Organize your Collections in Lightroom 2 Beta

I'm a big fan of collections in Lightroom, because they help me keep track of the various edits I make on shoots. From a wedding, for example, I will have a first edit of everything that I kinda like, then an edit for a web presentation, then the final proof edit, then an edit for a DVD, then an album edit, and maybe one or two more after that.

Granted, I could keep all that stuff labeled with keywords and never make a collection, but I gotta admit I just don't like using keywords to filter my photos. To me, it's cumbersome. So I make collections. Quick, easy. Jump right to them. But, as you can see from this tiny slice of my Lightroom 1.4 library, I have a LOT of them.

Now, in Lightroom 2 Beta, there is a great way to keep these manageable. It's called Collection Sets, and it lets you group several collections under one heading.

At the top of the Collections column, click on the "plus" sign and you'll be presented with the menu shown here. You can create just a new Collection, or a new Smart Collection (which I may talk about at some future date) or a new Collection Set.

Basically, this creates the equivalent of a new folder in your collections column, and you can then drag whatever collections you want included into that folder.

Now, for every shoot, instead of having four or five different collections floating around loose under several different names, I can keep them organized under one name and know right where to find them next time.

Click on the little triangle and it collapses the folder view to just the main set title, saving valuable left-panel real estate. Sweet.

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