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Organizing Catalog Items in Adobe Photoshop Elements 4 and Premiere Elements 2

After importing images into a catalog, you can begin to work with them in the Organizer. In this chapter, you’ll learn how to review images one at a time in an automated slide show, group different versions of the same image, and categorize images.
This chapter is from the book Chapter 3: Organizing Items in the Catalog

In This Chapter:

  • Review Images
  • Create a Tag
  • Create a Collection
  • Attach a Marker to an Item
  • Add a Text Caption or Note
  • Make a Creation
  • About Trading Items in the Catalog

After importing images into a catalog, you can begin to work with them in the Organizer. In this chapter, you’ll learn how to review images one at a time in an automated slide show, group different versions of the same image, and categorize images. You group similar media files together by adding the same tag or collection marker. For example, you might add a John tag to several audio files, movie files, and images that feature your son, John. Similarly, you might add a Calendar collection marker to the images you’re gathering for a calendar you want to make. Finally, you’ll learn how to annotate your images with a written caption or note.

Review Images

Before You Begin

Add a Text Caption or Note

→ See Also

Print Images Using an Online Service

Create a Slide Show in Photoshop Elements

You can automatically review each image in a group with a full-screen photo review. The ideal time to perform a photo review is just after importing a set of images into the catalog because you can stop the review when needed to edit, rotate, or delete an image; mark an image for printing; or add a tag or collection marker. You can also skip to a particular image when desired. In addition, you can split the screen and compare two images when needed. In this task, you’ll learn the ins and outs of conducting your own private photo review.

Select Photos to Review

Photo review includes in its review only the images currently being displayed in the Organizer. So, if you’ve just imported some images you want to review, you can skip this step, because the newly imported images are the only ones currently showing. Otherwise, to limit the display, you can use the Find bar to show just the photos to review. You can also select the images to review by pressing Ctrl as you click each one, or by pressing Shift as you click the first and last photo in a group.

Click Full Screen View

Click on the Options bar at the bottom of the photo well. The Full Screen View Options dialog box appears.

Set Options

To play music while you’re reviewing your photos, select a music file from the Background Music list or click Browse to locate the file. Select the number of seconds you want each image to appear onscreen from the Page Duration list. To fade in and out between images, select Fade Between Photos.

To display text captions you’ve added to images, enable the Include Captions option. To play audio captions you attached to any of these images, select Play Audio Captions. To allow photos to resize to fill the window, enable the Allow Photos to Resize option. To allow video files to resize to fill the window, enable the Allow Videos to Resize option. This option, however, can make low-resolution videos very grainy and hard to see.

To start the slide show automatically, select Start Playing Automatically. If you want the slide show to automatically repeat itself over and over until you stop it manually, enable the Repeat Slide Show option. To show the filmstrip (so you can view images in any order by selecting the one to view) select Show Filmstrip. Click OK.

Select Viewing Mode

If the slide show has started, you won’t be able to set any options until you click Stop. Normally, each image is displayed one at a time during the show, but to display images side by side, click the Photo Compare button on the Photo Review toolbar (which you can display by moving the mouse at any time) and select either Side by Side or Above and Below.

Adjust Zoom

Adjust the zoom as desired: click the Actual Pixels button to display the photo in its original size (for a high-resolution photo, you’ll have to scroll to see it all); click Fit in Window to shrink the photo so that all of it is displayed. You can also drag the Zoom slider to the left or right to adjust the zoom level. Click the Sync Pan and Zoom button to synchronize scrolling and zooming when displaying two images at a time.

Review Photos

Click Play to begin the slide show. Click Stop to pause the slide show temporarily to perform some action such as tagging an image, and then click Play to resume. If you do nothing but watch, each image is displayed and then you’re returned to the photo well (unless you selected the Repeat Slide Show option in step 3, in which case the slide show will continue to repeat until you exit the photo review or stop it by clicking Stop on the review toolbar). If the filmstrip is displayed on the right, you can skip to an image at any time by clicking its thumbnail. You can also use the Next Photo and Previous Photo buttons to skip photos. The slide show will simply resume from that point.

If you’re displaying two images at a time, you must switch from image to image manually. Click a pane to make that pane active (the active pane appears with a blue border), and then press ← or → on your keyboard, click Next Photo or Previous Photo, or click a thumbnail on the filmstrip to display that image in the active pane.

Edit Photo as Desired

If you’re using Photo Review mode, click Stop to pause the slide show so that you can edit the displayed image. If you’re using Photo Compare mode, click the pane that contains the image you want to edit.

Click the Rotate Left or Rotate Right button in the Photo Review toolbar to rotate the image sideways. Click Delete to remove the image from the catalog (and from the hard disk, if you want). Click the arrow on the Action Menu button to display a list of actions you can take, such as adding a tag or collection marker to the current image, or marking an image for printing later on. Click the Create Slide Show button on the right side of the toolbar to create a slide show using these images.

When you’re through, click the Exit button to stop the review and return to the main Organizer window. If you used the Action Menu to mark photos for printing, a dialog box appears. Click Print to print those photos locally; click Order Prints to send the images to an online service for printing.

Create a Tag

→ See Also

Create a Collection

To identify the content of images so that you can locate them when needed, you assign tags to those images. To make your various tags markers easier to use, you’ll want to keep them organized by category. The Tags tab of the Organize Bin has several pre-existing tag categories for you to use: Favorites, Hidden, People, Events, Other, and Places. There are some subcategories in the People category as well: Family and Friends. To this list you can add as many categories and subcategories as you want. Although you can use the category and subcategory tags the Organizer provides to mark your images, you’ll probably want to create at least a few tags that are more specific than just Family or Events.

When you create a new tag for your images, you assign it a unique name, add a descriptive note if desired, and select the category in which you want the tag to appear. New tags appear in the Organize Bin under the category you choose, at first with a generic icon that has no picture. The first time you assign the new icon to a photo, that photo is automatically applied as the icon for that tag. When you assign a group of photos to a new tag collectively, its icon is borrowed from the newest photo in that group. This task shows you how to create new tag categories and tag markers.

Click Tags Tab

To create a new tag category or subcategory, in the Organizer, click the Tags tab on the Organize Bin.

Click New Button

To create a new category or subcategory for tags, click the New button at the top of the Organize Bin and then select New Category or New Sub-Category. The Create Category or Create Sub-Category dialog box appears.

Enter Name

Type a name for the new tag category or subcategory in the text box provided.

Set Options and Click OK

When creating a tag category, select the icon you want to represent the category from those shown in the Category Icon list. You can also change the color that appears at the top of the tags in this category by clicking the Choose Color button, selecting a color from the Color Picker that opens, and clicking OK to return to the Create Category dialog box.

If you’re creating a tag subcategory, select the category to which you want to assign it from the Parent Category or Sub-Category list.

Click OK. The new category/subcategory marker appears on the Organize Bin.

Click New Button

After creating any needed tag categories or subcategories, you can add new tags to the Organize Bin. Click the New button at the top of the Organize Bin and choose New Tag. The Create Tag dialog box appears.

Select Category

Open the Category drop-down list and select the tag category or sub- category to which you want to assign this new marker.

Enter Tag Name

Type a name for the new tag marker in the Name text box. The name can include spaces if you like, but you are limited to 63 characters.

Type Description and Click OK

Click in the Note box and type a description of the tag if desired. This note appears only when you select a tag and click the Edit button (the pencil icon) at the top of the Organize Bin, so it’s of limited use. Click OK to create the new tag marker. The marker appears on the Organize Bin underneath the category or group you selected in step 6. The marker is now ready to be assigned to any item you want—although you’ve probably noticed that its icon is blank at the moment. When you assign a new marker to a photo for the first time, the marker will grab that photo for its icon. See Attach a Marker to an Item.

To remove a marker you no longer want, select it and click the Delete button (the trash icon) on the Organize Bin. The marker is automatically removed from any items to which it may have been assigned. To replace one marker with another, select both in the Organize Bin, right-click, and choose Merge Tags. Select the marker to keep and click OK. Items with the other marker are automatically tagged with the marker you kept, and the other marker is removed from the Organize Bin.

You can enlarge the size of the icon that appears next to a tag by choosing Edit, Preferences, Tags and Collections, and choosing the last option from the Tag Display frame. Notice that you can also forgo the photo icon altogether and display a small folder icon instead.

Create a Collection

Before You Begin

Create a Tag

→ See Also

Attach a Marker to an Item

Collection markers appear on the Organize Bin. You can organize collection markers into groups if you like, but by their very nature (gathering together a special group of images for a specific purpose such as an upcoming family reunion), collections are unique and you’ll probably find that you don’t need to group them much, although you’ll learn how to do so in this task.

Creating a collection marker is similar to creating a tag (see Create a Tag). It’s after you create a collection marker and apply it that you’ll discover the key differences between the two: Photos in a collection are organized in sequence, by number, unlike a set of photos that share the same tag (which are shown in the catalog using the chosen sort order). The sequence is important when you want to organize a group of photos, perhaps for a slideshow or other creation where sequence is critical. The Organizer provides no collection groups initially, although you can easily create the ones you need, and place into them any existing collections group.

Click Collections Tab

To create a new collection group (or subgroup, which is even more rare), click the Collections tab.

Click New Button

To create a collection group or subgroup, click the New button on the Organize Bin and select New Collection Group. The Create Collection Group dialog box appears.

Enter Name

Type a name for the new collection group in the text box provided.

Select Parent Group and Click OK

To create a collection subgroup, select an existing group from the Parent Collection Group list. To create a collection group, leave this option set to None. Click OK. The new collection group/subgroup appears on the Organize Bin.

Click New Button

After creating any needed collection groups or subgroups, you can add new collection markers to the Organize Bin. Click the New button at the top of the Organize Bin and choose New Collection. The Create Collection dialog box appears.

Select Group

Open the Group drop-down list and select the collection group or subgroup to which you want to assign this new collection marker. If you don’t want to group the new collection with other collections, choose None (Top Level) from this list.

Enter Collection Name

Type a name for the new collection marker in the Name text box. The name can include spaces if you like, but you are limited to 63 characters.

Type Description and Click OK

Click in the Note box and type a description of the collection if desired. This note appears only when you select a collection marker and click the Edit button (the pencil icon) at the top of the Organize Bin, so it’s of limited use. Click OK to create the new collection marker. The marker appears on the Organize Bin underneath the group you selected in step 6 (if any). The marker is now ready to be assigned to any item you want—although you’ve probably noticed that its icon is blank at the moment. When you assign a new marker to a photo for the first time, the marker will grab that photo for its icon. See Attach a Marker to an Item.

Attach a Marker to an Item

Before You Begin

Create a Collection

To organize your media files into logical groups such as vacation photos, photos of the family dog, audio files of your daughter, movies of friends, and so on, assign tag and collection markers to them. After a marker has been associated with your media files, you can search for items with a particular marker and display just those files onscreen. For example, if you have a tag called Hattie, you could use it to instantly display photos of your pet Scottie dog.

Select Items

In the Organizer, select the item(s) you want to mark. To select multiple items, press Shift and click the first and last item in a contiguous group, or press Ctrl and click each item you want. If items are sorted by folder or import batch, you can click the gray bar above a group to select all items in that group.

Click Tags or Collections Tab

To assign a tag, click the Tags tab on the Organize Bin. To assign a collection marker, click the Collections tab instead.

Select Markers

In the Organize Bin, press Ctrl and click each marker you want to assign to the selected items. (You can assign multiple tags or multiple collection markers in one step, but not both.)

Assign the Marker(s)

Drag the selected marker(s) onto any one of the selected items and drop the markers on the item. If you’re assigning a new marker to an image for the first time, that image is used as the marker’s photo icon. If you selected multiple images, the first image in the group is the one used. The markers you assigned appear as icons underneath the selected items.

Or Click Find Faces for Tagging

To use the faces in the selected photos you selected to help you assign tags (not collection markers), skip steps 2–4 and instead, after selecting images, click the Find Faces for Tagging button at the top of the Organize Bin.

Assign Tag(s)

Organizer searches the selected image(s) for faces and displays them in small thumbnails in the Face Tagging dialog box (if a face is turned partially away from the camera, it might not be picked up). Drag a tag from the list on the right and drop it on a thumbnail to assign the tag to that image. To view the image from which a face thumbnail was pulled, click the thumbnail. The thumbnail is removed from the Face Tagging dialog box, unless you’ve selected the Show Already Tagged Faces option. Continue until you’ve tagged all your images, then click Done.

Arrange Items in a Collection

After assigning a collection marker to a group of items (images, sound files, and/or video files), you can display that group in Collections Order view by clicking the box in front of the collection name on the Organize Bin.

Rearrange the items in a collection in any order you want by simply dragging them in the photo well. As you rearrange the items, the number assigned to each item (which appears in the upper-left corner of the item and denotes its position within the collection) changes.

Add a Text Caption or Note

With a text caption, you can provide a title for your "works of art" (your photographs). An image’s caption appears in the photo well when you display the image using Single Photo view, and below each image in a photo review (see Review Images). In addition, captions can be printed on a contact sheet and made to appear in various creations, such as a slide show, photo book, video CD, calendar, or HTML Photo Gallery. For longer descriptions or stories about an image, you can enter a note. Notes do not appear in the photo well, but only within the Properties pane.

Select Image(s)

In the Organizer, click the image to which you want to add a caption. If you want to add the same caption to multiple images, select them now.

Click Show or Hide Properties Button

If it’s not already displayed, click the Show or Hide Properties button on the Options bar to display the Properties pane. You can also choose Window, Properties from the menu.

Type Caption and/or Note

If you selected one image, click the General button at the top of the Properties pane. Then type your Caption, such as Alyce on Big Bear Mountain, July 2005 or We watched the rain under the protection of a large maple tree. Your caption can include up to 2000 characters, including spaces, but you’ll want to keep it short so it displays fully onscreen and in creations. Longer descriptions can be typed in the Notes section if you like.

If you selected multiple images, click the Change Caption button. Type your Caption, select Replace Existing Captions (otherwise, if an image already has a caption, it won’t be replaced), then click OK.

Close the Properties pane by clicking its X button or by clicking the Show or Hide Properties button on the Options bar.

View the Result

Notes can only be seen in the Properties pane, and they are not used in creations. To view an image’s caption, change to Single Photo view by double-clicking the image in the photo well or by clicking the Single Photo View button on the Options bar.

Make a Creation

→ See Also

Attach a Marker to an Item

Organizing images is just one of the things Organizer helps you excel at; another is being creative. Using the images in the catalog, you can make a variety of creations, including slide shows, VCD (a collection of slide shows playable on your TV), calendars, photo books, greeting cards, and an HTML photo gallery (a browsable gallery of images). You can share creations you make in a variety of ways, such as emailing them to friends, burning slide shows or VCDs onto a CD, printing album pages, calendars, and cards at home, or uploading calendars and photo books to Adobe Printing Services for professional services.

You make creations using the Creations Wizard; the wizard steps you through the process of arranging your photos, selecting a template, choosing options, and saving, emailing, printing, or uploading the result. In this task, you’ll learn the basic steps in making a calendar. Although each creation type has its own set of options, the process is similar for each type.

Select Image(s)

In the Organizer, select the image(s) you want to use in the creation.

Click the Create Button

Click the Create button on the Shortcuts bar.

Select Creation Type

On the first page of the Creations Wizard, select the type of creation you want to make from those listed on the left. As you make a selection, a description of that choice appears on the right. Small icons appear above this description, indicating your choices (such as printing, burning to CD, ordering online, and so on) for this particular creation. Hover the mouse over an icon to see the choice it represents. Click OK.

Set Options

In Step 1 of the Creations Wizard, select a template from the list on the right. Set other options as desired. For example, in the calendar shown here, you can add a title page (you’ll need an extra photo), image captions, and adjust the length of the calendar. Click Next Step.

Arrange Images

In Step 2 of the Creations Wizard, images appear in the order in which they were selected. Drag and drop images to rearrange them as desired. Click Next Step.

Add Text

In Step 3 of the Creations Wizard, you add text to the creation. Just double-click where indicated and type your text, set formatting by choosing the font, style, and size of the text, and click Done. Some creations have multiple pages; click the ã to flip through pages and add text as needed. You can also resize and move images on each page if you like. Click Next Step.

Save Creation

In Step 4 of the Creations Wizard, type a name for the creation in the box provided or select Use Title for Name to use the name from the Title Page as the creation’s name. To display all the images you used in the creation in the photo well after the creation is saved, select Show these photos in my Photo Browser when finished. Click Next Step.

Share Creation

In Step 5 of the Creations Wizard, select how you want to share the creation. For example, to resave the creation in PDF format and attach it to an email message, click Email. Some creations are designed specifically to be printed professionally, although you can still print them at home if you want. To order a professionally printed copy of such a creation, click Order Online. (See Print Images Using an Online Service for more information on using an online service.) Options that are not applicable for this creation are grayed out. If you don’t want to share the creation, click Done.

The creation appears with a special icon in its upper-right corner to help identify it as a creation. To redisplay all your creations, search by media type. See About Finding Items in the Catalog. You can also mark creations with tag or collection markers to help you locate them again. To edit a creation, double-click its thumbnail in the photo well. To display the items used in a collection in the photo well, right-click its thumbnail and choose Show Creation Items in Photo Browser.

About Finding Items in the Catalog

Just because your catalog may have countless rows of thumbnails does not mean that it is less manageable, or that your media files are more difficult to find than when you had only a few dozen thumbnails to contend with. After each image file has been imported, the catalog automatically begins tracking that the item’s filename, location, file date, and file type, and (in the case of images) the Exchangeable Image File (EXIF) data (also called metadata) that your camera/scanner stored in the file when the image was shot or scanned. This data typically includes the resolution, color gamut (color range), image size, compression, shutter speed, and f-stop of the image. An EXIF-aware application such as Photoshop Elements can use this data to adjust the image so that it appears, when displayed or printed, as closely to the way the image looked when shot as possible. In addition, through the File Info dialog box in the Editor, and the Properties pane in the Organizer, Photoshop Elements can amend the EXIF metadata to include tags, collection markers, title, description, and copyright information. Also, as you edit an image, its edit history is stored in the image’s metadata. So, without doing any work other than importing a media file, you can locate an item immediately if you know any of its file data.

The true organizational magic begins, however, when you associate any number of markers to the items in the catalog. The markers enable you to keep track of what’s important about a particular item—for instance, whether it’s a holiday, party, or other special event, or whether the shot was taken indoors or outdoors. You can add notes and captions to your catalog items, making it even easier to locate a particular media file when needed. In upcoming tasks, you’ll learn how to search for items in the catalog using the tags and collection markers you’ve assigned. You’ll also learn how to search for items based on their file date, filename, caption, note, media type (such as creation, movie, audio file, and so on), and history (not just when an item was imported or edited, but also when it was sent via email, shared online, or printed).

When you perform a search of the catalog, the search criteria are displayed on the Find bar. For example, if you’re searching for items with certain collection or tag markers, those markers appear in the Find bar. If you’re looking for the photos you used in a particular slideshow, the Find bar reads Used in along with the name of that slideshow. If you’re looking for only those items to which you’ve attached audio captions, the Find bar reads Items with Audio Captions. Underneath the Find bar, in the photo well, are the items that match your search. This means that, when you see something in the Find bar, all items in the catalog are not currently being shown; to display all items, click the Back to All Photos button on the Find bar. There is one exception here you should note: If you use the Timeline to limit the items displayed in the photo well, nothing appears on the Find bar to notify you that all items are not currently being shown. To clear the Timeline limitations and redisplay all items, choose Find, Clear Date Range.

When there’s an active search in progress, the Find bar displays the number of matches and non-matches. After you perform a search, the matching items are displayed in the photo well and a check mark appears next to the XX Best box on the Find bar (where XX represents the number of exact matches to all your criteria). To display exact matches and items that match at least one of the criteria, enable both the XX Best and XX Close boxes. To show only those items that do not match any of the criteria, disable the XX Best and XX Close boxes, and enable the XX Not box instead. If you enable the XX Not box and the XX Best box, all the items in the catalog will appear, but the non-matches will show a red Not icon (a circle with a slash) similar to the one on the Find bar. Matches won’t have this icon.

Normally, you cannot mix and match different types of search criteria. For example, if you’re searching for items that contain one or more tags, and you begin a search for items you emailed to someone, the Organizer clears the current search by tags and processes your search by email as a new search. However, using an item’s metadata (its file date, shutter speed, aperture, tags, collection markers, edit history, and so on), you can create a unique search that combines the elements of these other, separate searches. For example, you can look for an item created on July 12th, marked with a Party tag, and shot with a large f-stop of F4 or lower (which may indicate minimal available light, such as an indoor shot).

There are so many ways to search for items in the catalog that we could not cover them all in the upcoming tasks. Because these search methods are really simple, I’ll cover them briefly here. To locate items of a similar type (all creations or all videos), choose Find, By Media Type, then choose the type from the list that appears. For example, choose Find, By Media Type, Videos. To find images with similar content, select some sample images that show the content you want to find, and then choose Find, Items by Visual Similarity with Selected Photo(s). Or just drag the similar images to the Find bar and drop them to create a search. With this type of search, it’s best to select several items with similar content, because that makes it easier for Organizer to find more of the same. To find items with a date or time set to Unknown, select Find, Items with Unknown Date or Time. You might do this to locate and change items with unknown dates/times to something more specific.

To display images that have been edited and saved together with their originals in a version set, choose Find, All Version Sets. This command, however, does not display items you’ve grouped together manually in stacks. To display items that have not yet been tagged so that you can mark them, choose Find, Untagged Items. Items with collection markers and no tags will appear, along with items that have no markers at all. To find items that do not have a collection marker (but may or may not have a tag), choose Find, Items Not in any Collection instead.

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  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020