Organizing images in Adobe Photoshop Elements 6.0

This tutorial will show you how to use the Photoshop Elements 6.0 Organizer to sort, tag, rate and find your images.


For this tutorial, you need the following software:

Prerequisite knowledge:

The timeline in Photoshop Elements

Photoshop Elements Organizer automatically organizes your photos in the Photo Browser Timeline before you tag them. The Timeline organizes your photos according to when you took them. You can easily choose any month or year displayed and view all your photos from that time period.

  1. Choose Window > Timeline to display the Timeline (see figure 1).
  2. Image 1

    Figure 1: The Timeline in Photoshop Elements.

  3. Click on a specific month in the Timeline to view the photos taken in this month.
  4. The Timeline bars represent the images taken in that month. The height of the bars represents the number of images in that specific month.

  5. Deactivate the Timeline by choosing Window > Timeline again.

Rating images in Photoshop Elements

One way to organize a large catalog of photos is to create a rating system. In Photoshop Elements you can do this by star rating them with zero to 5 stars.

  1. Move your cursor over one of the images in the Organizer Photo Browser and you will see 5 unhighlighted stars below each photo. When you choose the number of stars you like, they will appear yellow (see figure 2).
  2. You can rate your images at any time; however, it's recommended you rate your images as soon as you import them to Photoshop Elements.

    Image 2

    Figure 2: Rate images with up to 5 stars.

    You can organize your images by their rating.

  3. In the Photo Browser select one of the stars in the star ratings filter. Select two stars to display images with two or more star rating. All other images will be hidden. (see figure 3)
  4. To view all your images again, simply click on the star again. All stars in the ratings filter will turn gray and all images are visible again.
  5. Image 3

    Figure 3: Only images with at least a 2 star rating are displayed.

Applying tags in Photoshop Elements

Another way to organize your catalog is to create keyword tags.

  1. Click the New button, represented by a green cross, in the Keyword Tags palette of the Task pane and choose New Keyword Tag. (see figure 4).
  2. Image 4

    Figure 4: Create a new keyword tag.

  3. In the Name box, type a name for the keyword tag. Click on OK.
  4. Your new Keyword Tag is displayed in the Keyword Tags pallette. You can apply it to images in your Photo Browser by dragging and dropping.

  5. If you want to create a new Keyword tag, in the Create Keyword Tag dialog box, use the Category menu to choose a category or subcategory in which to place the tag. Choose New Category.
  6. To search for a tagged image, click the checkbox with the spyglass icon, next to the Keyword tag. Images with the selected keyword are displayed in the Photo Browser.
  7. You also have the option of selecting multiple tags as display criteria. To view all images again simply click on the Show all button in the Photo Browser Menu.

Albums in Photoshop Elements

With albums in Photoshop Elements you can create personal collections of your images. For example, you might want to create an album of your 10 favorite pictures or of all your photos from your last vacation.

  1. Click the Create New Album Or Album Group button (represented by a green cross) in the Albums palette of the Task pane and choose New Album.
  2. In the Name box, type a name for the album.
  3. You have created a new album and can start adding images to it. Remember, until you add photos to the album, it uses a question mark icon. When you add a photo to an album, that photo will be used as the icon.

  4. Drag the album icon onto the images you wish to add to it.
  5. If you have multiple images selected in the Photo Browser, you can simply drag the album icon onto one of the selected images and all the images will be added to the album. That's a very quick way to assign multiple images with a Tag or an Album.

  6. Click on the album icon itself to display the images that are assigned with this album.
  7. Every image in your album has a number assigned to it. This means that all images in an album have a numbered position and are not sorted automatically. To rearrange individual images in an album simply drag and drop them to the desired spot.

  8. To remove an image from the album, right click on it and choose Remove from album > Album name.

Smart Albums in Photoshop Elements

The Smart Albums feature allows you to include photos of your choosing. With Smart Albums, you set the criteria for inclusion. After you set the criteria, any photo in a catalog that matches the criteria of a smart album will appear automatically in that Smart Album.

  1. In the Albums palette, click the Create A New Album Or Album Group button. Then, select New Smart Album. The New Smart Album dialog box opens.
  2. Let's create an album with all the images that have been made with a Nikon camera and that have at least a three-star rating.

  3. Enter "Nikon Top Images" as a name for the new Smart Album (see figure 5).
  4. Image 5

    Figure 5: In this dialog box you can specify the criteria for the Smart Album.

  5. Choose the Camera Model from the drop down menu and type "nikon".
  6. Add another criteria with the Plus button to the right.
  7. Choose Rating from the drop down menu, and then is higher than and 3.
  8. Click on the All of the following search criteria [AND] radiobutton.
  9. Click onOK.
  10. Your new album contains all the images matching your specific criteria.

  11. Click on Show All to display all images again.
  12. Rate some of your unrated images with three or more stars.
  13. If you click on your Smart Album again, the newly rated images have been added automatically only if they were shot with a Nikon camera.

Sharing images with Photoshop Elements

  1. Click Share in the Task pane.
  2. Here you can choose between multiple output formats.

  3. Click on More Options and choose PDF Slide Show..
  4. Drag the images you want to include in your PDF Slide Show to the designated Items area to the right and enter the name in the Filename for PDF Attachments textfield.
  5. Click Next.
  6. Now you can choose the recipients for your email and type a personalized message to them.

  7. Click Next. A dialog box shows you the filesize of your message. Click OK to confirm it.
  8. Your default email application launches with a new email that has your PDF-slideshow attached. The message is ready to be sent.

Where to go from here

For more information and additional tutorials, visit the Adobe Design Center.