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managing-keywords-lightroom-video-tutorial Post Production Tips

How to Manage Keywords and Keyword Hierarchies in Lightroom 3

By Pye Jirsa on May 17th 2011

(The Lightroom video tutorial in this post is just under the introductory text below. The working files for this article can be downloaded below.)

Similar to how we created Collection Sets with sub-collections, keywords work the same way with Keyword Hierarchies. Keyword Hierarchies can have the same parent/child relationships, however unlike Collection Sets which are contained within the catalog, Keyword Hierarchies can be exported along with the images just like standard Keywords.

So, in this Lightroom video tutorial we are going to be covering how to create Keyword Hierarchies as well as manage our keywords lists by renaming, deleting and modifying our keywords.

Enjoy!

Exercise File Download Links:

Note: These images have been provided to the SLR Lounge users courtesy of Lin and Jirsa Photography and Undfind for educational purposes only.

Full RAW Exercise Files (552MB) – For faster connections. The full RAW files will allow you to follow the tutorials while achieving the exact same results as shown.
JPEG Exercise Files (129MB) – For slower connections. The JPEG files will allow you to follow the tutorials, although the results may vary due to not having the image details of the full RAW file.
Lightroom Catalog – Contains all of the changes, edits made within this article.

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Post Production Pye
SLR Lounge Senior Editor
Partner of Lin and Jirsa Photography

This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links, however, this does not impact accuracy or integrity of our content.
About

Founding Partner of Lin and Jirsa Photography and SLR Lounge.

Follow my updates on Facebook and my latest work on Instagram both under username @pyejirsa.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. photoExodus photoExodus

    Thanks for sharing this post . its really helpful.
    Image post processing services

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  2. Tim Makins

    Hello Pye – thanks for your article – lots of useful ideas there. I’d just like to mention that for those people who want an off-the-shelf hierarchical list for Lightroom, they will find quite a selection of them on my website, along with information about keywording, some useful free keywording tools, free specialist lists, plus comparisons of all the major commercial keyword catalogs, including mine. Please visit:
    http://www.photo-keywords.com/keywording-resources.php

    Regards, Tim Makins

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  3. Anonymous

    Hello, Pye—

    I’ve run into a glitch regarding Hierarchies. As I understood it, when a lower-level child keyword is applied to a photo, all the keywords above it in the hierarchy will also be applied. But for some reason my keyword hierarchies aren’t behaving that way. When I tag an image in this manner, the child keyword is the only word applied. Admittedly, I organized my hierarchy from a flat list, as opposed to building it within the Keywording panel (parent > child1 > child 2), but would that circumvent this function? (I reorganized the flat list within the Keyword List, using the drag-and-drop method to build the hierarchy.)Hopefully this description makes sense, and is a drop-kick to answer! Thanks—

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  4. Anonymous

    Hello, Pye—

    I’ve run into a glitch regarding Hierarchies. As I understood it, when a lower-level child keyword is applied to a photo, all the keywords above it in the hierarchy will also be applied. But for some reason my keyword hierarchies aren’t behaving that way. When I tag an image in this manner, the child keyword is the only word applied. Admittedly, I organized my hierarchy from a flat list, as opposed to building it within the Keywording panel (parent > child1 > child 2), but would that circumvent this function? (I reorganized the flat list within the Keyword List, using the drag-and-drop method to build the hierarchy.)Hopefully this description makes sense, and is a drop-kick to answer! Thanks—

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    • Anonymous

      Never mind, Pye!

      Please disregard the above post. After a bit more googling I was able to find the problem, which was a simple adjustment to the Library module’s Keywording pane. Once I switched the Keyword Tags drop-down from “Enter Keywords” to “Will Export”, all of the children AND parents magically appeared. 

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    • Pye

      Haha, was just about to write a response, glad you found the solution ;)

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    • Pye

      Haha, was just about to write a response, glad you found the solution ;)

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    • Anonymous

      Never mind, Pye!

      Please disregard the above post. After a bit more googling I was able to find the problem, which was a simple adjustment to the Library module’s Keywording pane. Once I switched the Keyword Tags drop-down from “Enter Keywords” to “Will Export”, all of the children AND parents magically appeared. 

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