How I Watermark Photos with Lightroom 2

A nice feature of Lightroom 2’s Export dialog is the ability to automatically add exported copies into the Lightroom catalog. Among other uses, I find it to be a very handy way to add a custom watermark using theLR2Mogrify export plugin to copies of photos I want to add to a Lightroom web gallery. Here are the steps:

  1. Select photo(s) to be watermarked, click Export.
  2. Configure Export dialog to include Mogrify watermark, check the Add to This Catalog box, configure other settings as desired, click Export.
  3. Select imported watermarked photos and switch to Web module.
  4. Configure gallery and upload.

Here’s an example gallery. To make it easier to manage these watermarked copies I always configure the Export dialog to save them into a subfolder within the folder that contains the original photos, but you might want to do it differently.

Export Dialog

For my watermark I use the Text Annotation feature of the Mogrify plugin to add my name, copyright and email (all pulled from each photo’s metadata) to the center of each photo at a low opacity and then I use the Graphical Watermark panel to add a PNG of my signature to the lower left corner. This feels like a good compromise between keeping the photo viewable and keeping my name associated with the photo. I also use Mogrify to add a border. I’ve found this to be the most flexible and efficient process for adding a custom watermark to all photos leaving Lightroom. I do the same for the photos in my blog posts or when sending via email. I’ve even used it as a way to add my signature to prints.

EDIT: I have written a more in-depth tutorial on using LR2Mogrify for anyone needing more detail: Watermark with Lightroom

19 thoughts on “How I Watermark Photos with Lightroom 2”

  1. I’ve used Mogrify also to add watermarks, but I’ve noticed that it doesn’t scale the watermark dependent on the end size after cropping. This makes for enormous watermarks on small crops and minuscule watermarks on default sizes.

  2. I got all the way up to uploading the watermarked photo, but then it asks me for a password. What password is this?

  3. Hi Steph,

    I can only assume it was the password for your web host if you were in the process of uploading. Can you say more? Were you using Lightroom’s web module to upload the gallery? Mac or Win?

  4. I need to simply export selected photos with my watermark. That is all. I already have a gallery and a website, so I dont need a whole gallery made in web module to export. I’ve been spending days trying to figure this out. Other than opening each and every image in PS, and flat/resaving… which would take many hours… I am losing hope that there is a faster easier way! I just need the images, with watermarks, so I can upload to my own gallery/website.

    Thank you so much for any input!!

  5. Hi Shannon,

    You can use Mogrify to do this. Just use step 1-2 and you will have exported watermarked copies. You can then upload them to your website. Download the plugin and give it a try.

  6. How do you do this part “2.Configure Export dialog to include Mogrify watermark”? I’m stuck getting out of the barn! 😀

  7. I bought LR2Mogrify and have spent the whole afternoon trying to do a sample to no avail. I follow all the instructions and there is no watermark on the new file.

    I am trying to watermark previous photos and put them in a file on my hard drive marked Watermarked.

    Do I export the photos twice? Once normally, and then watermarked (if I ever figure out how to do it?)

    I am super-frustrated.


  8. Hi Rob:

    I’m using a new Mac and Lightroom 2.

    The program is there in the export dialog box, I’ve done everything on your tutorial, but when I export it to my hard drive, the file has no watermark on it.

  9. Rob:

    On another note, I see you give a four-hour class on LR2. I have two books (not yours though) and have tried to teach myself, but I don’t think I’m doing a lot of things to my best interests…even in terms of my files, etc. The class sounds like it’s comprehensive and interactive… Have students had good results with it?

  10. Rob:

    Good news. The watermark worked for the graphic watermark. Don’t know that I love how it looks, but it’s a start!!


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