Use the Printing functionality or slideshow capability of Lightroom to quickly create contact sheets to send off to clients with maximum control over quality, watermarking, “stylish” backgrounds, and much more! In this Adobe Lightroom tutorial, I’ll talk all about how to create Contact sheets using the Print functionality and a little export PDF trick, how to export a series of JPEG contact sheets in case you ever wanted to do that, and also how to create a more luxurious type of single-image contact sheet that can have music added (probably don’t want to do that,) and all kinds of other graphical or data based options. You’ve got to check it out to see all the features and options!
Export JPEG Contact Sheets
To create and export JPEG contact sheets, choose the Print module and look to the left and choose a template you like from the Lightroom Templates and choose to include selected photos or all the photos in that filmstrip using the “Use:” drop down menu at the bottom of the viewing area. We will cover most of the many options over on the right side of the interface, but the most important part over there is if you scroll down and find the Print Job panel and choose the “Print To:” drop down menu and choose “JPEG File” and then hit the “Print To File…” button below this panel and choose where to save the JPEG contact sheets. Lightroom will export as many JPEGs as it takes to display all of your images and will stash them in a folder wherever you chose to save the file(s).
Export a PDF Contact Sheet
To export a straight PDF contact sheet, stay in the Print module and set the “Print To:” drop down menu back to “Printer” and choose the “Printer…” button below this panel and select the PDF drop down menu and choose to save the PDF. Choose where you’d like to save the PDF and let Lightroom do the rest and export your full PDF. NOTE: Windows machines will be slightly different at this step than the Mac. Windows does not have the PDF printer driver included so you will either need Acrobat installed or you should be able to Google search and find a PDF printer driver that you can use for this step.
Export a Slideshow PDF Contact Sheet
The last way is by jumping over to the Slideshow module and set the aesthetic of your slideshow by choosing things like the margins, background color or photo, type caption, and even a watermark (probably more important with a slideshow contact sheet because the images will probably be a little bigger than on a standard contact sheet because you can only put one image on each page. I like to make sure the slideshow is set to manual and not an automatic playing slideshow. Once you figure out exactly how you would like the slideshow contact sheet to look choose the “Export PDF…” button over on the far left just above the filmstrip and choose where to save the PDF and Lightroom will export the PDF and you’ll be on your way!