Join Tim Grey for an in-depth discussion in this video Batch renaming, part of Bridge CC for Photographers.
The file names assigned by our digital cameras aren't all that meaningful. In most cases, you'll have an IMG for image, then an underscore, followed by what is essentially a serial number. Or a sequence number. Different cameras, of course, may use a different set up for that file name. But the bottom line is that that default file name doesn't describe the contents of the image or anything about the photoshoot. It can be helpful therefore, to rename your images to better reflect the contents. This can be especially helpful if you'll send your images to others for review.
So here I have a group of images that were captured in Croatia. They're in a Croatia folder but the file names are those that came out of the camera, and so they're not all that meaningful. To rename these images the first thing I need to do is to select all of the photos. I can do that by going to the Edit menu and then choosing Select all. Or by pressing Control+A on the keyboard for Windows users or Cmd+A on the keyboard for MacIntosh users. I'll go ahead and choose select all. And now all of these images are selected. It's worth noting by the way that the sequence order here will effect the final file names because I'll be including a sequence number as part of that file name and so if I want the images to be numbered in a particular order, I need to sort those images first but generally speaking sort by file name will sort the images in the order that they were captured and that usually works pretty well.
So, with those images selected, I'll go to the Tools menu, and then choose Batch Rename. That will bring up the Batch Rename dialogue. Notice that I can choose from a preset if I'd like. Of course, I could save a preset after establishing my settings by clicking on the Save button. But the most recently used settings will be preserved and so, in most cases, you can just simply work from your existing setup. In the destination folder section, we can choose if we want to rename the images in the exact same folder, move the images to another folder, or copy the images to another folder. In most cases, I'll simply rename exactly where the images are because I don't need to move or copy them in the process generally speaking. Then I can specify the file name structure that I want to use. I can start off by clicking the pop up for the first line here for example. You can see that it's currently set to text.
I can also add a sequence number, I can use the existing file name, I can use a folder name. In this case, I'll use text though and then I can type into the text box the value that I want. In this case, I want to rename all these images to reflect the fact that they were captured in Croatia, so I'll type Croatia. I also I have another text item, this being a dash, to separate the word Croatia from the sequence number and I already have a sequence number established as an additional item, here. And over toward the right, I can specify how many digits I want to use. I'll use 4 digits in this case, and then I can specify the initial number. And of course, since this folder represents all of my Croatia images, I'll start that numbering with 1.
If I want to add additional elements to my file name structure, I can click the plus button in order to add a new row. And then I choose a particular item from the pop-up, for example, the date and time. Maybe the date and time the images were created and a particular format. But in this case I don't want to have the date and time included as part of that file name structure. And so I'll simply click the minus button to remove that element from the file naming structure. I can also choose to preserve the existing file names in the XMP metadata if I'd like to. Generally speaking, I don't feel the need to take advantage of this option. But if you may have referenced those file names somewhere else previously, it could be a good idea to preserve those file names.
You can also insure that the file naming structure that you've utilized is compatible with various operating systems. Because I'm working on a Windows system at the moment, the Windows option is turned on and disabled. I can't create file names on a Windows system. that are not compatible with Windows. But I could also turn on the Mac OS and Unix options if I want to make certain that my file naming structure is compatible with those remaining operating systems. For example, different operating systems have different characters that are not allowed.
And so by turning on these check boxes you'll make sure that that's not the case. Down below you can see that I have a preview of my file rename operation. I can see the current file name for one of my images, as well as the new name that that image will receive. Everything looks good. And so now, I can simply click the Rename button and all of those images will be renamed with more meaningful file names.
- Downloading images
- Using workspaces
- Navigating among photos
- Rotating images
- Rejecting and deleting photos
- Using Review mode
- Batch renaming
- Working with metadata
- Sorting, searching, and filtering
- Presenting photos as a slideshow