Making Session Album Prints in Lightroom – Free Template Included!

In my first collection that includes an album, I use the Finao Self mount (Eements) albums:

(Forgive the terrible product shot!)

Self mount just means that you order the prints from your own lab and then mount them in the album via peel and stick.  The album is 8×8 and square, and you don’t want people to have to turn the album to see the vertical vs landscape images, so the simplest way to accomplish that is to do create and order from your lab an 8×8 print with a 5×7 image on it.  For those of you having a hard time visualizing, here is what it sort of looks like:

To create these 8×8 prints I used to use photoshop and run an action, but I recently realized how EASY it is to do this right in Lightroom! Here’s how:

I also am making available for download the album print templates for the LR print module that I showed you on the video. You can download them from here:

How to install

Unzip the folder.

Go to the print module in Lightroom and from the Template Browser on the left click the little plus sign and create a new template (name it anything you want, you can delete it later). Right click on your new template and choose “Show in Explorer” (Win) or “Show in Finder” (Mac) which will give you the correct folder to drop the UNZIPPED Album Prints folder into.  DO NOT drop the zipped folder, you must unzip and drop that folder in the correct directory.

Mac users that folder should be somewhere like here: user/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Lightroom/Print Templates

Win users: C:\Users\yourusername\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Lightroom\Print Templates\Album Prints

IMPORTANT: You must close and restart lightroom for the new print templates to appear (they should now be in a folder called “Album Prints” in your template browser!)


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Wall Display Templates for Photographers

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Nina says:

What ppi do you use when you export? I have seen my results very. I make all my albums in LR as well!

Thanks Ariana!

Amy says:

This is wonderful! Thanks so much for these!

ariana says:

You’re welcome guys!

Jackie, you just made me realize how shortsighted I was focusing ONLY on self mounts when the template/technique can aboslutely be applied to flushmounts!

Jackie Mysak says:

Thank you so much! You have no idea how many times I’ve asked photographers if their square flush mount album pages are blank white 8×8 prints with a 5×7 placed as a layer before flattening. My question was always met with silence — and I didn’t know if that was because it was just a stupid question, or an industry secret. :) Probably the former, but thank you for this! I had planned on doing an 8×8 this way, and now I know I’m not the only one!

Angela says:

This is just fabulous! Thank you so so so much for sharing! You’re a gem :)

Connie says:

What a great tutorial! Would you mind sharing where you get your adorable props? Those hats are just too cute! Do you make them yourself?

Tracey says:

This is just what I have been looking for. Thank you so much!

ariana says:

Monika- yes, for all my prints!

Jennifer – yes, i’ve seen those borders, very nice!
The answer is.. yes and no. Not for the border types that go OVER the image.. but for ones that do not, it can be done. I actually plan on developing some soon :)

Jennifer says:

Just wanted to let Tina know that Design Aglow has some PS actions for this kind of thing in their shop – under proof borders. :)


Would there be a way like your wall display guides to have this connected to a psd file where you could add decorative elements to the page (like the aforementioned Design Aglow proof borders) ? My mind is spinning with all the possibilities this opens up!

Thanks so much for the templates!


Monika says:

Thank you so much for your answer.
I have never tired sharpening for print in LR. I was afraid it may not be enough. Do you sharpen in LR for all your prints? What about larger sizes pictures?

ariana says:

Monika – no, definitely not! :) For web I sharpen in PS (USM) and then save a jpg because I prefer USM to the lightroom screen sharpening. But for print, I use the lightroom default for print sharpening (for glossy paper) and I find it to be fine.

As far as cropping, if you use LR and PS, you should really never do your cropping in PS because it’s destructive.. at least you should never crop and then save!

I do all my editing in LR, then photoshop so I end up with all PSD files. Once a psd is saved it’s still in LR, and THATS when I would be doing my exports for printing including these album prints. Hope that helps!

Monika says:

Hi Ariana,
Great new post. I was just wondering: after you PP your pictures in PS do you make them ready for print over there (I mean by cropping, sharpening) and then go back to LR and print to file for your album? You mentioned you sharpen them in LR for glossy paper? So in that case do you sharpen them twice? I only use LR at the beginning of my pp and finish everything in PS. And then taking about sharpening for print which is another story. Do you use unsharp mask or do you go to sharp smart? Or maybe you prefer a sharpening action? Sorry for all those questions.
Hope you are having a great day,

ariana says:

Hi Tina, no I suck at making actions that are not dependent on my file structure (for saving etc!).

Tina says:

Thank you for the LR share! Do you have the PS action available?