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How to Use Split View to Compare Before-and-After Versions of a Photo in Lightroom Classic

So you've put in your time finessing the edit of a photo. There comes a time where you think you're finished and in creeps some doubt. Does this edit look natural? Are my colours right? Is that too much clarity? Because photo editing is inherently a subjective skill, only you'll know the answers to these questions.

In this tutorial I'm going to show you an incredible simple way to compare your edited photo with the original photo so you can more accurately decide on the aesthetic that suits you and your edit.

How to Use Split -Screen Mode in Lightroom

1. Open Your Edited Photo in Lightroom Classic

Here's a photo from a few years back at a cranberry farm. This is the finished edit that I made in Lightroom Classic. As I near the end of an edit, I like to compare my edited photo to the original, to refresh my eyes so that I can more accurately decide on the look.

2. Locate and Click the Before / After Views

Placed just above the bottom navigation panel is a little button that displays as |Y|Y|. This is the Before / After View toggle button.

The Y's refer to an image, so by clicking on the Before / After View, you'll automatically see your original photo (Before) on the left, and your edited photo (After) on the right.

As you can now see, this gives us a wealth of information about our edited photo in relation to our original. Click the Before / After View button again to toggle between additional layouts of your before and after photos. 

I hope you see how valuable it can be to compare your edited photo to your original. This gives me perspective, showing me where I've perhaps gone too far, or maybe not far enough in my edit.

Give this a try next time you think you're finished an edit, or are feeling uncertain about the direction of your edit, and I have a feeling you'll know just what to do to proceed.

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