24 May 2009
Every time I finalize a client's project, my skin crawls when I get to the contact sheet.
I use Peter Krogh's DAM format for naming my images, so it's imperative I include contact sheets with the file names for easy reference by the client. One time, a client asked for additional contact sheets, and I had to recreate and print them all over again. Well, for me, inconvenience is the mother of invention, so from that point on, I began including contact sheet .pdfs on every client's dvd of images.
Lightroom makes creating and printing contact sheets a breeze. Saving them as a .pdf, however, has always been a different matter. Think spinning balls and time for brewing a fresh cup of tea, catching up on filing, and cleaning out the email inbox. More often than not, it resulted in a major Lightroom crash. [shudder]
Ever tenacious when it comes to overcoming computer hang-ups, I finally unearthed a simple little phrase yesterday in yet another google search: "Creating your Contact Sheet in draft mode will drastically improve the speed of creation." Thanks to Rob Sylvan's entry on the blog Lightroomers I now have enough time to blog about all things photography! (Thanks, Rob!) I promptly found him on Twitter so I can stay up-to-date on all of his future tips.
Here is how I save contact sheets: (mac G5 running system 10.5.7): From the Lightroom 'Print' module, I check the box for 'draft mode' found in the settings pane running down the right side of the window. Then, I click on print. At the bottom left of the screen, click on the 'pdf' button > save as .pdf. I leave the settings at the default and click okay.
Yesterday, by simply checking the 'draft mode', 6 pages of contact sheets were saved as .pdf in less than 30 seconds. Sure beats three hours.