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Now that we have a good working understanding of Lightroom catalogs, I find it helpful to discuss and to differentiate Lightroom catalogs from folders and collections. Well, for starters, you can think of the catalog kind of as something that organizes everything. It's up at the top. It's distinct to Lightroom. And here we have a little graphic, which represents a catalog. Well, how then does a catalog differentiate from folders or collections? Well, one of the things that we know about folders is that folders can live on a hard drive.
They are independent of Lightroom. There can be a physical location where a file is saved, and in a sense you want to think of folders as something that's really physical. Now we can have folders on one hard drive, or we can have folders on multiple hard drives. Again, this is just something in regards the way that computers work. We can have folders inside of folders. These are these physical locations where files live. Now Lightroom in its catalog can understand folder location, yet it can go beyond that.
It can go even further, and that's where we get into the topic of collections. Now what's interesting about collections is collections are distinct and unique to Lightroom. Now the Lightroom catalog understands and knows what collections are, and they're completely different than folders, and here's how. I like to think of collections as king, or at least as that power that a king has, right. They can grab from all different hard drives or folders or subfolders--you name it--and it can bring over images into a collection.
Now in Lightroom, we don't necessarily see where this image was saved, and that's the whole point. Collections give us freedom. They give us the ability to organize our images in a way that isn't contingent upon hard drive or file or folder structure or location. So here, you can see we have these distinct parts. Again, a catalog inside of it contains information about folders and images. It also contains information about collections. All right, well now that we understand how this works conceptually, let's dig a little bit deeper, and let's do so in the next movie.
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