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In Photoshop CS5 Essential Training, author Michael Ninness demonstrates how to produce the highest quality images with fantastic detail in the shortest amount of time, using a combination of Photoshop CS5, Adobe Bridge, and Camera Raw. This course shows the most efficient ways to perform common editing tasks, including noise reduction, shadow and highlight detail recovery, retouching, and combining multiple images. Along the way, Michael shares the secrets of non-destructive editing, utilizing and mastering Adobe Bridge, Camera Raw, layers, adjustment layers, blending modes, layer masks, and much more. Exercise files are included with the course.
There's an additional organizational feature in Bridge that comes in handy quite often, especially when you're dealing with large volumes of images. You may want to group them into stacks of images that are related in some way. So using the combination of the Stacks command with the Filter panel can clean up or reduce the amount of space any particular set of images takes in the Content panel. Let's see this at work. So let's go to our Keywords section here in the Filter panel, and this particular set of images has some keywords embedded in the metadata.
So let's click on the word Maija, and it filters the current view to only show you the pictures of Maija. So I'm going to go ahead and select these six images by clicking on the first one, then holding down the Shift key and clicking on the last one. That selects everything in between. And then I want to use the Stack command. Now, of course there's a keyboard shortcut, before I teach you that, under the Stacks menu is Group as Stack, and if you're used to other Adobe products, like Illustrator or InDesign or something like that, you know the Group command is just Command or Ctrl+G.
So I can do that or just use the menu command. What happens is it shrinks all those selected images up into a single icon and gives you a number letting you know how many images are in that particular stack. Now, if I turn off the Maija filter inside the Filter panel, you'll see it takes us back to the Content panel and it's maintaining that stack as an organizational concept here. When you click on the stack, if you take a look at the Preview panel, it actually does show you all the thumbnails that are in that stack.
It just fills that space available in Preview panel. So if the Preview panel was a little bit larger, those thumbnails would be larger. Or if you had say 30 images, you'd get a lot tinier thumbnails in that Preview panel. If you put your mouse over the number, it gives you a little finger. If you click on the number, it will expand the group and show you all the images in the group. If you click on the number again, it will collapse the stack. There's also a menu command and a keyboard shortcut for doing this. For those of you who just really like menu commands though, there it is: Stacks > Open Stack.
Then of course the keyboard shortcut is Ctrl+ Right Arrow or Command+Right Arrow to open the stack, Command+Left Arrow, Ctrl+ Left Arrow to close the stack. Again, I still think it's easier just to click on the number to open or close the stack. If we change our mind and we don't want that stack anymore, we can un-stack it. Before we do that though, let's go ahead and create a couple of different stacks. Let's go back to our Filter panel and click on the word Sofija. That shows us just those images. We'll go ahead and do a Select All, Command or Ctrl+A, and we'll turn this set of images into a stack as well.
Command+G, Ctrl+G, and now it tells me I've got 16 images in that stack. Let's go back to turning off the Sofija filter in the Filter panel. And now you can see the same set of images, 44 images now, have been organized a little bit tighter to group all the images that are similar. So the remaining category, in this particular set of example images, are all the images of the sisters together in the frame. So again let's click on the word Sisters in the Filter panel to select all of those. We'll do a Command+A or Ctrl+A to select the images in the Content panel, and Command or Ctrl+G, or again Stacks > Group as Stack, and there we have 22 images there.
Let's turn off the Sisters filter in the Filter panel, and now instead of seeing 44 images in 44 separate thumbnails, we see three different categories of images grouped into those stacks. A little bit more of an impact organizationally-wise if you've got hundreds or thousands of images that you're managing this way. But hopefully you get the point with this little small subset example. If you want to get back everything to being unstacked, it's pretty easy to do that as well. Go the Stacks menu and say either Expand all Stacks and that gets them back to where they were started.
We can go back to the Stacks menu and say Collapse all Stacks. If I do a Select All again, Command+A. If I actually want to eliminate the notion of this stack I can go back and say Ungroup from Stack and we're right back where we started.
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