Large catalog workflow tip

Loading large catalogs (catalogs with more than 30,000 imported photos) to Imagen usually has longer waiting times than smaller catalogs. Small catalogs have a very fast loading time.

We recommend the following workflow to avoid lengthy waiting times without compromising your regular workflow with a large catalog.

The suggested workflow is straightforward and highly recommended for photographers who use large catalogs:

  1. Import the project photos into your main Lightroom catalog as usual.
  2. On the Library module (A), on the left panel (B), locate the project folder (C).
  3. Right-click on the folder name, and select "Export this folder as a catalog" from the menu (D).


  4. Select a temporary, easy-to-reach folder on the "Export as Catalog" window, and name the new catalog (A).
    We recommend checking the "Build / Include Smart Previews" box (B), which helps the upload process be more efficient.


  5. Select the new catalog in Imagen and send your project photos for culling or editing.
  6. Download the ratings or edits to the catalog.

    At this point, you can either continue to step #7 and edit the project on your main catalog or continue editing the project on the new catalog to enjoy a faster, responsive Lightroom Catalog. Once your project is fully edited, move to step #7.

  7. Open your main Lightroom Classic catalog.
  8. Choose File > Import From Another Catalog, and navigate to the new temporary catalog of the project.

    • Under Catalog Contents, select the folders that contain the photos you want to import.
    • Under "Changed Existing Photos", choose “Metadata and develop settings only” (A).
  9. Click Import (B).


  10. After the process ends, the metadata and all the develop settings are applied to the original folder you imported at the beginning.



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