Hi Mike, thanks for the response. I typically come back from shooting and download from SD cards straight into an external hard drive with plenty of room (1.5TB). When I open LR, I guess I'm importing the images I want to review from the external to my main internal drive. How do you tell LR where you want to add photos to or from--i.e., how do you specify the drive folder location to store the images? That's what I'm not sure of.
I'm not sure if you're using Mac or PC, but in Windows, you go to File/ Import from Disk, assuming you're importing the images to your hard drive from an external drive (or File/Import from Device if you're using a card reader) and where it says "Look In" you navigate to your external drive. For the sake of argument let's say you have a C: drive (limited space) and a D: drive (lots of room) in your computer and an external hard drive, which we'll call the E: drive. You highlight the image or images you want from the E:, and select 'Choose'. That opens the next step, where Lightroom asks you (under 'File Handling') if you want to import the images to the catalogue from their current location (i.e. the images stay on the external drive), or if you want to move or copy them to a new location. In this example we'll select 'Copy files to a new location and add to the catalog'. You can also convert them to .dng if you wish. Under that is 'Copy to location, and when you click 'Choose', you tell Lightroom where to copy the files, which in this example is the D: drive. Navigate to where you want to put them, select all or some of the images you're shown as well as the other develop, metadata, etc. settings you want, and click Import. Lightroom will either add these images to an existing folder in the catalogue or create a new folder listing in the Library, depending on whether or not that folder alreadys exists in the Library. What the Lightroom catalogue is doing is creating and maintaining a dynamic link to these files at their new location on your D: drive. All clear as mud?