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Adobe Lightroom Classic Collections

About Lightroom Collections

Product:  Adobe Lightroom Classic  |   Subject: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic

In this exercise, we will learn about Adobe Lightroom Classic Collections – Overview 

This section is the overview section where we talk about collections. Now collections in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom are just another way to organize your photos. The added advantage of collections over what's existing in the file system is that images can belong to more than one collection at a time. Now, the images, for example, in this Australia folder, can only exist within the Australia folder. 


But you can have these images existing in one or more collections at the same time. So it's just another way to organize your photos. The other thing you use collections for is the export modules such as the web module or the slideshow module. Any photos within that collection will get exported as a slideshow or as part of your online portfolio. 

That's one of the advantages of using collections. To begin quickly, we're going to talk about the three kinds of collections that are available to you. The collections are the regular collection, the quick collection, as well as smart collections. 

So all of the collections that you create will be created under this collections section in the left panel. The only other collection that exists up here is the quick collection, and there can only be one quick collection. I'm also pointing out this symbol next to this quick collection. That's to indicate that the quick collection is the currently targeted collection.

 We'll get to that in our subsequent sections. 

So, to quickly recap, collections are just ways for you to organize your photos differently. The added advantage of collections over the folder hierarchy is that images can belong to more than one collection at a time. And then finally, you're going to use your collections and export them either in the web module or in the slideshow module, or even export your collections as an entire catalog. I hope you're looking forward to the learning within the section. If you do have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out. I will be there as a source of support. 



  1. Collections


In this section, we're going to talk about collections. And before we work with collections, I want just to turn off a couple of things. First of all, I want to hide the navigator window. Secondly, I want to disable this option that shows all images, including the subfolder images. So to do that, I'm just going to go to the library menu here. Then I'm going to unclick the show photos in subfolders.

 Now, when you do that, you'll notice that the  192 will change to a different number. And that means that it only shows the photos that exist in this folder. It doesn't show any of the images from the subsequent folders. I did that because I wanted to give you a less cluttered view of the grid. Now in this section, we're going to talk about collections. What are collections? In an earlier section, I mentioned that there are three kinds of collections. First off, only the quick collection exists in the catalog, and there can only be one quick collection. Secondly, there's a little plus + sign next to the quick collection indicating a targeted collection. Now I'm going to cover that in a different section. Other collections you can find under the collection section on the left-hand panel. 

This collection section travels with you in the different modules. So any collections that you create here will be available to you in the develop module in the map module, and so on. If you don't have any collections already created, the first collection you're going to see is called a smart collection. A smart collection is a collection set. Now, if you open it up, you will see that this smart collection has an icon that looks like a filing box here or a shoebox to hold all of these different kinds of collections. 

Now the smart collection is a collection set. And the smart collection is just a series of filters or certain criteria that you can filter your photos. And so let's go ahead and close that up. Now, first of all, what do we want to do with collections? We want to create a new collection. We can create collections in one of these two ways: 

  1. We can create collections by clicking on the + icon here and selecting to create a collection.


  1. Or we can go to the library up here and then create a new collection by clicking on this option 



  1. Alternatively, we can use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + N for a new collection.

Now, if you create a collection without doing anything, it will create a blank collection. Let's just call it Fauna. 

Now, if we select this option to include the selected photos, it's going to include whatever photo we've selected, let's cancel this, and I'll show you what I mean. Let's go to the Australia folder, and let's click on the animals here. We're going to click on the orangutangs koala lorikeets. Here, the Pelican, the macaws, and here's a little kangaroo. Now what we're going to do now is create a collection. Let's go here and create a new collection. And we'll call this fauna. The fauna collection is going to include the selected photos. Let's go ahead and create that. And right away, it creates a new collection called fauna under the collection section with the six photos that we selected. 

Now let's go to France and see if we can find more animals, there aren't any. Let's go to India and see if we can find more animals. Yes, there are. So, we'll just select all of those with the animals. And we will add them to the fauna collection. What we're going to do is we're going to right click on the fauna collection and then Add Selected photos to this collection.

 It's very easy to add photos to the collection. Let's go ahead and add just a few more in the animals. Let's take this picture of this cat. Now we'll select these guys here. Then we'll actually click and drag and add them here as an example. So it's very easy to add photos by clicking and dragging. You'll see that the foreigner has 19 photos and includes birds and other sorts of animals that we wanted to work with. 

What is nice about working with collections is that you can do a custom sort order. Now you'll notice that the sort order down here is under custom. But let's say we wanted to do it by capture time, and the capture time sorted in one way. But we also want to have a custom order of photos. So what we're going to do is we're going to click on the photo, grab it in the middle, and put it in any order that we want. We can click on several different photos, we can have a variety of photos, and we can adjust the photos' location. This is what is considered a custom order. And you will see that the custom order adjusts itself on the filmstrip as well as on the grid. And this is very helpful for creating the kind of order that you want, especially when you will publish some of the other export modules in a way and in an order that makes sense for you. 

So to quickly recap, this lecture was about collections. We identified the quick collection, which we haven't talked about yet. We talked about the other collections within this section. Then we created a new collection called fauna, which includes photos from several different folders, and we just clicked and dragged and added those photos. So I hope this video was helpful about how to work with collections. If you have any questions about collections, please don't hesitate to reach out. I will be there as a source of support for your continued learning.


Set Target Collection"

In this section, I want to talk to you about targeted collections and how they can be very, very helpful, especially when you're working with lots of images. Now, the targeted collection is a collection that has the plus(+) sign next to it. What I mentioned earlier was that the quick collection, by default, becomes your targeted collection. The targeted collection is very handy, especially if you're working with the keyboard shortcuts.

 So let's go ahead and review the keyboard shortcuts that are available in the library module. If you recall, the keys are Ctrl + slash, and that'll bring up the menu with all of the shortcuts available in the library module.

 What we're going to be working with are the collections shortcuts. So the key, the ctrl +B key, and potentially even the Ctrl + Shift + B key. The Ctrl + Shift + B key is only applicable to the quick collection. We want to memorize the B, and the Ctrl+ B. B is to add to the target collection, and Ctrl + B is to show the target collection. So the target collection is indicated by the plus (+) sign, as you'll notice. So what if we want to make a different collection a target collection? All we're going to do is:

  1. select the collection, 
  2. next right click on it, and 
  3. Set the collection as the target collection. 


You will notice right away that the plus(+) moved from the quick collection to the fauna collection. So let's go ahead and go to the animals' folder. 

Now we're going to work with the keyboard shortcuts to add photos and images very quickly to the collection. That is the target collection. Let's go ahead, and we'll add the bird, we'll press B, it just said it added to the target collection. For now, we'll add the cat. We'll add the red panda. We'll add the panda and the little Husky. And, of course, our little friendly cat, and finally the dog. So we've added several photos very quickly with just using the B key.

 Now let's say that we don't want any of these photos. And we've added some other photos by mistake. Let's say we added this photo to the final collection by mistake. So let's go ahead and review what is inside our fauna. You'll notice that these two images don't belong in the fauna collection. So what we're going to do is we can click on this little gray button here.

 That says that it is in the target collection, or we can just click on the B key. So first off, let me just show you what I mean. If I click this, it will remove it from that collection. If I click the B key on the selected photo, remove it from the target collection. Now what's interesting about collections is that they don't affect anything on the file system. It's just something virtual stored on a database within Lightroom itself. 

To quickly recap, B will add the selected image to the target collection, in this case, foreigner, and if you click B again, it'll toggle it and remove it from the target collection. So it's very easy to work with large numbers of photos and add them to your targeted collection. I hope this video has been helpful, and if you do have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out. 

Collections Wrap Up

In this section, we're just going to quickly wrap up all of the learning we did in this section. In this section, we worked with collections. Just as a reminder, there were three different kinds of collections. There is a quick collection that exists within the catalog only. There's only one quick collection. And then there are collection sets of which the smart collections is one. Then, we created another travel collection set, which included two more regular collections. 


The good thing about working with collections is that we can have a nice custom order. We can rearrange the photos that will show up in the filmstrip that we're going to use to export in the web module or the slideshow module, or even, you know, right click on it to export this collection as its catalog. So there are so many different ways to harness the power of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom's internal mechanisms to work with your images in a way that makes sense to you. Collections are an extremely powerful way to filter through and go through a wide variety of images quickly and work with them to adds to your workflow. It speeds up your workflow. And it improves that the way you take photos, manage photos, and finally, export photos. 

So I hope this section has helped you work with collections to improve your workflow to adjust perhaps your workflow and, of course, manage very large numbers of photos. Once again, if you do have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out. I will be there as a source of support.