Tidying up my keywords

Community Beginner ,
Nov 20, 2020

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Hi I'm spending the current lockdown tidying my catalog. Having deleted old images that are no longer required, and sorted them as I need, I'm now investigating the keywords.

 

I've got over 100,000 images in my catalog.. When I look at the Keyword List the keywords there are very variable in use. For example shots that have my family in will have their names and I'll have hundreds of those: on the other hand I've got dozens of keywords with zero files in the whole catalog because I've now deleted files associated with them. And yet others might have a keyword with one image on it - for example a scan of an old photograph that has a specific date on it I will have added that in the keywording so that I can see it easily at a later date.

I am familiar with selecting multiple keywords, using shift or control key and then using the "-" icon at the top to delete the ones that aren't needed.

What I'm trying to work out is if there is a faster way.

The keyword list is sorted alphabetically.

 

I can't see a way to sort it by number of entries - that would instantly group all "0" use items together and let me get rid of them in a few clicks.

 

Similarly sorting by number of uses would let me click through the "low use" items to see if I wanted them at all. For example I've got one with "48 hours" - it's literally a photo of a set of signs and it happens to say "48 hours" on it. I'd keep that as it is relevant to the image. A similar image says "55 ft". I might use those keywords and keep them. Whereas an image that has a tag of "hat" which was part of a "hat fair" (festival) and one can't appreciate that it has anything to do with the festival I can get rid of that tag. Not to mention dozens of client names from files that have long been removed from the catalog and archived away.

 

I've been tagging images since I started using Lightroom so I've dozens and dozens of tags and many are going to be irrelevant now.

Short of clicking the arrow to the right of each keyword to see what it throws up, and doing multiple select and "-" icon to delete redundant keywords, is there a faster method to do it?

Thanks.

Metadata->Purge Unused Keywords

 

will delete keywords that have been assigned to zero photos.

 

I'm not aware of an automated way to clean up keywords that have 1 or more photos assigned to it.

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Tidying up my keywords

Community Beginner ,
Nov 20, 2020

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Hi I'm spending the current lockdown tidying my catalog. Having deleted old images that are no longer required, and sorted them as I need, I'm now investigating the keywords.

 

I've got over 100,000 images in my catalog.. When I look at the Keyword List the keywords there are very variable in use. For example shots that have my family in will have their names and I'll have hundreds of those: on the other hand I've got dozens of keywords with zero files in the whole catalog because I've now deleted files associated with them. And yet others might have a keyword with one image on it - for example a scan of an old photograph that has a specific date on it I will have added that in the keywording so that I can see it easily at a later date.

I am familiar with selecting multiple keywords, using shift or control key and then using the "-" icon at the top to delete the ones that aren't needed.

What I'm trying to work out is if there is a faster way.

The keyword list is sorted alphabetically.

 

I can't see a way to sort it by number of entries - that would instantly group all "0" use items together and let me get rid of them in a few clicks.

 

Similarly sorting by number of uses would let me click through the "low use" items to see if I wanted them at all. For example I've got one with "48 hours" - it's literally a photo of a set of signs and it happens to say "48 hours" on it. I'd keep that as it is relevant to the image. A similar image says "55 ft". I might use those keywords and keep them. Whereas an image that has a tag of "hat" which was part of a "hat fair" (festival) and one can't appreciate that it has anything to do with the festival I can get rid of that tag. Not to mention dozens of client names from files that have long been removed from the catalog and archived away.

 

I've been tagging images since I started using Lightroom so I've dozens and dozens of tags and many are going to be irrelevant now.

Short of clicking the arrow to the right of each keyword to see what it throws up, and doing multiple select and "-" icon to delete redundant keywords, is there a faster method to do it?

Thanks.

Metadata->Purge Unused Keywords

 

will delete keywords that have been assigned to zero photos.

 

I'm not aware of an automated way to clean up keywords that have 1 or more photos assigned to it.

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Nov 20, 2020 0
LEGEND ,
Nov 20, 2020

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Metadata->Purge Unused Keywords

 

will delete keywords that have been assigned to zero photos.

 

I'm not aware of an automated way to clean up keywords that have 1 or more photos assigned to it.

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Community Beginner ,
Nov 20, 2020

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Thanks, @dj_paige I had no idea that option existed. That's saved me an enormous bit of time consuming clicking.

 

I've resigned myself to simply looking at all the keywords and trying to do "a letter of the alphabet" in one go so that I don't try to do the whole lot in one sitting! But at leasts you've helped me whizz through that little corner of it.

Thank you.

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Mentor ,
Nov 20, 2020

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I suggest you consider some keyword nesting. There is no unified (exclusive) logical structure which could fully categorise everything one may want to say about a photo, since many of these keywords are serving quite different purposes.

 

But as a first run, maybe take these fairly accidental keywords such as "24 Hours" or "55 ft" and group them inside a parent keyword "Signs". It is not necessary to assign the keyword "Signs" to these photos; they automatically inherit that now, so far as showing up when you search for "Signs" hereafter. This approach is very productive with geographical keywords, people keywords, and so on. Maybe you logically group "Signs" along with other similar keywords, under a parent keyword "Subjectmatter". the idea being, to keep that KIND of keywording separate in the list, from other keywords that express Place / Person / technical aspects, source or usage or workflow aspects. The moment you start to do any of this (no matter in what order) your list starts to become more manageable. Also the "intelligence" or "intent" sitting behind all your present keywording, improves. 

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Nov 20, 2020

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"I can't see a way to sort it by number of entries"

 

The Data Explorer plugin can give you a list of keywords sorted by their photo counts.

 

[Use the blue reply button under the first post to ensure replies sort properly.]

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