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Finding photos with filters

From: Up and Running with Lightroom 4

Video: Finding photos with filters

Lightroom's filters are very good at what they're designed to do, which is to help you zero in on particular assets in a potentially large catalog of photos and videos. We've touched on two kinds of Library filters in earlier movies in this chapter, the Powerful Text filter, which I covered in the context of keyword searching, and the Attribute filters which I showed in the context of reviewing photos from a shoot. A third category of filters, the Metadata filters, take advantage of the many pieces of information about your photos and videos in the active catalog.

Finding photos with filters

Lightroom's filters are very good at what they're designed to do, which is to help you zero in on particular assets in a potentially large catalog of photos and videos. We've touched on two kinds of Library filters in earlier movies in this chapter, the Powerful Text filter, which I covered in the context of keyword searching, and the Attribute filters which I showed in the context of reviewing photos from a shoot. A third category of filters, the Metadata filters, take advantage of the many pieces of information about your photos and videos in the active catalog.

You remember that a catalog is a database that contains lots of pieces of information, some of which come from your digital camera and some of which you add here in Lightroom. And the Metadata filters are great at sifting through that information. If your Library Filter bar isn't open, by the way, you can open it by going up to the View menu and choosing Show Filter bar or using the keyboard shortcut that I've been using throughout the course so far, which is the Backslash key on your keyboard. So, the first step is to select the source of files that Lightroom is going search through.

Outside of this course, the widest net that you could cast would be to search your entire catalog. And to do that, you go the Catalog panel and choose All Photographs, but I'm not going to do that. To keep things simple for this course, I've selected just a folder in the Folders panel and so Lightroom is going to search through just these particular photos. I do want to mention that if you were to choose All Photographs, that would send Lightroom out to search just the Open Catalog. Lightroom can only search one catalog at a time and that's the one that's open.

And that's a good argument for using just one catalog for all your own assets, as I recommended earlier in the course. So, now I'm ready to go to the Library filter and I'm going to click on Metadata, and that will open this drop down table of Search Criteria. Next, I'm going to go over to this menu on the right and I'm going to choose the default columns of Search Criteria, just so that we have all the same criteria showing. As you can see, the table is divided into columns, each of which is a search criterion. For example here, the criterion is the date on which photos were shot and Lightroom has already gone out and search through these files to find all the photos shot on this date, on this date, on this date, on this date and so forth.

And if I want to see the photos shot on all dates in this folder, I'll go back and click All. And then over here, Lightroom has searched these files by the camera that took the photo. So, if I wanted to see all the photos that were taken with my Nikon D90, I would click on Nikon D90. And I can narrow the search results further by also going over and clicking on a date. So, if I click on this date, I'm seeing only the photos taken with my Nikon D90 on this particular date. And then I'll go back and click all dates again.

Now, this particular columns, dates, camera, lens, and so forth are just the default columns. There are other sets of columns that you can access from this menu on the right of the Library Filter bar. For example, there is another set of columns of exposure information and this can be really useful too. For example, if I want to see photos that probably don't have much noise in them, I might go to the ISO Speed column and choose to see the photos with low ISO's. Or I can filter by aperture so I can see photos with more shallow depth of field or with longer depths of field.

And as you can see, there are other choices here, too. I'm going to go back to that default set of columns again. Now here, there is one column that I'm probably not going to use very often and that is the Label column. So, I might use this column to customize even further. If I click on any of the labels on the columns, not just the one that's called Label, I get this long list of criteria on which I can search and there are some really useful ones here. For example, if I wanted to search by file types so I could find just my JPEG's or my raw files or if I had multiple cameras of the same type I might search by camera serial number.

If my camera gathers GPS data, I can search by that so I can see where particular photos were taken. And if I search by creator, I can search by the photographer. Which reminds me that I want to thank my partner, John Lorenz who is a great professional landscape photographer for contributing these and some of the other photos that you've seen in this course alongside my own photos. Now, here's a useful tip, if I want to do the same search in another source folder, I need to first go up to the Library Filter bar and click this Lock icon.

And then, I can come over to another folder in My Folders panel or some other source like a collection or all of my photographs and click on that other source. So, I'm going to click on the folder that I used in the last course. And now, another tip which is that you can use Metadata filters in conjunction with other kinds of filters like the Powerful Text filters or the Attribute filters. So, let's say that I want to see all of the photos in this folder that I took that are photos of boats. In the Creator column, I'll click on my name as the creator and then I'll go up and click on the Text Category of filters.

I'll leave these fields set to their defaults. Any searchable fields, Contain all and I'm going to type "Boat" in this field. If you've been following along, you know that I added the keyword Boat to these photos in the last movie and so these combination of a Metadata search and a text search brings up just the photos I was looking for. So, you can see that the filters are very powerful. I hope you'll spend some time exploring the many filter combinations that you can get with the Metadata, Text, and Attribute filters in the Library module's Filter Bar.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Up and Running with Lightroom 4
Up and Running with Lightroom 4

34 video lessons · 19162 viewers

Jan Kabili
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 4m 21s
    1. Welcome
      1m 24s
    2. What is Lightroom used for?
      2m 57s
  2. 29m 45s
    1. What is a Lightroom catalog?
      5m 55s
    2. Importing the exercise files
      4m 41s
    3. Organizing your existing files before importing
      4m 8s
    4. Importing from a drive
      5m 31s
    5. Importing from a camera
      9m 30s
  3. 41m 32s
    1. Touring the Library module
      4m 56s
    2. Viewing and selecting photos and video
      5m 21s
    3. Reviewing and rating items from a shoot
      5m 33s
    4. Organizing your library with collections
      5m 10s
    5. Using keywords to organize your library
      6m 49s
    6. Finding photos with filters
      5m 37s
    7. Moving and renaming items
      8m 6s
  4. 1h 0m
    1. Touring the Develop module
      6m 35s
    2. Cropping and straightening
      4m 33s
    3. Setting white balance in the Basic panel
      6m 51s
    4. Using the Histogram to evaluate tones
      2m 37s
    5. Adjusting tonal values in the Basic panel
      8m 28s
    6. Controlling color intensity in the Basic panel
      3m 10s
    7. Reducing digital noise
      6m 37s
    8. Sharpening
      8m 15s
    9. Working with video
      6m 3s
    10. Enhancing video
      7m 32s
  5. 17m 11s
    1. Making local adjustments with the Adjustment Brush
      8m 14s
    2. Making variable adjustments with the Graduated Filter tool
      4m 13s
    3. Removing spots
      4m 44s
  6. 39m 16s
    1. Setting up a connection to Facebook
      6m 50s
    2. Sharing photos and video on Facebook
      5m 34s
    3. Printing photos
      6m 6s
    4. Creating a photo book
      5m 50s
    5. Customizing a photo book
      8m 6s
    6. Exporting photos
      6m 50s
  7. 33s
    1. Next steps
      33s

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