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LightRoom: What is Smart Collections?

dbrunodbruno Member
edited August 2016 in post-processing
I was looking at the left-hand panel in LR under my "Collections", and saw this. There are a LOT of photos in there that are in their rightful collection. So, what is this thing called "Smart Collections" (which I really don't think I created), why do I have it, and does anyone else have one?

Thanks - Dave


  • TonyTTonyT Member


    Smart folders have a query attached to them, i.e. the first in your list 'Coloured Red' which will contain any images that have given a red colour tag to.

    These are the default ones but you can make your own smart collections with whatever logic query parameters you choose.

    I use capture one and have created a set of smart folders that are logical to the way I edit/process raw files. So I can load up any session and see instantly the state of the edit process for all of the pics. I use a combination of colour tags, star ratings, meta data etc. as part of the query. So the pics start at the top folder and filter down through the others as I perform certain tasks to each image.

    You can then save these out as a template and then have different templates for different work flows, I just stick with one method for what I do but I know others that use multiple templates to suit different scenarios.

  • dbrunodbruno Member
    Tony - I set up a Collection Set for each job, and have collections within that are named "candids", "foyer shots", "booths", "rejects". I separate things like that because I deal with a lot of different lightins situations in one job. I didn't create what I posted, and wondered why LR did.
  • TonyTTonyT Member
    edited July 2016

    Dave, I think these are default LR smart folders.

    Smart folders (collections) are dynamic and not just static collections that you move images to, so the content of folder  varies depending on what you do to the image.

    You could setup a colour code or star rating for 'candids', 'rejects'  etc. so when you set an image to a colour or rating it moves to the relevant folder automatically.

  • TonyTTonyT Member
    Some people use smart folders for sorting images by location as you've suggested, I use them firstly for the  raw edit process and lastly for selecting images for FB or those I want to edit further in PS (using * rating), I tend to use keywords for location if I feel its necessary.  I  find it a great way to see exactly where I was on the last edit session.
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