How to Crop in Lightroom

Lightroom is an exciting platform to transform your pictures into captivating art pieces. Several easy-to-use and cool features enable your photos to stand out and become highly sought-after. Cropping an image is the easiest task you can take in Lightroom. The process might be confusing for beginners, but with well-structured guidelines, you will find cropping fun.

Guide to Using the Lightroom Crop Tool

In Lightroom, you can make changes to your picture, such as cropping, without altering the original picture. This is known as non-destructive editing. Editing in Lightroom means you would instruct the software to make some changes that would be evident only when your picture has been exported. However, the original image on your hard drive or camera remains the same.

To access the crop tool, you must be familiar with the developer tab. You can access this tab in the top right corner of your screen next to the library module. Click on the developer module or go the easy way by clicking ‘D’ on your keyboard to access the module. Finally, select the crop and straighten the tool on the right side of the developer panel.

There are quite a number of tools within the crop panel. Here are simplified explanations of what they are and how you can apply them to perfect your raw photos.


The aspect option is one feature in photography that is commonly overlooked. The aspect ratio is used to describe the width of an image in relation to its height, and this relationship is expressed in a ratio. You can set your picture to your preferred dimension with the aspect option.

The Angle Slider

The angle slider is commonly used to modify the angles of a picture. If you wish to straighten the edges of your picture, you can do that by clicking and moving the slider in either direction till you are satisfied with the result.

By using the cropping tool, you can effectively improve the composition of your images, eliminate distractions, and bring to focus the main concept of your photograph.

Lightroom Cropping Process

Below is a step-by-step guide to crop your pictures in Lightroom like a pro.

1. Open Lightroom Application

There are two popular versions of Lightroom; Lightroom Classic and Lightroom CC. Lightroom CC allows you to navigate the software easily on your tablet, iPad, or smartphone. Lightroom Classic has more extensive features than CC, which makes it ideal for desktop use.

Lightroom Application Icon

2. Import Your Photos

Connect your external hard drive, camera, or memory card to your computer and click on the file tab. From the drop-down menu, click on “import photos and videos,” or you could go to the library module and select the import button.

Import Photos into Lightroom

3. Crop Your Picture

To access the crop tool, click the developer tab and survey the menu for a little crop icon. Click on this icon and use either of the methods below to crop your picture.

Method 1: Adjust The Crop Overlay

This is a quick method employed if you wish to eliminate unwanted elements in your photo. After clicking on the crop icon, you should expect a grid-like crop overlay on your picture.

Click on your photo’s right or left sides to modify the width and drag inwards until you are okay with the dimension. To modify the height, click on the top or bottom of your picture and drag inwards till you are happy with the dimension.

You can also modify the height and width of your picture simultaneously by clicking the top or bottom corner of the picture and dragging it inwards.

Method 2: Make Use of The Aspect Option

The aspect option is the easiest method to employ if you need a specific dimension for your image. Click on the aspect option, choose your preferred ratio from the drop-down menu, and watch Lightroom adjust your picture automatically.

Method 3: The Crop Frame Tool

If you prefer avoiding clicking and dragging overlays, get your preferred dimension by using the crop frame tool beside the aspect option. This tool can draw a new and specific crop area over your photo.

Lightroom Crop Frame Tool

4. Apply Modifications

Once you are satisfied with the outcome of your cropping job, take your cursor to the bottom of your workspace and click done. You can make additional changes to your picture or save and export.

Final Thoughts

Cropping is one of the easiest tasks when editing an image in Lightroom. You can be assured of getting the best results whichever method you prefer to use.


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