Managing Your Lightroom Library

Sorting Photos & Creating Favorites in Lightroom

Today we're taking a trip back to learning more about Lightroom! Specifically, how to sort, rate and label your photos as favorites to make it easy on you to find and edit only the photos you pick. Be sure to read my first article about importing and organizing your photos in Lightroom here! This will help you import correctly and make sure your library is clean and correct. 

One of the greatest benefits of Lightroom is not only do you have powerful editing tools, but you can store, sort and organize all of your photos in ONE place. You don't have to use Bridge to organize, and Photoshop to edit. LIGHTROOM gives you an all-in-one option. This is why I love it.

When I import a batch of photos through Lightroom, my next step is to sort through my photos and somehow label my favorites for further editing. Maybe you want to filter and label your photos by a certain location you were in, one specific event you imported or photos of only one of your kids. Lightroom makes this process SO simple! You can work with color labels, star ratings and flags. I like to flag the photos I want to edit. I'll go through all three processes with you and explain how to view ONLY those photos. 

How to Sort & Organize Your Favorite Photos in Lightroom -

This image above shows my Library module, and you'll see that you can go to View-Sort- and choose how to view your photos based on this favorite system. Right now they are set to sort by Rating, but we can easily switch to your flagged Pick and Label Color

How to Flag Photos in Lightroom 

  1. While clicking through photos, the shortcut to label a photo is the letter P. It will show you it's been flagged as a Pick.

  2. If I don't like the photo and want to delete it eventually, you can hit X to reject the photo. 

How to Star (Rate) Photos in Lightroom 

  1. This is simple to remember, hit numbers 1-5 to set the number of stars you want to label photos. For example, if I want a five star label I'll just press the number 5. 

  2. If you want to get rid of a rating, just hit 0 to reset the rating to zero. 

How to set Color Labels in Lightroom 

  1. Color labels start with the number six; 6-Red, 7-Yellow, 8-Green, 9-Blue and so forth. Simple press the number associated with the color label you'd like. These color labels might be helpful to organize photos into certain groupings for your to do list. Maybe red means keep it, and yellow means you want to print that photo. 

This screen shot below shows that I selected to view my photos by Color Label. I then clicked to my Develop module, and you'll see that it sorted my photos by red first, and then yellow labeled photos. 

How to Sort & Organize Your Favorite Photos in Lightroom -

I can also select multiple photos in my Library module and go to Photo-Set Flag, Set Rating or Set Color-Label to assign my favorites all at once. See my example below. 

How to Sort & Organize Your Favorite Photos in Lightroom -

Back to the idea of rejecting photos: if you go to your menu and click Photo, at the bottom of this drop-down menu, you can delete your rejected photos. Lightroom gives you a choice to Delete from Disk (delete them forever) or just Remove them from your Lightroom catalogue. For me, if I don't want the photos, I like to delete them from my disk so they aren't cluttering my computer and taking up space. 

How to Sort & Organize Your Favorite Photos in Lightroom -

Hopefully you understand now that you can get to your favorite photos quicker and easier using these different sorting tools that Lightroom has to offer! I love how fast I can narrow down photos with these simple labeling tools. Try it out and see what works best for you.