How to organize photos like a pro: the best way to make sense of your collection

How to organize photos like a pro: the best way to make sense of your collection

Is your hard drive heaving with uncatalogued images? Discover the best way to organize photos and stay on top of your growing archive! In this tutorial we’ll show you how to organize photos like the pros by adding copyright information, metadata templates, keywords and much more.

How to organize photos like a pro: the best way to make sense of your collection

When browsing images in Bridge you may have noticed the Metadata tab, which lists useful information about each shot. This is because as well as recording the image and file name, your camera saves metadata, which follows the Exchangeable image file format (EXIF).

The literal meaning of metadata is ‘data about data’, and for digital images the metadata holds key information, such as the date of creation, the make and model of camera and key camera settings.

A sub-set of metadata, in a format developed by the International Press Tele-communications Council (IPTC), contains information about the image’s creator and copyright.

Unlike the camera settings data, which is set at point of capture, IPTC metadata is editable, so it can be set by the photographer or whoever owns the image copyright. Once you’ve created a metadata template you can even add this information automatically as the image is imported onto your computer’s hard drive.

Photographers can also add keywords to describe the content of images. These can be general subjects such as events, people and places, but sub-keywords can include birthdays, names, cities etc, and can be used to make finding specific images easier.

Once a template or keyword has been appended to an image it stays there, so if the image is sent or saved anywhere new the key information is still available.

PAGE 1: How to organize photos the professional way
PAGE 2: How to organize photos using filters
PAGE 3: How to create a metadata template
PAGE 4: How to automate your metadata edits
PAGE 5: How to organize photos with keywords


8 photo management tips you can’t afford to ignore
Blend Modes: the 10 best blends for photographers (and how to use them)
Photoshop Layers Demystified: a beginner’s guide to smarter photo editing
Adobe Lightroom: what every photographer must know about the ‘alternative Photoshop’
32 things photographers say… and what they really mean