3. Facial Recognition
Since Lightroom 6, there’s been a built-in facial recognition tool. This can help you find images of certain people that appear in your images – it works too! To use the tool, click on the People icon at the bottom of the Library window, or press the O key. If this is the first time you’ve used it, you can choose whether you want Lightroom to search through and index your entire catalogue, or only the images and folders you’ve currently selected. Obviously, the former will take longer than the latter the first time! Once done, it will stack the images that it thinks are of the same person, and then allow you to name this person for future reference – to do so, simply click on the ? below their face and add their name. Then, clicking on their name in the top bar displays all photos found of that person.
Keywording is a great habit to get into, and the keywords that you use in Lightroom can even be embedded into the final JPEG files, making searching for the images once they’ve left Lightroom’s environment easy too. Keywords are memorable words that you embed into the image metadata. These can then be searched for using the Text tab at the top of the Library window. Keywords are easiest assigned when importing, and can be done by batch. In the Import window, simply enter the keywords, separated by a comma if multiples, in the Apply During Import tab on the right. Alternatively, they can be added in the Library module after import – this section even offers suggestions based on previous keywords.
5. Rename Folders
By default Lightroom will import images into folders named by the date on which they were taken. This is handy in the respect that you know that the newest images will be at the bottom of the folder structure, but not so useful when you want to find an image from a specific shoot, unless you remember the date! One way to improve this system is to right-click on the folder in the Navigator panel of the Library module after import and select Rename. Then, leaving the date in place (removing it will change the order of the folders), add a description after the date – simple!
Did you know that you can search your catalogue by the camera or lens you used? Or even the settings used, such as shutter speed, aperture or ISO rating? Well you can! Select the folder that you want to search in the Navigator window of the Library module. Then, at the top of the window, click on Metadata. Use the drop-down column menus to search through each field – if the field you want isn’t there, click to the top right of one of the columns and choose Add Column. Then, click on the column name and pick the field you want to search.
7. Delete Rejects
If you’re one of those people who imports and saves every single image they take, even the duds, then stop! Keeping useless images not only takes up hard drive space, but it increases the size of the Lightroom catalogue, making indexing and searching for images slower. When you’re going through your images for the first time after import, pressing the X key will flag the selected image as a reject. Then, once you’ve made your first pass through, go to Photo>Delete Rejected Photos. This will cleanse the catalogue of rejects – doesn’t that feel better?