How To Add a Watermark in Lightroom

January 27, 2011

in Keli Hoskins, Lightroom, Photography Tutorials

Post image for How To Add a Watermark in Lightroom

I know the vast majority of you use Photoshop, but there are a few of us who also use Lightroom. So over the course of 2011, I’m going to work on creating a few tutorials especially for Lightroom users.

Now, if you have created your watermark {using this tutorial}, you might be wondering how to apply that watermark in Lightroom. And I’m here to show you how.

I currently use Lightroom 2, so the process may be different in Lightroom 3. When I win the lottery and can afford to buy every editing program I want, then I’ll do a follow-up tutorial for LR 3. Or perhaps someone using LR 3 can post a comment as to how similar/different it is?

If you don’t have a watermark, read this first. Stop at step 5. Go on. I’ll wait. And maybe have a tea party while I’m waiting.

Okay, so you have your watermark … make double triple sure that it’s on a transparent background!! Now, change the color of the watermark to white [#ffffff] and save it as a .psd file.

Download LR/Mogrify 2 (follow instructions here, including the installation of ImageMagick if you use Windows)

Here’s the kicker … the program developers do require a donation to use full features, BUT it’s worth it. They only require €2, but that’s only about $3, and they deserve it for making life this much easier.

Also, my husband is a developer, and I know how much work goes into the programs he designs … I’m always willing to give back to the people who do this for a living.

Open Lightroom and use the Plugin Manager to install LR/Mogrify 2 …

[I selected the wrong plugin, but you get it, right?]

Then, edit your image to your heart’s desire.

Go to File — Export (or Ctrl-Shift-E) and you will see this …

Make sure you have “graphical watermarks” selected [the “mogrify configuration” will automatically be selected when you do that] and then scroll down until you see where you upload your watermark.

Then, you can play around with the horizontal and vertical insets until you figure out where you want the watermark to go.

You can also select “soft light” in overlay mode to make it a little more transparent rather than stark white.

The placement of your watermark via LR leaves a lot to be desired, but it’s a fun game to play around and see where it lands once you’ve exported it.

I’m going to be honest … I have a 4-month old who thinks that sleeping is for younger babies, so if this didn’t make sense or I left something out or if you are sitting there scratching your head in bewilderment, PLEASE drop me a comment, and I’ll try to make it more clear.


Keli Hoskins is mama to two girls {Emma + Lucy}, a shallow-depth-of-field-addicted photographer, a drinker of coffee, a lover of yellow, a crazy spreadsheet maker, a Moleskine user and a voracious reader who blogs {almost} daily at Kidnapped by Suburbia.

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

kelly February 5, 2011

I have LR3 and would love to see exactly how to watermark with an image. 🙂


Kendra Jean Photography January 29, 2011

Yes, LR3 Is EASY!! all you do is when exporting, click on the watermark option, and click on the file/watermark that you have saved, choose where you want it placed and export!


kate January 28, 2011

nice ttutorial,can i ask where can i get the camera brush..


Erin January 28, 2011

I have LR3 and being that it was my first go with LR, I bought a book for LR3 by Scott Kelby. Super easy to follow and understand and I learned how to make my own watermark following his directions. Highly recommend it to anyone with LR3 who wants to know everything the program can do!!!


Sheri January 28, 2011

I have having issues installing magicjack, anyone else? I have Windows Vista 64 bit service pack 3??


Jenny January 27, 2011

thank you thank you thank you! I’ve been trying to figure out how to do this for the last 2 weeks and can’t figure it out 🙂 So excited and so glad I stumbled across your site a few weeks back and can’t wait to try this process on Lightroom. Yay! you made my day!


Sarah C. January 27, 2011

Do you know if this plugin would work for Aperture? I use Aperture and PSE. I hate having to go into PSE just to add a watermark.


Kelly C January 27, 2011

@Lauren –
It will only show up if you are on the Slideshow or Print tab… If you’ve already successfully made the watermark & loaded it, you go to one of those tabs and click the square that asks if you want the watermark and choose what watermark you want.


keli @ kidnapped by suburbia January 27, 2011

Apparently, I need to get LR3 because no one uses LR2 anymore. Whoops.

I do have to say that other than installing the plugin (which you only have to do once), the application in LR3 doesn’t seem that much different? Plus, I save what I’m doing as a user export and only have to click once for any future images.


Jove January 27, 2011

My wife + I use LR3 and have used Mogrify to place our watermark for images on our blog ( But instead of having it directly on the image, we have it on the border, which is easily achieved by playing around with the inner and outer borders in the mogrify plug-in. It’s very convenient. =D


Raven @ LMMP January 27, 2011

I have LR3 and it is super easy – no plug in required process. You just upload the Png file into your “import watermark” in the watermark editor. After that you can fine tune where you would like the watermark to be placed (after choosing general positioning).

Then you can choose to add the watermark via your export (I specifically export face book sized photos with my watermark on them into a separate folder for web viewing and faster upload times).

And I would have to say that the vast majority of professionals use LR and/or Aperture if not more so than PS for general edits – as it provides a much faster workflow. 🙂


Susan Fowler January 27, 2011

LR3 is worlds easier! I never had LR2, so I didn’t realize how easy I have it!

1) Go to ‘file’, then ‘export’
2) Choose all your settings, then at the bottom, you’ll see ‘watermarking’ – click on the checkbox to activate it, and then in the drop down menu to the right, choose ‘edit watermarks’
3) A new window will open where you will see on the top right ‘image options’ and click ‘choose’ – at this point, you’ll need to find where you saved your .png watermark on your computer.
4) Once you choose and go back to the main screen, you can look under ‘watermark effects’ to change the opacity, location, and size of your watermark.
5) Make sure to give your watermark a name for future use so you don’t have to do all this again! Then click ‘done.’

Ta-da! Super duper easy- and you can save several different watermarks in there with different sizes and such- just name them different things. You can also just add text as a watermark by going through that same process, and instead of choosing an image, click on ‘text options.’


Renee Churchill January 27, 2011

I have used this plugin for about a year and I love it. It is super easy and well worth the donation.


Texan Mama January 27, 2011

I have LR3 and I put a watermark on my photos but I wish I had more control over the placement. Right now, you can only use it in one of the 9 tic-tac-toe placements on the photo.

And, I don’t use PHotoshop so that original tutorial wouldn’t help. But thanks for sharing it anyway.


Emmy Mom January 27, 2011

I have LR3 and it is much easier than that now, it has also gotten better with the placement. If you would like, I will write up a tutorial that I will publish on my photography blog tomorrow for sure could get it up by Saturday-depending on if I take my kids to the Dr today or not.


Lauren January 27, 2011

So confused, but I do have LR3. It’s very different. I can create the watermark, but it doesn’t end up on my image…..Grrrr!
If you know some one who can help with LR3 I would so appreciate it! Thanks for taking the time to help others =] I can be emailed at the above address.


DaniGirl January 27, 2011

Hey, this is great! I’m a LR convert, and not having to open PS to watermark is terrific. Thanks!


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