view in the Library module. It’s disappeared. What is it, and how would you get it back?
This is the Filter bar, and you can display or hide it by pressing the Backslash key (\). You can also display or hide it by choosing View > Show Filter Bar.
Here just above the filmstrip you recall that at one stage you saw Star, Flag and Color options, but they now seem to be missing. How do you get them back?
Click the word Filter and the filters will reappear. Click Filter again and they will disappear.
What is this called and how can you get rid of it or choose what information is showing?
This is the Loupe Info Overlay and you can display and hide it by pressing the I key on your keyboard. There are three states for this: Info Overlay 1, Info Overlay 2, and turning it off entirely. To edit what information is displayed click CMD+J (Control+J on a PC) or go to: View > View Options.
This is the right hand corner of the Lightroom screen and the controls for Maximize, Minimize and Close are all missing, as are all the Lightroom menus on the left of the window. How do you get them back?
To redisplay the Lightroom menu and the Windows controls press Shift + F. This is a toggle switch which displays and hides full screen mode. There are three states for full screen mode so press Shift + F repeatedly until the Lightroom menu and the Window controls reappear.
Here, in the Develop module, you don’t see any stars on the toolbar when you are viewing this image at full size. The stars only appear on the toolbar when you are in Grid view. Where did they go and how can you get them back?
The toolbar in the Develop module has two states, one for the Grid View, and one for the Loupe (single image) View. To display and hide the various options on either toolbar, switch to that view, and click the arrow in the far right of the toolbar to display the options available in that view. Click any unchecked option to display it on that toolbar, likewise you can click any checked options that you want to hide.
If you got 10 out of 10 on this quiz, well done! You have a good understanding of the basics of the Lightroom interface.
If you missed any of these questions, hopefully you’ve learned something about using Lightroom that you did not know before.