Working with flags, stars, and labels
Working with flags, stars, and labels
One of the reasons why I like photography so much is that it just allows you to do so many different types of interesting things. I do all sorts of editorial and commercial work, but sometimes some of my favorite shoots are those which are favors, and that's what these photographs are here. Some family friends just asked if I could capture some photographs of them down at the beach, and it's really fun to do that. After this shoot, or after any type of a shoot, one of the most important steps is evaluating the pictures and trying to find the keepers, trying to kind of find the diamonds amongst the rubble, trying to find the images that are really good.
There's an art and craft to selecting or to editing photographs. And in Lightroom, in the Library Module, we can use a few tools which can really help us out. I want to show you those here. First of all, you'll need the Toolbar visible. So in the Library Module press the T key to either hide or show that. Next, click on the triangle button to turn on Flagging, Rating, and Color Label. This will show us these three fields here. Now, I have a slide which illustrates some of the shortcuts for these and I want to pull that up, because I think these shortcuts are so worth learning, because you're going to be rating and ranking your files so frequently and eventually you'll filter based on how you rate or rank your file.
So again, it's really helpful to learn these shortcuts. Here is the slide. Well, for starters you can see we have different shortcuts for Flagging; P for Pick, that's add a flag, U for Unpick or Unflag, and then X for Reject. Next, we have 0-5. Now, 0 is important here, because if we have a 2 Star rated image, the only way to remove that star is to press 0 and give it no stars. Labels, they are a little bit different. We have 6-9 for Labels. If I want to add a Red Label, I can press 6; to remove a Red Label, press 6 again. All right! Well, now that we've seen these, at least in this slide, let's go ahead and take a look at this in action.
Back in Lightroom, I'm going to select one of my images, and then I want to take it to the Loupe View Mode. So this time I'll just double-click it and it will take me to that Loupe View. You can also always just click on this Loupe button right here. Well, I want to start adding some Rating information to these photographs. There are different things that I could do. I could press P, select this as a Pick. I could give it a Star Rating, I'll press 2 for 2 Star, or I could give it a Label, press 6 for a Red Label.
And what you want to do is come up with a way to rate or rank your photographs that make sense to you. There are some photographers which use all three of these criteria, while others, they just use one, they just Flag or just Star or just Label. What I find is it's helpful to use a couple of these in combination. For example, let's say we move along through our images and we give these a few stars here. This one 1 star, that one 2 and, again, I'm just kind of randomly making some choices. And I get to a photograph like this, which is just kind of fun.
It's not necessarily a portfolio picture, but it's just fun, and they would enjoy to have a print of this. So maybe what I could do is I could give it my Star Rating, but also add a label; perhaps I use that Red Label as the Label, which will remind me later to print that picture, because at a later time we'll be able to filter or find images based on the criteria; Flag, Star, or Label that we've added. All right! Well, let's go ahead and just make our way through these pictures, again, just adding a few stars on the pictures that maybe we like and then go through the photographs.
And I'm just going quickly here to kind of illustrate how one might use these types of controls. All right! Well, after we've added those, what I want to do then is take a look at how we can display that information. Here if we press the G key, we'll go back to that Grid View. Now, currently in the Grid View, I can't see which image has a Star or not, at least at first glance. Yet, as you click around, this time I'll click on images or use the Arrow Keys, you'll notice that as I select an image, the Rating is illuminated down below.
Let's go back to that first photograph. You can see there's a Flag, couple of Stars, and also a Red Label. Another way to see more information would be to go to our various View Modes. We've already talked about this before, but it's helpful to see it again. Go to View, and then next go to View Options, and here we're in this Grid View. What we can do is Show these Grid Extras, and here you can see we now are able to see the 2 Star Rating, or we can even Tint the cells with this color, so the reds we can see.
Let's close that and you can see as we scroll through here. Let's add another Label. I'll press 7 on this one. And then this one over here I'll press 8. And again, the whole point of this is just to highlight this idea that you have different ways to be able to see what type of information you've added to your photographs. Now, how you actually make these choices, I think, is kind of important. What most photographers will tell you is that at first you want to just start adding perhaps a lower level rating, just kind of pick the ones that you think are close to being keepers, and then eventually whittle it down so you have fewer and fewer images, until you find the images which work best.
Working with flags, stars, and labels provides you with in-depth training on Photography. Taught by Chris Orwig as part of the Lightroom 4 Essentials: 01 Organizing and Sharing with the Library Module
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