You can create separate folders on the disk, select photos by simply deleting the excess in the explorer, and search for the necessary frames from last year’s shooting by manually sorting through. Or you can clean up your computer using Lightroom tools. Read about how to do this in this material.
Manual work with catalogs has the right to life if you shoot a little and only for yourself. But if you shoot a lot, the photos are on a file server, three external drives and two drives on a working computer, it will take a long time to search by hand. Lightroom, on the other hand, will help you quickly select good photos, quickly find a studio beauty shoot from two years ago, and tell you which lens you use most often.
Selecting good photos and removing unwanted ones with Lightroom
We select and keep the best
We select and discard the worst
Color labels in Lightroom, why you need them and how to use them
How to use metadata filters in Lightroom
How to use collections in Lightroom
How to work with keywords in Lightroom
In order not to store dozens of unsuccessful takes on disks, it is worth selecting a photo and immediately throwing out the unnecessary.
There are two ways to select photos. In one case, we select and mark the best photos, which we leave. In the other, we mark only the bad ones, which are to be thrown out.
We select and keep the best
This method is well suited for those cases when you have taken a thousand or two photos, from which you need to choose a hundred of the best. For example, it can be reportage shooting of sports competitions. Or two and a half thousand photos of puppies, and you need to choose sharp pictures. Preferably, on which there are not only dog tails.
Let’s go through the footage and assign one star rating to the ones we like. To do this, simply navigate through the photos using the left-right up-down arrows, and when the desired photo is selected, press 1 on the keyboard (if you accidentally assigned an asterisk to the wrong photo, just press zero).
After all the necessary photos have been assigned an asterisk, turn on the filter by rating by clicking on the asterisk in the filter bar. Only photos with a rating of one star or higher are now visible. Then you can start developing (or, if there are still too many photos, go through them again and assign two stars to the best ones).
We select and discard the worst
The second selection method is better suited for those who shoot a little and are confident in every frame. For example, you did a beauty shoot in a studio, got one and a half hundred beautiful pictures, among which there were a dozen unsuccessful ones — the model blinked, the flash didn’t work, etc. In this case, of course, it’s easier to mark bad pictures and throw them out.
After all unnecessary photos are marked, press Ctrl + Backspace, and Lightroom will offer to delete all photos marked with such a flag.
Don’t forget to empty the trash after that.
In addition to rating stars, photos can be assigned one of five color labels — red, yellow, green, blue and magenta.
The first use case is to highlight with color photos that require special additional processing. For example, when selecting, you can mark with color the pictures that need to be assembled into a panorama or glued together in HDR.
It is also convenient when you need to divide the photo into groups. For example, you filmed a report from one event for two customers at once. The best ones were selected, processed, and now we need to divide them and not get confused so that the same frame does not go to different clients. To do this, we look through our frames and mark them with different colors. Red — for the first client, blue — for the second. Or when you are doing a photo project, you can mark photos of different clients with different colors.
After that, you can turn on the filter and export red pictures to one folder, blue ones to another.
A useful tool that allows you to find among your pictures, for example, all taken with the same lens or on a specific date. It is located in the Library tab / Library, line Library Filter / Library Filter, item Metadata / Metadata.
There are a lot of options for selecting photos in this filter. It can search for pictures taken on a specific date with a specific camera or lens, choose a photo at a low ISO or wide aperture.
Let’s take a look at some of its most useful features.
- Filter Date / Date. If you want to see what was filmed last summer or find a shoot that was done in September the year before, you need the first column. In it you can view pictures for a year, a month or a specific day. Most importantly, make sure that the date on your camera is set correctly.
- Filter Camera / Camera. The filter by camera is useful if several photographers with different cameras worked at the shooting. In this case, it can be easier to work with images from each of the cameras separately, both when selecting images and during processing. Just select one of the cameras from the list and Lightroom will only show photos from that camera.
- Filter Lens/Lens. This filter is useful if you need to apply specific settings to photos taken with a specific lens. For example, you know that your telephoto camera gives a softer picture than the standard zoom, and the pictures taken on it should be added clarity and saturation. We select the desired lens in the table, and now we can increase the clarity and dehaze only for the necessary shots.
A collection is a virtual folder where you can put photos that are located in different folders on different drives. At the same time, they will physically remain in their places, but in Lightroom it will be possible to work with them as if they were in the same folder.
For example, let’s take photos of the same place, taken at different times and in different places, and combine them into one collection.
First, click on the plus and create a new collection. Since we have already selected photos that will be included in the collection, put a tick Include selected photos.
A start. Go to another folder on a network drive. We select photos with the station building of interest to us, and press B to add files to the collection. We repeat until all the necessary files are in our collection. If you make a mistake, press B again and Lightroom will remove the files from the collection.
And here is the result: in our collection there are 42 photos that you can work with without switching between disks and folders.
Lightroom search is capable of a lot. But so far, Lightroom is not able to independently distinguish a family shoot on the street from a fashion shoot in the studio, and it is unlikely to find all the shots taken for a particular client.
But you can help him by adding keywords to the pictures, by which he can find the necessary pictures. To do this, open the library tab Keywording/Adding keywords and enter suitable keywords.
Keywords can be any, in Russian or any other. If you are a landscape painter, these words can be the name of the area (“Karelia”, “Baikal”, “mountains”, “waterfall”), season or day (“winter”, “summer”, “dawn”). For a commercial photographer — the name of the customer, the type of shooting (“subject”, “food”, “wedding”, “studio”), genre (“fashion”, “family shooting”, “lovestory”, “holiday”).
Moreover, if you export JPEG, all information will be written to EXIF and will be automatically picked up when uploading to the stock and will be visible even in the standard Windows viewer. If not exported, the information will only be stored in the Lightroom catalog.
Now Lightroom can search for those words. To search in the Library Filter, select the Text tab, and the Keywords item from the drop-down list.