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Library module Copying collections with stacks

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Rob M.

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I have a collection in Lr that I split into a number of smaller collections. When I selected subsets of the original collection and dragged them into the smaller collections, I ended up with a smaller total number of photos. As in the thread "Library module: Inconsistency in Collection count, feature or bug?", stacks caused the problem: Selecting a collapsed stack only copied the top photo in the stack, not the whole stack. Opening all the stacks got all the photos in all the stacks, but the smaller collections no longer had the stacks in them, because stacking is local to a collection. Stacks are not treated as an objects across the library.

Eventually, I found a workaround. It only works for the specific case of splitting a larger collection into smaller ones, not for merging or rearranging collections. (Perhaps there is some way using metadata to preserve stack info in more general cases.)

When you right-click a collection and select Duplicate Collection, the copy retains all stacking and open/closed state of the original collection. So you can proceed as follows. For each smaller collection you want to create:

1 Use Duplicate Collection to create a copy of the original
2 In the copy, select all the photos you don't want in the small collection
3 In the selection, right-click > Stacking > Unstack
4 Hit delete
5 Rename the small collection as desired

Since I only needed to split the original into five pieces, this process didn't take too much time.

R
 
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Thanks for sharing your solution Rob, and welcome to the forum!
 

PhilBurton

Lightroom enthusiast (but still learning)
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I have a collection in Lr that I split into a number of smaller collections. When I selected subsets of the original collection and dragged them into the smaller collections, I ended up with a smaller total number of photos. As in the thread "Library module: Inconsistency in Collection count, feature or bug?", stacks caused the problem: Selecting a collapsed stack only copied the top photo in the stack, not the whole stack. Opening all the stacks got all the photos in all the stacks, but the smaller collections no longer had the stacks in them, because stacking is local to a collection. Stacks are not treated as an objects across the library.

Eventually, I found a workaround. It only works for the specific case of splitting a larger collection into smaller ones, not for merging or rearranging collections. (Perhaps there is some way using metadata to preserve stack info in more general cases.)

When you right-click a collection and select Duplicate Collection, the copy retains all stacking and open/closed state of the original collection. So you can proceed as follows. For each smaller collection you want to create:

1 Use Duplicate Collection to create a copy of the original
2 In the copy, select all the photos you don't want in the small collection
3 In the selection, right-click > Stacking > Unstack
4 Hit delete
5 Rename the small collection as desired

Since I only needed to split the original into five pieces, this process didn't take too much time.

R
I guess a more basic question is why you needed to split your one catalog intgo multiple catalogs. There are several ways in Lightroom to organize the catalog into specific collections. For example, you can actually create "collections" or "smart collections." You can use keywords together with smart collections.

In many posts in this forum, people keep making the point that having multiple catalogs instigated of just one is not a best practice.

Phil Burton
 

Rob M.

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Joined
Jul 10, 2018
Messages
26
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Intermediate
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Hi, Phil --

I created my big collection when I started my first Lr project. It contained all the pix from four weeks of travel. After awhile, I realized that one, big collection was unwieldy -- I should have split the pix into smaller collections in the first place. By then, I had also created stacks in the big collection, and I didn't want to lose them. To split the big collection, I figured out the workaround that I described.

So, yes, it's better to group pix in to the collections you're going to use before you start working on them. After enough years with Lr, I imagine one gets better at anticipating the right organization at the start of each project. Better, but not perfect.

So it sure would be nice if Lr supported drag/drop for stacks, including open/closed state. Then, for example, I could painlessly merge two collections with stacks sometime in the future. Lr seems to handle most other aspects of stacks well.

Smart collections don't support custom ordering, no big surprise, given that Lr builds them dynamically. I'm organizing pix into slide shows, so I definitely want a custom ordering. To order a smart collection for a slide show would require sorting by some supported View > Sort... characteristic. The only possibility seems to be filename. So how to proceed? Rename the pix in sequential order, maybe, but that assumes the same order for all smart collections using the pix, and it creates unnecessary work vs. using a normal collection.

Thanks,

R
 
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