Here are two Lightroom keyboard shortcuts I use dozens of times every day. And they are:
#1. Tap the J Key in Grid View – Library Module
I set my Lightroom View Options in the Library to show specific photo metadata (Merriam Webster definition:data that provides information about other data) when I’m editing (paring down to the best of the best) in the Grid View. For me, it’s a learning experience. I get exposure information that tells me if I did something wrong (or right!) and see my capture time (important to me!). Expanded cells show me as much info as possible, including the file extension (always raw for me, but sometimes things get changed by accident) and my file base name or copy name. To set your View Options dialog box for your Library Grid View, tap Command J (Control J on the PC) or go to the top menu to View>View Options…. and choose the Grid View tab in the dialog box. It’s very simple to set up. As you select and deselect checklist items, your Grid View (in the background) metadata will reflect those changes immediately.
I am using the Show Grid Extras: Expanded Cells from the pulldown menu. After filling out the Expanded Cell Extras section, I can now view information I need on both the top and bottom of my thumb-nails that are not visible in the default Compact View. Make sure to check the “Include Color Label” box in the Show Rating Footer; I use color labels to further identify images I want to develop. This will add a small rectangle at the bottom of each thumbnail that acts as a pulldown menu to select color labels when you click on it. When you’re finished setting the Grid View Options, Simply close the window.
But sometimes I want less information on my Grid View thumbnails. Tapping the J key in the Library Module will now cycle through the View Options you have set. If you haven’t set your Grid View Options, Lightroom will cycle through the default views.
NOTE: Tapping J only works in the Library Module Grid View! Tapping J in the Develop Module turns on the highlight and shadow clipping indicators. Red and blue will appear on your photo in areas that are over or under exposed. If this happens in the Develop Module, tap the J key to turn it off. For total transparency, so you know, I sometimes tap the J key by accident in the Develop module (see J key, above) because I forget I’m not in the Grid View!
#2 Tap the i key in Loupe View – Library and Develop Module
Consecutive photos can look very similar when viewed as small thumbnails – or exactly the same – so I switch to Loupe View to view an individual selected photo. I have my View Options set to show my camera metadata in Loupe View, which shows me my shutter speed and f/stop on the top left. This gives me clues as to which of my photos in a series might be sharpest or have the best bokeh. You set your Loupe View Options in the same dialog box you used to set the the Grid View Options. Tapping the keyboard shortcut i in Loupe View lets you cycle through viewing the metadata you set, and this works in both in the Library and Develop modules. (FYI: If you tap i in the Book module it shows the book size and number of pages.) And, unlike the J key, tapping i won’t get you in trouble in other modules by doing something unexpected.
Notes on Tapping Command J (Control J on the PC) to Open the View Options Dialog
Now this may seem obvious since I’ve already mentioned this a few times, but Command or Control J is the keyboard shortcut to open the View Options dialog box in the Library and Develop modules. Tap Command or Control J in the Slideshow module and you’re prompted to save your slideshow as a PDF. In the Web module tapping this combination prompts you to save a web gallery. Just sayin’.