flag, rating and color label

aster

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LR2.
I'm still learning how to handle my 3'k photo collection with LR :)
What is the difference between flag, rating and color label? What limitations each have?
Can these all be used as search criteria? as filter criteria? Can these be assigned using easy kb shortcut, (like rating, using numbers from kb - which therefore tends to be my favorite for marking photos)
Thanks!
 

b_gossweiler

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Aster,

There are some major differences between Flags and Color Labels/Ratings:

  • [li]Flags don't get written into files when you do a "Save Metadata to Files", Color Labels and Ratings do.[/li]
    [li]There is no EXIF tag for flags. So if you export, Color Labels and Ratings will go with the photo if not surpressed, Flags won't
    [/li]
    [li]Flags are local to a Collection/Folder, meaning that if you flag a photo from within a collection, the flag is not visible from the folder view of the same photo and vice versa
    [/li]
The differences between Color Labels and Ratings I can think of are:

  • [li]You can assign all Ratings (1-5) by keyboard shortcuts, while for Color Labels only 6-9 is available, leaving the last Color Label without a keyboard shortcut[/li]
    [li]Ratings are hierarchical, meaning you can filter on anything having 3 or more stars, while Color Labels are discrete attributes.
    [/li]
    [li]Color Labels are Label-Set and language-dependant. That means that somebody reading a catalog with an LR system setup in a different language than yours will not see the Color Labels correctly, until a label set is established with the same text terms are your active label set has (see Metadata/Color Label Set menu in Library Module)[/li]
All three can be used as filter and smart collection criteria. You also might want to think about other metadata to organize your photos, like Keywords, Caption, Title and IPTC fields.

Beat
 

Brad Snyder

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Excellent summary Beat, I'll add one further Collection complication; Flags applied while viewing a Smart Collection reflect back to the photos in the original folder.
 
D

deedee

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I wonder how you guys handle the initial selection. Let's say you are to import 3'' pics. from the card; do you select which ones to import or do you import the whole 9 yards and then select? Do you usualy start with flags, labels or ratings?
I'd appreciate your guidance,
David
 

b_gossweiler

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David,

I'll import everything and start my selection then. I use ratings and not flags for selection, but that's a personal preference. I use color labels for development stages or needs.

Beat
 

sizzlingbadger

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The new LR3 import interface allows you to see large versions of the images and provides keyboard shortcuts to de-select unwanted images. This can speed up your workflow quite considerably as you don't have to import stuff you don't want. You can do your rough-cut selection before you import which is very useful.
 

Brad Snyder

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David, there you have it, the authoritative answer, "Yes, or maybe No". :)

I import them all. My little bit of pro work is as an event shooter, and therefore I try to save all technically viable shots. There's just no telling what will catch the client's eye. Perhaps it would be different if I were shooting for 'the perfect shot'. As Nik says, you could save a lot of data transfer time if you could weed out the trash early in the process. (But I'd still probably import them all, I'm just used to working that way.)

BTW, welcome to the forums.
 
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I once saw an example of a Lightroom Pro (don't remember who, though) who had made a custom Panel End Mark (the little Yin / Yang sign at the bottom of the left and right panels indicating you've reached the end of t he panel) that summarised what his star ratings and color labels meant for him.
I thought that was a good idea, especially when you're starting out with the labeling thing. It assures that you stay consistent at it and it beats sticking a post-it to your screen :)
 
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LOL, that's it. You're the mysterious Lightroom Pro, John. You see, I did mean to give you the credit you deserved! ;)
 

liquidmonkey

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i usually import everything, flag the junk and permanently delete it (shift, alt, ctrl, delete)
then i go through the photos again, doing some touch ups if needed and remove more unwanted
one more time to set up some stars and add captions
and then another time to assign a color (green) which are the ones i'll use in a slideshow or on FB

i like to look at the photos a few times as each time i see something different or new details emerge etc but its all personal preference really and i'm by no means a pro. 14'' pics from my latest trip biking around iceland for four weeks took me 2 weeks to sort out...
 
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[quote author=MoreThanWords link=topic=1'512.msg72233#msg72233 date=128194'525]
LOL, that's it. You're the mysterious Lightroom Pro, John. You see, I did mean to give you the credit you deserved! ;)
[/quote]
Funnily enough, John Birch also forgot where he'd seen the idea.

John
 
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[quote author=johnbeardy link=topic=1'512.msg72238#msg72238 date=1281944618]
Funnily enough, John Birch also forgot where he'd seen the idea.

John
[/quote]

I hope you're not starting to see a conspiracy here :)
 

rjalex

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Along the more important facts our almighty senior members :p have already explained I'd like to share my simple understanding of the arcane matter.

Flags : the X flag (Reject) is your friend in weeding out quickly the duds. After you flag the pics you want to destroy with an X, the Ctrl-Backspace key will give you the option of deleting them forever. I find this a lot better than deleting them outright since it gives you the option of changing advice at a later time (U key).

The 1 to 5 rating are ORDERED meaning you can apply the "less" and "more" criteria while selecting

The colours IMHO are an half baked feature. They are labels to which you are free to give any meaning you want. What I personally find a shame is that you cannot give more than ONE single colour to a given photo. So qualitatively they are like a text label with the added benefit of a quick way to assign them (6 to 9) and a quick way to filter them by clicking the corresponding colour.

HTH
Bob
 

Jddolbee

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I find the color ratings very useful when coupled with the filters. I usually shoot and import around a hundred pictures from an event. First I make a quick pass and reject (X flag) the bad ones and delete them. Then I set the ratings for all remaining at Green and set the filter to show only Green. Then I start the development process. If when processed, the image is one to keep, I mark it Blue, if not then I mark it Yellow. In either case, the image then drops from the filtered group.

When I've completed editing all the Greens, the film strip is empty. I then filter on Yellow and review those one more time; if I missed something that was good, I finish editing it and mark it Blue. When completed, I delete all remaining Yellows. What is left of my package is now marked Blue, which I filter on and then review and choose any for printing or export. Those I mark Purple. Again, a quick change of the filter to Purple and I have my finals selected for printing.

I find this process to be simple and straight forward for my workflow. For some reason, the color ratings make more sense to me than the star ratings.

jim
 
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