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Using the Folders panel

From: Photoshop Elements 11 Essentials: 01 Importing and Organizing Photos

Video: Using the Folders panel

The Organizer offers a number of intelligent ways to keep track of photos, like the People, Places, and Events views, Albums and Keywords, all of which I'll cover in this course. But even with all of those intelligent options, when we're looking for a particular photo, lots of us tend to think about just which folder it's in in our hard drive. So, in Elements 11, Adobe has made it easier to see and work with the folders on your hard drive from inside the Organizer. And that's done in the Folders panel, or the My Folders panel here in the Organizer.

Using the Folders panel

The Organizer offers a number of intelligent ways to keep track of photos, like the People, Places, and Events views, Albums and Keywords, all of which I'll cover in this course. But even with all of those intelligent options, when we're looking for a particular photo, lots of us tend to think about just which folder it's in in our hard drive. So, in Elements 11, Adobe has made it easier to see and work with the folders on your hard drive from inside the Organizer. And that's done in the Folders panel, or the My Folders panel here in the Organizer.

Before we look at this panel, I'd like to take you out to my hard drive to see how I've arranged some actual folders there. And then we'll come back into the Organizer to see how that arrangement looks in the Folders panel here in the Organizer. By the way, for this movie, I've switch from the Exercise Files catalog over to my catalog so you can see what the Folders panel might look like if you've taken the time to get your actual photos well organized on your hard drive before importing the photos into Elements, as I recommend you do. So now we're out on my hard drive, looking at my file structure in my Windows operating system, not in Elements.

I keep my photos in my My Pictures folder and if I click the arrow to the left of My Pictures, you can see I have another folder that I made there called My Elements Photos. I do that just to keep my Elements photos separate from whatever else is in My Pictures folder. And if I click the arrow to the left of that, you can see that I've gotten so well organized that I have folders year by year here. If I click the arrow to the left of a year, I can see all of the shoots from that year, which I'll label by date and with a word or two about the subject matter of the shoot: 2011 and 2012.

For purposes of this example, I've brought into my catalog in the Organizer all of the photos in these subfolders except for those in the 2012-10 crested butte subfolder. I'll show you why in a moment, when I go back to my Organizer, as I'm going to do now. Here in the Organizer, you can see, in the column on the left, the My Folders panel. If you don't see this, then go down to the taskbar and click Show Panel and click the arrow to the left of My Folders, and you'll be able to see whatever photos you happen to have in your My Folders panel in your own catalog.

My Folders panel is set to its default view, which is called the folder list view. Notice that this show the hierarchy of folders that we know are in my file structure. All it does show is an alphanumeric list of each subfolder that contains at least one file that I've imported to this catalog. These subfolders all contain photos that I imported from a drive or from my camera memory card. If you are wondering about the music subfolder, that contains the audio clips that come with the Organizer, and that were imported when I created this catalog.

Each of these folders has a little scene symbol on it. That scene symbol means that there is at least one item in that subfolder that's been imported into this catalog; subfolders with that symbol are called managed folders. So this is a really streamlined view of my actual folder hierarchy, and that's useful because it makes it simple to find photos according to their folders here in the Organizer. But it also limits the number of things that I can do with my files and folders from here in the Organizer.

Now, there are some things I can do in this view. I can move files between these managed folders by clicking on a file, like this one, and dragging it to another folder, like this. And that's the best way to move files. Now, there are things that I can do in this view. For example, if I click on the Sunflowers folder and I want to move one of these photos to a different folder, I can do that by clicking on the photo and dragging it to another managed folder. And then if I click on that other folder, there's the photo.

Now, that is the best way to move files, as I'll explain later in this chapter. But what if I wanted to move a photo to a folder that doesn't appear here, a folder that's in my folder hierarchy but that isn't yet part of this Organizer catalog? I can't do that here. And there are a number of other things like that that I can't do without having access to my non-managed folders. So, fortunately, there is another view of folders here in the Organizer, and that's called the hierarchical folder view. To access that view, I'm going to click this little icon to the right of the My Folders label on the My Folders panel, and that takes me to the hierarchical view.

Here, I can see a path down through all of my folders and subfolders to my 2011-01 Santa Fe subfolder, the one that is managed. And this hierarchical view even shows me non-managed folders in that path, which are all of these folders that do not have that little scene icon on them. So here I can do things that I can't do back in the folder list view. For one thing, I can make a new subfolder and move files into that non-managed new subfolder.

So if I right-click in the 2011 folder, for example, and I choose New Folder--I'll make a new folder called 2011-08 Sunflowers--and I'll go back to my Santa Fe, I'll get that Sunflowers folder, and I'll drag it into this non-managed folder. That not only moves the sunflower photo, it also turns that new folder into a managed folder because it now contains a photo that has been imported into this catalog. Another thing I can do is burrow down to see if there are any shoot subfolders that I'd forgotten to import into the catalog.

So, I'm going to burrow down to the 2012 folder by clicking the Plus symbol to the left of it. And there I see two subfolders. These are managed subfolders from these two shoots. If I right-click on the 2012 folder, I can ask Elements to show me all the subfolders there, even those that are not managed. And it does so. And I can see that there is a non-managed subfolder from my Crested Butte shoot, and I can even import that photo directly, without having to go up to the Import button and choosing From Files and Folders and navigating back to that crested butte folder.

All I have to do is right-click on the crested butte folder and choose Import Media, and that will import just the files in that subfolder. That changes the view here in the grid to just the photos I've just imported from Crested Butte. And if I click the Back button, I'll go back to see all the photos in this catalog. And if I come back down here and click the Plus symbol next to the 2012 folder, I now have a managed crested butte folder. So there is a lot more that you can do in the hierarchical folders view, but its also more complicated.

So if I want to go back to the streamlined view, I'll just go up to the icon to the right on the Folders label and I'll click there to display the folders list view. And this is where I do most of my work when I am in the Organizer. So, as you can see, you do have direct access to your folders here in the Elements Organizer, and both of the folder views serve a purpose. This folder list view, the default view, is streamlined and simple to use. And the hierarchical folder view gives you even more options for working with your folders and files from inside the Organizer.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 18m 57s
    1. Welcome
      46s
    2. What is the Organizer?
      3m 1s
    3. Touring the Organizer
      4m 29s
    4. Moving between Organizer and Editor
      4m 55s
    5. Working with catalogs
      5m 46s
  2. 21m 4s
    1. Importing the exercise files
      2m 50s
    2. Importing photos from your computer
      4m 37s
    3. Importing photos from your camera
      7m 56s
    4. Importing photos from iPhoto (Mac only)
      5m 41s
  3. 33m 25s
    1. Viewing photos
      3m 37s
    2. Displaying photo names and dates
      1m 0s
    3. Adjusting photo dates and times
      3m 33s
    4. Sorting photos
      2m 41s
    5. Rating photos
      5m 6s
    6. Viewing metadata in the Information panel
      3m 13s
    7. Adding photo captions
      1m 45s
    8. Hiding and showing photos
      2m 54s
    9. Stacking related photos
      5m 8s
    10. Applying instant photo fixes
      4m 28s
  4. 19m 43s
    1. Viewing a simple slideshow
      4m 51s
    2. Comparing photos side by side
      4m 30s
    3. Applying Quick Edit options
      5m 36s
    4. Applying Quick Organize options
      4m 46s
  5. 27m 30s
    1. Using the Folders panel
      7m 19s
    2. Moving and renaming files
      3m 38s
    3. Reconnecting missing files
      4m 14s
    4. Moving and renaming folders
      3m 48s
    5. Deleting files and folders
      4m 2s
    6. Using a watch folder to import new files (Windows only)
      4m 29s
  6. 10m 14s
    1. Creating albums
      5m 53s
    2. Organizing albums
      2m 38s
    3. Making instant albums from folders
      1m 43s
  7. 14m 56s
    1. Creating and organizing keyword tags
      6m 38s
    2. Applying keyword tags
      4m 59s
    3. Finding photos by keyword and Advanced Search
      3m 19s
  8. 23m 3s
    1. Identifying people automatically
      5m 55s
    2. Identifying people manually
      3m 1s
    3. Viewing people
      3m 47s
    4. Grouping people
      3m 10s
    5. Working with people tags
      7m 10s
  9. 9m 13s
    1. Creating events manually
      6m 48s
    2. Creating Smart Events
      2m 25s
  10. 9m 52s
    1. Viewing mapped photos by location
      5m 47s
    2. Adding location data to photos
      4m 5s
  11. 22m 2s
    1. Using the Find menu
      3m 36s
    2. Finding photos by metadata
      5m 31s
    3. Saving smart searches
      5m 3s
    4. Finding photos by visual similarity
      5m 56s
    5. Finding photos in the Timeline
      1m 56s
  12. 3m 22s
    1. Don't forget to back up
      2m 16s
    2. Next steps
      1m 6s

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