P: When selecting a collapsed stack, provide option to apply changes to all photos in the stack

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Community Beginner ,
May 30, 2014 May 30, 2014

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In Lightroom 5.4, if I select a collapsed stack of photos in the Library module, I would like the option to automatically apply changes (e.g. metadata) to all photos within that stack.

Background: as a first-time Lightroom user, I used the auto-stacking feature so that my 3-shot bracketed (i.e. HDR) photos would be stacked together. With the stacks collapsed, I went through my library, selected multiple stacks, and typed in a GPS location to be applied to those photos. I assumed that by selecting the (collapsed) stacks, the metadata would be applied to all photos within those stacks. However, the GPS locations were only applied to the first photo within each stack.

After the fact, I learned that stacks must be expanded in order to select all photos within the stack. From my perspective, this defeats the purpose of creating stacks - if one must expand the stack to apply changes to all photos within the stack, there doesn't seem to be much point of creating stacks in the first place.

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55 Comments
LEGEND ,
May 30, 2014 May 30, 2014

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I agree with your feature request. It's been made a number of times before for several years, so I think it is unlikely that Adobe will act on it. Meanwhile, you might check out the Syncomatic plugin, which will copy metadata from the top of stack to the rest of pics in the stack:

http://www.photographers-toolbox.com/...

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LEGEND ,
Jun 01, 2014 Jun 01, 2014

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John R. Ellis wrote:
|>" It's been made a number of times before for several years, so I think it is unlikely that Adobe will act on it."

I thought you were going to say "..., so it must be getting near the top of the list by now" ;-}.

PS - RelativeAntics is another plugin which supports transferring develop settings and/or metadata to other stack members.

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 01, 2014 Jun 01, 2014

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Thanks for passing along those suggestions! Obviously, I would rather have this feature added to Lightroom versus using a plugin as a workaround, but at least there *is* a workaround...

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LEGEND ,
Nov 08, 2015 Nov 08, 2015

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When I select a collapsed stack of photos and enter some keywords, these kewords are only applied to the top (visible) picture. Seems as if only the top picture is selected, not the whole stack underneath.
The same behaviour can be observed when selecting the collapsed stack and convert to dng. Only the top picture gets converted.

Is this intended behaviour?
I think it's a bit awkward to first expand the stack, do something and then collapse it again...

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New Here ,
Nov 08, 2015 Nov 08, 2015

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reject photos, stack them, collapse the stack & delete rejected photos. Rejected photos in the stack aren't removed.

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Participant ,
Nov 08, 2015 Nov 08, 2015

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When images are stacked, and the stack is collapsed; Provide a way to apply metadata changes to the enitire stack without having to expand the stack. Let's say I want to add a keyword to 3 stacked images. As it is now I need to expand the stack, then highlight all images in the stack (click on first, then shift-click on the last), then make the keyword change I want (say click the check box on a Keyword in the Keyword list) which will apply the change to the selected images. Now, I need to re-collapse the stack.

What I'd like to do is highlight image(s), some of which may be top of collapsed stacks, then in some way tell LR if I want my next change to apply to just the selected images or to the selected images and all images under them in collapsed stacks. Perhaps a toggle somewhere that affects this behaviour.

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Explorer ,
Feb 20, 2016 Feb 20, 2016

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Agreed. This is still not added in Lightroom 6.4, which is sad, because it shouldn't be too difficult to build in.

I always find myself going through my folders after culling&rating, finding stacks and re-applying flags/keywords/ratings/labels to pictures inside the stack, copying them from the topmost picture. It's cumbersome, time consuming, and from what I know an easy problem to solve without adding (much) overhead to either the program or other users.

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LEGEND ,
Feb 20, 2016 Feb 20, 2016

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I too wish this were available in LR. Meanwhile, check out the Syncomatic plugin, which gets the job done.

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Explorer ,
Feb 22, 2016 Feb 22, 2016

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It goes against my principles to go and pay for something to add a function as mundane as what's being requested here. Even if the plugin were free, it makes total sense to have this function in LR natively.

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New Here ,
Mar 28, 2016 Mar 28, 2016

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Please add a preference to treat changes to a stacked top image to cascade to the rest of the stack's images. I stack dozens of bracketed shots when scrubbing and cannot stand having to expand the set to apply keywords, delete the stack, etc. I realize people use stacks in various ways, but I use them mostly for bracketed shots and pano sets when every shot within the stack is essentially considered 1 'shot' for my purposes. I want to be able to treat a stack as a group--even when the stack remains collapsed--when working with it. For example, delete the entire stack (bracketed or pano shots), apply the same keyword(s) to every image in a stack, or move the entire stack (to a diff file location) when the action is performed on the top-most image in the stack. This would GREATLY improve workflow efficiency when people use stacks for sets intended to be output to a single image (HDR, pano, etc). Perhaps a preference of how to handle stacked images (i.e. Stacks: Cascade all non-develop changes and operations to all images in the stack--deleting, moving, keywording, rating, etc). But having hundreds of stacks and then having to expand them individually to do basic operations just considerably limits the usefulness of stacks. And as someone who may have 100's of single images as well as 100 bracketed sets of 5-7 images each tends to make me want to pull my hair out during basic workflow operations.

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Participant ,
Mar 28, 2016 Mar 28, 2016

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I got enormous amounts of images in my daily folders. The amount clutters the view so I'd like to be able to stack before I apply keywords. But then only the top image is tagged.

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LEGEND ,
Mar 28, 2016 Mar 28, 2016

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There are two imperfect workarounds:

- Before making the change (e.g. applying a keyword), shift-click the stack-count badge in the upper-left corner of the thumbnail. That will expand the stack and select all the photos in it.

- Use the Syncomatic plugin.

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Contributor ,
Mar 28, 2016 Mar 28, 2016

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Well said.  My problem exactly.

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Explorer ,
Mar 29, 2016 Mar 29, 2016

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Shift+click only works as long as the user happens to be holding the mouse. Grabbing the mouse just for this, is not good for usability. And as it so happens, when flagging/rating/labelling, chances are the user isn't holding the mouse.

Syncomatic is irrelevant here. This is a feature request for Lightroom.

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Participant ,
Mar 29, 2016 Mar 29, 2016

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Plugins Schmugins. Either we request a feature or use plugins. I hate third party plugins. Before you know we go to Windows 20 on 128 bit and I need to buy all shizzle again. Big no.

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LEGEND ,
Mar 29, 2016 Mar 29, 2016

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"Shift+click only works as long as the user happens to be holding the mouse."

Fully agree, which is why I called these imperfect workarounds. I was the second person to vote for the request, and I've posted a popular request for broader improvements to LR's handling of stacks.

However, many people come to these forums looking for help in making LR work more efficiently for them, and, needing to get work done now, many find workarounds better than the status quo.  So including workarounds in discussions of problems and ideas for improvement is entirely appropriate.

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Participant ,
Apr 24, 2017 Apr 24, 2017

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I would like to suggest the option for stacked images in Lightroom to have the option for adjustments to apply to all images in the stack instead of just the top one as now. The default could stay as it is currently, but a tick box could be applied to change this to 'all images in the stack'.

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LEGEND ,
Jan 03, 2018 Jan 03, 2018

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hi, i use stacks extensively to group RAW and jpegs from that raw file ...  sometimes i just want to reject the whole stack and it's not possible.  it's really cumbersome to do it with every iteration of an image i know i want to reject/

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Adobe Employee ,
Jan 03, 2018 Jan 03, 2018

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A popular request...
In the meantime here are some cool ideas for working with stacks:

https://forums.adobe.com/thread/719766

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Explorer ,
Jan 03, 2018 Jan 03, 2018

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I agree, good idea. It would be a time saver!
How about Alt/Option X, U, P for flags?
Steve Gandy
Photographer - Instructor
stevegandy.com

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Explorer ,
Jan 04, 2018 Jan 04, 2018

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I say without Alt/Option. You've selected *the stack*, so any modification you make should logically be applied to the stack, not just the picture that happens to be the first in the stack.

When you hand out candy to a school class, you don't give candy only to the first child 🙂

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Explorer ,
Jan 04, 2018 Jan 04, 2018

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But how does Lr know you are referring to the stack or the top image then?
Steve Gandy
Photographer - Instructor
stevegandy.com

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New Here ,
Jan 04, 2018 Jan 04, 2018

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Allow a set of Stack preference configs (like I mentioned in my post a long time ago in this thread) to apply operation to a collapsed stack. Could also be done through a dialog box at time of operation. A key condition would be whether or not the stack is collapsed or expanded. This has GOT to get fixed as there are just too many situations in the normal workflow that really need Stack enhancements (HDR sets, bracketing sets, focus stacking sets, etc). If taking numerous sets of 7-shot exposure-bracketed sets, you'd likely want to flag keeper sets, rejected sets, etc. And for focus stacking the need to efficiently use Stacks is even more critical.

Give the user preference options of how to work with keywords, ratings, color tagging, etc with Stacks--please!!

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Explorer ,
Jan 05, 2018 Jan 05, 2018

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> But how does Lr know you are referring to the stack or the top image then?

Because the stack is either collapsed or expanded. When expanded, you're selecting individual images. When collapsed, you're selecting the whole stack. This is how it is visually, and it makes total sense, so that's how it should be functionally as well.

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Explorer ,
Jan 05, 2018 Jan 05, 2018

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You don't know how the programming is done from the get go. Adding a key might make it an easy fix. Having the program determine whether the stack is closed or open might make it a lot more difficult. Or vice versa. It is a good idea, let's see if they implement it.
Steve Gandy
Photographer - Instructor
stevegandy.com

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