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Working with image stacks

From: Lightroom 4 Image Management Workshop

Video: Working with image stacks

Sometimes a group of images really belong together. And in many cases, when you have a group of images that fit together in some way, you really don't need to be able to see all of them at any given time. In those situations, you can use an image stack to help keep your images organized and to help remove a little bit of clutter in the process. Some very obvious examples of when you might use image stacks are when you have multiple images that are part of a composite panorama, for example, or multiple images that are part of a composite depth of field or a high dynamic range image. However, there are many other examples of situations where image stacks can be helpful.

Working with image stacks

Sometimes a group of images really belong together. And in many cases, when you have a group of images that fit together in some way, you really don't need to be able to see all of them at any given time. In those situations, you can use an image stack to help keep your images organized and to help remove a little bit of clutter in the process. Some very obvious examples of when you might use image stacks are when you have multiple images that are part of a composite panorama, for example, or multiple images that are part of a composite depth of field or a high dynamic range image. However, there are many other examples of situations where image stacks can be helpful.

Here I have a series of images of horses running on the beach in late afternoon light. With this type of dynamic subject, obviously you might have a lot of misses mixed in with the good images. But even when you start filtering out those images and you're happy with a group of them, you might find that you still have a lot of sort of duplicates of images that were not exactly identical or very similar. In this case, for example, I probably would only use one or maybe two of these images in any real project. The rest are sort of extra. In theory, I could get rid of them, but I think I'd like to keep them together and keep them all organized within Lightroom.

A stack provides a great solution for this type of situation. I'll go ahead and click on the first image in this series and then I'll hold the Shift key and click on the last image. That will select all of the images within that range. I could also add additional images to the group if need be. If I hold the Ctrl key on windows or the Cmd key on Macintosh, I can then click on additional images to add them to the selection or click again to turn them off. And I can do this in between for images that are within the mix I had already selected or else ware throughout the range of images, in this case, on the film strip. Once you have the images selected that you'd like to include in a stack, you can right-click on any one of those images, and then, choose Stacking from the popup menu.

You can then Choose Group Into Stack from the submenu, and all of the images that you had selected will be grouped into a single stack. They'll effectively appear as a single image. But a single image, with an indication, at least if you've turned on the option to show the stack numbers, of that fact, that there is a stack here and how many images are in that stack. Note, by the way, that in addition to right-clicking on the image in order to access the stacking feature, you can also choose photo stacking from the menu. Of course, at times, you might want to see the individual images that are contained in a stack.

It's possible to right-click on the image and then choose Stacking. And then, for example choose Expand Stack in order to expand the stack. But if you have the stack indicator visible on the film strip you can also click on that indicator. That will expand all of the images in the stack, so that you can see them all and then you can click once again to collapse the stack. It's also possible to change which image represents the stack, in other words the top most image in that stack. Here for example the image that's on top just happens to be the first image I selected and I don't consider that to be the best image in this stack.

I happen to like this last image. So, if I right-click on that image and then choose Stacking, I can choose the option to Move To Top Of Stack. And that means, that will be the image that represents the stack. So, I'll go ahead and collapse that stack. And if I choose the stack, you'll see that that image I identified as my favorite, the topmost image, is the one that appears for the stack. So, as you can see, with a stack, we're able to collapse the appearance of all those images into a single image, which can help remove clutter and keep things a little bit more organized. Of course, at any time, if you decide that you don't want those images included in a stack, you can simply right-click and then choose Stacking and unstack those images.

In addition to unstacking all of the images, you can remove individual images from the stack. So, let's say, for example, that we only want the brown horses included in the stack. And this black horse I'd like to remove from the stack, I can right-click on that image and then choose Stacking > Remove From Stack. So, now I have one outlier image and then the nine images included as a stack. And this is just illustrating some of the many possibilities of working with stacks. As you continue to explore the use of stacks to help consolidate a group of images, I'm sure you'll find many other situations where they can prove helpful in your workflow.

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This video is part of

Image for Lightroom 4 Image Management Workshop
Lightroom 4 Image Management Workshop

45 video lessons · 1093 viewers

Tim Grey
Author

 
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  1. 1m 46s
    1. Welcome
      1m 46s
  2. 44m 45s
    1. Library module overview
      3m 20s
    2. Preferences for image management
      10m 6s
    3. Catalog settings
      7m 57s
    4. Catalog backup settings
      2m 22s
    5. Backing up with Export
      2m 56s
    6. Working with the Lightroom interface
      5m 21s
    7. Grid view display options
      6m 37s
    8. Loupe view display options
      3m 19s
    9. Working with multiple catalogs
      2m 47s
  3. 27m 50s
    1. Folder structure considerations
      3m 20s
    2. Importing existing images
      6m 53s
    3. Importing new images
      9m 36s
    4. Importing subsequent images
      4m 4s
    5. Using tethered capture
      3m 57s
  4. 28m 54s
    1. Locating images to review
      4m 10s
    2. Getting a quick overview of photos with Grid view
      3m 7s
    3. Reviewing images in detail with Loupe view
      4m 11s
    4. Zooming and panning in images
      4m 19s
    5. Using Compare view
      6m 16s
    6. Using Survey view
      3m 42s
    7. Working with videos
      3m 9s
  5. 1h 8m
    1. Configuring the toolbar
      3m 8s
    2. Picking and rejecting photos with flags
      6m 30s
    3. Assigning star ratings to photos
      5m 39s
    4. Configuring color labels
      3m 20s
    5. Using color labels to identify images
      5m 13s
    6. Auto-advancing during image review
      2m 56s
    7. Working with image stacks
      4m 33s
    8. The Quick Collection
      3m 52s
    9. Using collections to organize photos
      5m 21s
    10. Using Smart Collections
      5m 33s
    11. Basic metadata updates
      5m 8s
    12. Adding keywords to photos
      4m 35s
    13. Using the Painter tool
      3m 13s
    14. Synchronizing metadata
      2m 53s
    15. Writing metadata to images
      3m 17s
    16. Correcting capture time
      2m 51s
  6. 35m 49s
    1. Setting image sort order
      3m 54s
    2. Catalogs, folders, and collections
      2m 30s
    3. Basic image filtering
      4m 32s
    4. Advanced image filtering with the Library Filter
      8m 3s
    5. Locking the Library Filter
      2m 47s
    6. Finding images on the map
      9m 54s
    7. Dealing with offline images
      4m 9s

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