Join Jan Kabili for an in-depth discussion in this video Renaming files the right way, part of Photoshop Elements 14 Essential Training.
- Let's talk about changing names of files that you brought into an Elements Catalog. Some people like to change the names of their files because the file names that come out of the camera aren't very meaningful. They're just a combination of letters and numbers like this. Now first of all, I want to say that I don't change the names of my files. I leave them as they are and there's a reason for that. It's to avoid ever duplicating the files in my Catalog by mistakenly importing them again from a memory card that I haven't reformatted. But, if you do like to change your file names, you're welcome to do so.
The caveat is, once you've imported files into an Elements Catalog, you should never change the file names outside of Elements because that can break the link between the Organizer Catalog in Elements and the actual files. I hope you remember, as I explained earlier in the course, that when you import photos into an Elements Catalog, you're not actually bringing in the photos, the photos remain wherever you normally keep them. You're just bringing information about the photos into the Catalog, which is like a big database or a big index of information about the photos, including the file names.
So, if you are going to change file names, you need to change those file names from inside the Organizer, inside the Catalog, with all of that information, so that Elements can keep track of that change. So how do you change file names from inside Elements? Well, if you want to change just a single file name, here's how I would do it. You'll click on the photo in the Organizer. I've selected this night photo shot in Copenhagen, and then, I'll come down and choose Keyword/Info, and in the Information panel, in the General section, notice that there's a Name field.
All you have to do is type over the Name field here. Now before you change that Name, maybe I want to hold on to it just for reference, I'm going to select it and copy it by pressing ctrl + c, that's cmd + c on a Mac, and then I'm going to click in the Notes field, and hold down the ctrl key, or the cmd key on a Mac, and press the v key for paste, and now, I'm going to come in and just type over the Name. I'll leave the jpg extension there, I'll click to the right of the number, and I'll backspace, or delete, and then I'll type in the name that I want.
So, this was shot in Copenhagen and it is Tivoli Gardens, so I'll type that, and if I want, I can even type a number, maybe 0001. When I click out of that field, I'll go ahead and click in the Caption field, notice that the Name of the file has changed over here in the Media browser. By the way, if you don't see the file names here, remember, as I've told you several times, you can go up to the View menu, and make sure that File Names is selected there. So that's a quick way to change the name of one file, but what if you have many files and you want to change the names of a lot of files, but of course you don't want them all to have the same name.
I'm going to scroll up a bit, and just as an example, I have three photos here but you could have 103 photos. You'll select one of those, and then select the others as well. If I hold down the shift key and click the last photo, that will select all in between. This time, I'm going to go to the File menu at the top of the Organizer, and from here, I'll choose Rename, and in the window that appears, I can type a Common Base Name, a word or a couple of words that will be applied to all the photos. These were shot in Copenhagen, and then I'll type a "-".
They were shot at a place called nyhavn, which is this wharf. I've probably butchered that name, I apologize if you're Danish, and then, I'm just going to click OK. Now, take a look at the file names under these three photos. They also say cop for Copenhagen, and then a "-", and then, the name of the wharf, and here's the important part, they automatically each have a number, and that number is sequential. So there's a 1, and a 2, and a 3. So, that's how you can rename many photos at once, or just a single photo here in the Media Room in the Organizer, but remember, rename your photos from inside the Organizer, and not out in your operating system.
- Importing photos selectively and in bulk
- Cropping photos
- Adjusting lighting and color
- Correcting red-eye and pet-eye quickly
- Resizing photos in Guided Edit
- Merging a panorama
- Building a layered file in Expert Edit
- Making selections in Expert Edit
- Organizing photos by people, places, and events
- Exporting photos
- Sharing photos via email and social media