This past weekend I took the liberty of doing a little house cleaning. Unfortunately for my wife, it had nothing to do with my actual house and everything to do with my Lightroom collection. My house cleaning actually was a two-phase operation. The first phase was to eliminate the files that I really didn’t need but were occupying space on my hard drive in the form of image files and Lightroom database objects. Each of these items have been chewing up much needed drive space. I know that I could be more selective during the import process but I much prefer to import all of my images from my memory card and then sort them later, usually much later in my case.
The easiest way to get rid of unwanted images in Lightroom is to use the Rejected function. It’s pretty easy to sort through a lot of images by using a simple keyboard shortcut. You can choose to view your images using the Grid view (keyboard shortcut G) or full-sized using the Loupe view (keyboard shortcut E). In Grid view, just move the focus to the image you want to mark as rejected and then press the X key. It works the same in Loupe view as well. Just use the arrow left/right arrow keys to move from one image to the next, pressing X every time you come across an image that you don’t want to keep. You will know that you have selected the image as rejected because you will see a small black flag with an X in it in the corner of the image once you have returned to Grid View.
Once the images are selected, click on the small flag in the Filter section to display all of your rejected images. The Rejected flag is the one on the right.
When you click the flag, all of the rejected images will be displayed and you can now delete them en mass. Simply press CTRL +A (Windows) or CMD+A (Mac) to select all of your rejected images and then press the Delete key. This will bring up one more dialog box. You now have the option of removing the files from the Lightroom database and, in my case, removing them from my hard drive. Since this is my ultimate goal, I select the Delete from Disk option and that’s that.
Check back tomorrow for Part B of my Catalog Cleaning weekend when I cover those pesky images with the question marks.