Take Another Look at Collections

Collections were a great idea in version 1 of Lightroom. It was so good, in fact, that Adobe decided to expand collections in Lightroom 2. Now you can access your collections in other modules via the Collections panel that appears in the left panel set in every module. But did you know that collections come in different flavors? We're all familiar now with collections, collection sets, and smart collections. But you can also create slideshow collections, print collections, and web gallery collections. They even have their own distinct icons so you can tell them apart!

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So wherever you are in Lightroom you can see the difference between the collections. So what does this get you? Well by creating these specific collection type you only have to double-click on the collection and you will be taken to the appropriate module with that collection selected. Then you can continue your work from where you left off! That can add a little bit more efficiency to your workflow.

Creating these collections is easy. Let's look at creating a slideshow collection as an example. The same steps apply for each of the other types.

First you need to be in the module for the collection type you want to create. So, in this example, we switch to the Slideshow module. Make sure that the images you want to include show in the filmstrip. Which images will be in the collection is up to you. Use the selection drop down in the toolbar.

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Now, click on the + in the Collections panel and choose Create Slideshow... ( or Create Print... in the Print module, Create Web Gallery... in the Web module).

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That will bring you to this dialog:

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Give your slideshow a name. Decide if you want to put it in a collection set. Then press the Create button. That's it! Now you have a slideshow collection. if you are in another module just double-click on the collection and you'll be right back in the Slideshow module with those images. Keep in mind that these "specialized" collections continue to act like a regular collection throughout Lightroom. So if you are in the Web module and want to use the images from a slideshow collection just choose it from the Collections panel and work on your web gallery from there!

NOW FOR A WORD OF CAUTION! Adobe is currently working on a fix for a bug that seems to plague some users but not all. If you follow these directions and get the following error you are one of these unlucky users.

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Don't despair! Here is a quick workaround. When you create these collections check the Make new virtual copies option in the creation dialog. This seems to bypass the error. The downside is that you will have additional virtual copies in the catalog. An additional workaround is to put your collection into a collection set, choose the collection set in the module and create your specialized collection from there. This prevents the virtual copy buildup but forces you to create unnecessary collection sets to avoid the error.

Still, the feature is quite useful and has promise as the kinks are worked out.