From Lightroom to Instagram

Lightroom has become one of the new standards for a photographers portfolio. It’s a great way to connect with other photographers and explore your style through a tiny little square. Instagram has had an interesting evolution over time. The overly-filtered film-stripped 1:1 photo is a thing of the past. The future holds a thoughtful grid of your favorite photos.

You’ve taken some amazing photos. You want to share them with the world. How do you get your photos from Lightroom onto Instagram?

First let’s take a step back. The largest aspect ratio that Instagram let’s you use is the 4:5 aspect ratio. This takes up the most amount of real estate when you’re scrolling through a feed. This is the aspect ratio that I started using and it lets me display more interesting shots by cropping in on my subjects or landscapes.

How to crop to 4:5

In Lightroom, Select the Develop Module > Select the crop tool > Select 4 x 5

Having a queue of photos

I pick some of my favorites, put them in a catalog and make my crops. Before any cropping, I create a virtual copy of the image and use that copy to populate my collection. The virtual copy is important in keeping your original photo as-is in your catalog and in other collections. Lately, I’ll take a vertical and horizontal photo of the same scene if I think the photo is worth sharing on Instagram.

Now, let’s talk about how to transfer your files from Lightroom into Instagram.

You have many different options, but I’ll focus on two that have worked for me.

Sync a collection with Lightroom Mobile

  • Download the Lightroom app for your Phone
  • Select “Sync with Lightroom Mobile” by right clicking your collection on Lightroom (Desktop)
  • From within Lightroom (Mobile), you can share a photo directly to Instagram
    • Click the export button in the top corner
    • Click “Share”
    • Choose “Maximum available”
    • Select “Import with Instagram”

Use an Instagram post manager

This is a bit more involved but relatively straight forward. Services like Buffer and Later offer the ability to upload many different Instagram posts in a queue.

Process for using an Instagram post manager

  • Export the files onto your computer
  • Login to your favorite service (Buffer, Later, etc…)
  • Upload your photo
  • Create a caption and add your hashtags
  • Add to your queue!

After your queue is fully stocked, visit your corresponding app, with the service you picked, from your phone. Each post manager has lots of amazing features, like choosing a posting schedule and other optimizations and analytics.

Now, you can be more conscious about the types of photos you’re sharing with Instagram. Have a different workflow to post your Instagram photos? Let me know and send me a message on my Instagram.