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In Photoshop Elements 6 for Mac Essential Training, Ted LoCascio teaches casual photographers how to organize, edit, and share their digital image libraries using this powerful software package from Adobe. He tours the included Adobe Bridge application, used for importing and organizing photographs, and explores every feature of Elements itself. He demonstrates how to navigate the Elements workspace, which is used to correct and improve images, combine them into projects, and produce slideshows, photo books, web galleries, and more. Ted also explains how to get the most out of each editing mode, and shares tips for correcting, retouching, and sharpening photographs. Example files accompany the course.
As you import more and more photos into your collection, it can become increasingly difficult to locate specific images that you would like to edit and share. Thankfully, Elements 6 includes some excellent search features that can make this task a whole lot easier. I'm currently in Bridge and I'm viewing the exercise files. I'm actually viewing the catalog images that are part of our exercise files. That's what we're seeing here in our Content panel. What I would like to do is actually narrow down what we're viewing inside of the Content panel. I would like to do so by performing a search.
So what I'm going to do is actually go under the Edit menu and bring up the Find dialog box by choosing the Find command or you can press Command+F to bring up this dialog box quickly. All right, so inside of this dialog box we have to set up some parameters here for our search and that will affect what we're viewing in the background here in our Content panel. At the top, you can choose your source. It's defaulting to what we're already viewing here in the background and that is our catalog images folder. If you click on the double arrow so you can reveal this dropdown list and you can see we can actually go through and choose a different area on our system, a different folder. We can choose the Desktop, our User folder; we can go through the whole hierarchy here inside of this list.
However, I'm going to keep it set to catalog images because that's actually where I want to perform the search. Down here we can set parameters for our Criteria. It's defaulting to Filename, which is a very commonly used criteria item. But if you click on the list, there are all kinds of different items inside of here. Some of the more common ones are listed up here at the top. Things like Date Created, Date Modified, File Size and Document Type. These are ones that you will probably use the most. If you scroll down the list here, you will see there are all kinds of other stuff, some that you may never use.
Okay, there are all kinds of excess information, things that are embedded into the file by your camera. We also have all metadata you can search and there are things up here, things like Copyright Notice, and this is something you can actually add to the file as you download it. Okay, so you may want to actually perform your search by copyright at some point. Things like Bit Depth, Color Mode, Color Profile, all things about the photograph. But the ones that I want to focus on here are actually in the middle of list and that is Keywords, Labels, and Ratings. These are things that you can add to your images here in Bridge and then use them later to narrow down a search for specific items.
So I'm going to go ahead and choose Keywords. In here, we have some more options. If we choose to click on this set of double arrows, we can reveal this list. We have all of these options: contains, does not contain, starts with and so on and so forth. I just wanted to make you aware of these different options in case you have a very specific search that you want to perform. We're going to stick with this default, which is contains. Then enter the text that's in the keyword. All right. Now, I went ahead and set up some keywords. You can actually see them over here in the Keywords panel on the right. You can see it says Enzo year 1 and Enzo year 2.
So let's say I want to perform a search within the catalog images folder for the keyword Enzo, and only display those images that have this keyword tag applied. The next thing I want to do is actually add to my search criteria. I can do that by clicking this Plus icon over here. That brings up a whole second row here and we can choose more criteria and narrow down our search even further. Next thing I want to choose is rather than Filename, go down here to Rating. Okay, again, we have more options in here as you can see. I'm going to stick with the default, which is equals. It is the more common one that you will probably use. Then in this dropdown list, it shows us all of the available ratings that you can apply here in Bridge. Reject, No Rating and then, of course, the 5-star rating system, 1-5.
Right now I want to search for just images that I gave the 5-star rating to. So the idea here is that I want to search for images that contain the Enzo keyword and have a 5-star rating applied. Now, this is very important over here where it says Results Match. You have the option to search if any criteria are met, which is the less specific option, or we can choose if all criteria are met. Okay, and that is the one that I want to choose, because I want only images with the Enzo keyword tag and the 5-star rating.
If I choose the other option, it's going to show everything that has this tag and everything that has the 5-star rating. Okay, that's not narrow enough of a search. We also have Include all Subfolders. If you check this option, and you have subfolders within the folder that you're currently searching in, it will go ahead and search inside of the subfolders as well. Now, in this instance this does not apply, because we do not have any subfolders. All right, but if we did, and we wanted to search in them, we could actually turn this on, rather than performing a separate search inside of that subfolder.
We also have the Include Non-indexed Files option, and it gives you this little warning in here, and this is important to notice, it says, may be slow, and it is incredibly slow. If you turn this on, it is actually going to search throughout your system here. We don't need to do that. Okay, so we're not going to turn that on and in fact, I don't recommend that you ever use this feature, unless you have lots and lots of time on your hands to wait. Okay, so I wouldn't turn this on. All right, the next thing I want to do is go ahead and click the Find button. It's going to go through that folder, catalog images, which is in our exercise files, and then only display the images that have the Enzo tag applied, either one of these tags. Enzo year 1 or Enzo year 2, and the 5-star rating. So that's why we're seeing every image in here in the Content panel has five stars underneath it.
Okay, so it did great job performing that search. All right, now the Find dialog box and the Find function is a great way to locate specific images and it can be used hand-in-hand with the Filter panel, because some of that stuff that we do we can actually do with the Filter panel as well. But the thing about the Filter panel is it doesn't contain as much search criteria as the Find dialog box. For instance, things like Filename are not listed in here in the Filter panel. Things like Keywords and Ratings are, so you can use that as an alternative to the Find dialog box. But other things are only available in the Find dialog box. So it goes, I think, hand-in-hand with the Filter panel and that's how I like to use it.
So what we learned here is that we can use the Find dialog box to locate specific images that we want to work with and we can set up very specific search criteria in order to do so.
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