Skip to main content

Using Albums in Elements

Lesson 54 from: Learn How to Use Photoshop Elements

Khara Plicanic

Using Albums in Elements

Lesson 54 from: Learn How to Use Photoshop Elements

Khara Plicanic

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

54. Using Albums in Elements


Class Trailer

Class Introduction


Understand How Elements Works


Importing Images


Workspace Basics: Organizer


Workspace Basics: Editor


Tonal Adjustments in Quick Fix


Color Adjustments in Quick Fix


Apply Black & White Filters


Sharpen an Image


Fix Red Eye & Pet Eye


Straighten an Image in Quick Fix


Explanation of Photoshop Elements


Basic Cropping in Quick Fix


Guided Edit Overview


Guided Edit: Tilt Shift


Ways to Save Files


Layers & Simple Selections


Combine Images with Layers


How to Use Layer Styles


Make Selections with Layers


Make Selection with Lasso


Compositing with Multiple Images


Refine Edge Selection on Image


Use Refine Edge on Images


Create Gradient in Image


Gradient Map Differences


Options for Saving


Brushes Overview


Creatively Use Brushes


How to Change Brush Settings


Use Shape Tool with Brushes


Work with Multiple Shape Layers


Finish Image with Custom Shape Tool


How to Load Brushes into Elements


Add Layer Style to Image


Clip Image to Shape & Use as Template


Retouching Overview


How to Use Content-Aware Fill


How to Use Content-Aware Move Tool


Spot Healing Brush on Blemishes


Remove Frown Lines with Retouching


How to Remove Tattoos


Remove a Gap in Teeth


How to Whiten Teeth


Adjust Facial Features


Working with Type Overview


Match Type for Image


How to Manipulate Type Layers


Create Postcard with Type


Add Type on a Path


Organizing Images in Elements


Add Keywords to Images


Smart Tags Overview


Using Albums in Elements


Places Workspace Overview


Use Event Tags on Images


Timeline for Image Organization


Recommended Workflow


Lesson Info

Using Albums in Elements

Let's talk about albums and working with that. The albums are found over here in your workspace so if you don't see this panel down here at the bottom left of your workspace, you can hide or show this left panel, and this is where the albums are found. So we have two tabs over here. The folders tab is what I usually have up because it allows me to see and interact with my hard drive a little bit over here, but what we are gonna talk about quickly is the albums opportunity here. Now, albums, I think, are one of those things that at first blush you might think that you could use them one way, but they're actually maybe not usable the way you would think so my inclination with albums would be oh, I need to make an album for every different download that I do or every different collection of images and that's not the best way to use albums. Albums are best used when you use it for special projects. So like I wouldn't make an album and just be like, I'm gonna put all my cat pictures in the ...

album. That's what keywords are for, right? So if you've got pets and you want to create a keyword and tag every picture of your pet with the keyword, that's a perfect use of keywords. But I'm not gonna do an album for that. Things I would create an album for would be like, maybe I'm gonna make a slideshow for, I don't know, my parents' anniversary or something, or maybe I'm gonna give a presentation for something, and I wanna gather images I'm gonna use in my presentation. Something like that, or creating a blog post, something where it's sort of separate from any of the keyword tagging places and people organizational structure. So something just totally different like that. So let's go ahead and show you how that works. The process is really the same. Once you know how to create a keyword, you can create an album. It's really not that different, so I'm gonna click the little arrow here so you can see your albums. You do have the ability to put your albums in a category, so if you end up making a ton of albums, you can categorize them which just helps keep them orderly, but we'll just go ahead and say new album, and over here it's gonna ask me to type in a name. Let's say I'm gonna prepare a blog post about, I don't know, crochet or something and I just want to include a few images so we'll call this blog post and I'll click OK. So now we've got the album over here and whatever images I wanna include in this blog post I can just scroll through and find them. Now if I know that I really only want some of my crochet images to be included here, I can avoid having to scroll through my whole collection by just first doing a search for crochet. Then if I do that, it's a much easier way for me to find images that I might wanna put in a blog post about a certain crochet technique or material or something. So, I don't know, we'll just pick some random pictures. So maybe these four pictures I want to include in this blog post. So all I have to do then is click and drag them over to this album and you can see a little icon that temporarily appeared on the image to let me know that it's now part of an album and that's really all there is to albums. I can see those images then, of course, if I click on the name of the album over here. I can see this. If I want to remove any of those images from here, I can just right click and choose remove from the blog post album. So that's it, that's pretty easy. Now I've got all these ready to go. One thing that I find most useful for this is now if I've got these here, let's say I want to prepare them to put, maybe I wanna put them in a Dropbox folder or something so I can give them to someone else and I don't wanna have to try to dig through my hard drive and find them. There are different ways you can share your files from Elements, so now that they're grouped in this handy little album, I could decide, okay, well I'm just gonna email these or whatever. So I could select all of them, come up to this share button, and you'll notice there's all kinds of options. You can share directly to Facebook from Elements, or, in this case, probably what I'd wanna do is maybe email or post them to Flickr or something like that. So if I click on email, oh maybe I shouldn't. I don't know if it's gonna pop up my email or not. I guess I didn't set it up in here since we just reset all my preferences, so that's good 'cause I don't wanna actually go through all that right now and it's thinking about it, there we go. So you can do that, and the place where you would set up your email is actually over in your Elements Organizer. You can connect to your services and service preference and over here in your preferences, so Elements Organizer, preferences, if you're on a PC, then you'll find your preferences under the edit menu, so edit, preferences, or on a Mac, it's under Elements Organizer, preferences. And here's where we can find our email and we can configure various email clients so we would select the mail and then over here you can select your service provider and just sort of follow through their little wizard to set that up. So you know, it's just like setting it up on your phone or whatever. You just kinda have to walk through the little system, but that's how that works. So then I can go ahead and email those and in that process you'll have the opportunity to downsize them if you need to for email, obviously, so that's kinda nice. One feature that I really like though is actually an export feature and for whatever reason I use this more frequently because, I don't know, I just don't always set up all those little service plugins and things, so what I prefer to do is actually export these files, and maybe, that's because I wanna just throw them on a jump drive and be able to hand that over to someone, or take it with me for some project. Once I've got these designated in this album, and I've got them selected here, I'm just gonna come up to this file menu, and I'm gonna choose export as new files. You can also, there is the option, of course, to just copy and move it to a removable drive. The difference is that when you export them, you get options to resize them or change the file format, and do a number of other little things that you don't get if you just copy or move them, but this is a really nice option to have too. It's more direct, if I don't care to resize the files or do anything like that, then I might choose this, and then, you know, you just follow through the process, and dump those on a drive, but let's say that I also want to resize them or change their format. I'm gonna choose export as new files. Then, I get this options, where I can go through and say okay, I'm gonna keep the original format, or maybe, if I happen to have RAW files or anything in here, I wanna export to JPEG, and I'm gonna go ahead, and just select that. These are all already JPEGs, but if they weren't, I'd probably wanna make them JPEGs, and here's where I can choose the size and qualities. If I know these are gonna be in a blog post, I don't probably wanna send over the full-size image because that's just really big, and then whoever's receiving these images would have to do a bunch of work to them, and it's always nice when you're sharing files, if you can share ready-to-use files. I'm gonna go ahead and change that. Let's say we wanna downsize these to like 640 by 480, and maybe the quality can just be like an eight. Here's where you choose the location of where you'd wanna put these, and of course, what I always do is put it on my desktop, so we'll click browse. We'll go to desktop, and make a new folder, and I'll just call it exported images, and hit create, click okay. What it's gonna do is copy and process those files, so it's gonna take the original file, make a copy of it, convert it to JPEG if it's not already, resize it as directed, and if I want to, it will also rename the files. If I leave it original, obviously it won't do that. Common base name, this can be nice, especially for a specific project, so like here, if I'm exporting these for a blog post, for example, and I'm giving it to someone else, maybe with another company, maybe they're gonna publish this on their blog, and these are the images coming from me. It might be helpful to the person who's receiving these images to just have an easy way to know where they came from, even if they got scattered on their hard drive somehow, so maybe I would put a base name here, like maybe my last name, and put like Plicanic underscore, I don't know, crochet, or whatever is relevant, and then I'd go ahead and click export, and it's gonna process those four files. It tells me they've been exported, I'll click okay, and now if I want to just take a peek at my, go down here and grab finder, and go to my horribly-messy desktop. What did we call that, exported files, exported images. Here it is, and we see that it called it Plicanic_Crochet dash one, two, three, and four, and we see that the file size is pretty small, and that's exactly what we want, that's exactly what we told it to do, so good job, Photoshop, way to go. We got exactly what we needed there. Again, that was just an album that we use to create virtual collections. I wanna stress that by dragging the images over here, we've not moved them on the hard drive. We've just created a virtual grouping that we can use to pull these images for whatever kind of special projects that we might me working on. That's a look at albums. If you decide you don't care about having this album anymore, now that I've fictitiously sent this off to my fictitious person for this fictitious blog post, I could right click and say, eh, delete, and it's saying, are you sure, and it's reminding you that the media that's part of this, meaning these four images that are in this album, they're not gonna be deleted. The only thing being deleted is the virtual construct of the album itself, so I'll go ahead and say okay, and here we are, back looking at our search results for the crochet keyword. That's how albums work. The next way that you can find your images that is really, again, pretty cool is this people workspace, so I'm gonna click back to get out of the search, and we're gonna leave the comfort of our media workspace that we've spent all this time in, and I'm gonna pop over to the people workspace, and here we see, oh my goodness, there's people already showing up here. I did not do any of this. This Elements has done on its own without any input from me, so in addition to automatically recognizing the objects in our photos, Elements can recognize the people in your photos, and this has sort of been around, the ability to try to auto tag people has been around for a long time in Elements, but it was never this handy. This is the best incarnation of it that I have seen, so I'm really pretty excited about this, and I think, for right now, I'm gonna pop back over to media. Let's go to folders, just to reduce this a little bit. Well, now we don't have as many, so we'll keep that back with all of our people. So, we can see this in action. I just thought this might be a lot, so right now it's finding what's really just two different people. We see this is my son, Ze, this is also my son, Ze, also Ze, and then this is my husband over here, so why is it putting Ze across three different stacks of images? Well, that's because he is a baby, and he's been growing a lot, and Elements doesn't realize that these are all the same person, so we're gonna help it to figure that out. Now, I think it's still, maybe, loading some of this stuff. As you work with these faces, you're supposed to be able to just drag your mouse, or hover really, hover your mouse across these little circles and then, it will show you. In this case, it found 12 photos that it thinks are all the same person, and when you mouse across it, you see a preview of each of those photos. It was working this morning, and last now, and now I'm getting just this little icon, so I don't know if the update that I installed messed with that, or what's going on, but that is what's supposed to happen, but if it's not happening, I can also just click to see the photos down here. This is just a little bonus preview that makes it easy to scan quickly and say, oh yeah, that's all the same person, but clearly, that's not happening right now, so I'm just gonna click the photo button down here, and then I can scan all these images, and see, oh yeah, those are all the same person. Let's check this one, and we'll also click photos. Also, those are all Ze, and over here, those are all Ze, so it turns out that Elements has three stacks of pictures that are all Ze, so what I want to do is merge these, I wanna be able to tell Elements that these are all the same person, so I'm going to hold down the shift key and click each of these little stacks so that they're all highlighted. I know that they're highlighted 'cause I can see this blue outline around the circle. Once they're highlighted, if I look down here below, you'll notice that there's a little button that says merge people, so I'm gonna click to merge people, and it's saying who is this. Well, this is Ze, so I'm gonna type in his name. I could, if I wanted to, you can connect Facebook to your organizer, and then, it'll pull from your friends list, and have auto-suggested tags here, but I am just not even gonna go there. I have enough of Facebook, so I'm gonna leave that away from here, but I'll go ahead and click okay, and now we see that it merged them, and they disappeared, and now it looks like what, where did they go? They have just been moved from the unnamed category, so in other words, people that Photoshop has found, but doesn't know who they are, now they will appear over here in the named category. This little question mark just means it's not quite sure about a couple things, so it's saying wait a minute, I found some other images that might be Ze. Let's see if they're really all him, so I'm gonna click here, and I can scroll through and see. If it's gonna load, they're a little bit slow today. Hmm, that doesn't look like Ze, I don't think, but we'll scroll through here, and I can see, yep, I think they're all him, but mmm, not that, so I'll cancel that one, and yep, that's all him, so excellent, I can go back. We'll close that, and now you see how this preview works. You see that? As I drag my mouse across, now it's working. Now, we see all these photos that have been confirmed as Ze, so that is the named section, so if I go back to the unnamed section, we see, I still have this picture of my husband, and the preview's not working over here for whatever reason, so I'll click down here, and I see yep, yep, yep, yep, that's all him, so I'll just click to add his name, and click check, and now that will also disappear and pop over to the named section. Again, it's giving me this question mark, and it's saying, okay these are confirmed him, but what about these? Are these also him, yes, and yes. Now, instead of just the four photos, we've got six. Where is it pulling those from? Well, if we go back to the unnamed stack, right now it looks like that's it, we've tagged all the faces, but what Elements does to avoid overwhelming you is it hides small stacks, so if you have some people that are in your photos, but not in a large number of photos, they get hidden from here because Elements figures, eh, you probably don't wanna go through and create tags for all these people that may only appear in one photo of your whole catalog. Just to show you what that looks like, I'm gonna uncheck this, and now I can see, oh, there's some more pictures of my son, and some other, my sister over here, and I guess, it's me that it's looking at in that picture, so there's actually a number of other stacks of photos, and some of them should be added to Ze because, for example, they found a lot more pictures of him that it didn't recognize were him. If I click on that I can start typing his name, and it will pop up, and then I can confirm it. I should be able to select multiple instances, in case, like here's four for example, and I can add, oo, maybe it won't let me do it all at once. Na, didn't do it all at once, but I can just go through and quickly say that's him, or I could do the merge thing, and then it's saying who is it, and I would say, that's Ze. It's gonna do all of that. There's some people in here that it's finding that I have no idea who they are. That is a little bit frightening at first when you look at your photos, and I'm like, who are these people? I have no idea, so what do I do? I click on the photo, and then I see that this is a photo taken from the primary election, and we were at our caucus back home, and I can see that it's pulling just like the random people in the background in the crowd that were also there. I don't know who these people are. I don't want them, well that's my husband. (chuckles) So, we'll add him, that's good. A lot of these other people, I don't know who they are, so anyone that I don't wanna see in here ever again, I can just select them, and then I can say, don't show me those again 'cause I don't know who that is, it's not relevant. I think this guy, yeah, he's also from there, so I don't care to see that. That's a little bit about how the faces works, so as you go through and either merge people. Here's more of Ze, it's tricky with the little kids. I think they end up in more stacks because as they grow, they change so much, and here, of course, we have him with hats and glasses, so Elements gets confused, so you may have to merge a lot for kids that are appearing in things. Sometimes it'll find things that are not faces. For example, any of these, like what is this? That's a picture of birds, but for whatever reason, this pattern is being recognized and thought to be a face, so that'd be an example of one I don't need to see again. Sometimes, it's surprising what it finds. If you scroll through here, it finds faces that really are faces, but you didn't even know they were in your picture. There's one, I don't know where it is, I might have cleared it already, where it found, this one, so this is clearly a face, so good job Elements, where is this face? Look at this picture, this is a picture of like a newspaper stand, (chuckles) and somehow on the newspaper, or some of the ads on the container, it saw a face, and recognized it, so that's pretty impressive, but I don't know who that is, and didn't mean to include really a person there so we can go ahead and get rid of that. That's how the people workspace works, and you would just work through all of this stuff moving people from unnamed, and as you name them and create tags for them, they will move over here to your named category. Again, if you don't care to be this tedious about all the faces, then you can hide small stacks, but I look, like when I look in here, I also see, there's my nephew. There's somewhere, I just saw my parents, so I would obviously wanna add those people, but then maybe the rest, I don't even care to really mark them as don't show me these because they're small stacks anyways, so I'd go ahead and just hide those, and I think that'd be good. Now, the cool thing is if we pop back over to our media workspace, and we come down here, we've got the keyword tags we already talked about, but now that we've tagged some people in our people workspace, now those tags are gonna show up under the people tag, so now I can search for pictures of Ze by just clicking next to his name, and what's cool is I didn't have to manually tag those faces. I had to confirm that what Elements found was, indeed, pictures of Ze, but I didn't have to manually tag photos and say, here is Ze, here's another picture of Ze. Elements automatically did that, so if you are a person who's thinking that's so cool, but I just know myself, and I know I won't spend the time to create all these tags, you don't have to, you can just let the auto-recognition work, and then take advantage of it so it already made these tags. One thing I will also show you, I guess, is if you are looking at a picture, let's say, that does have a face, and maybe, Elements missed it, which I don't think I had an instance of that, but it might not recognize a face. If I took a picture of Ze playing, and he was like upside down or something, it may not recognize his face, so if I want to add a face. See, it already found him here, but maybe I wanna add a face to this, maybe his cousin is peeking out from behind the chair and Elements didn't notice that. If I wanted to add a face, all I have to do is double click the image to see a larger version, and then there's a button down here to mark a face, so if his little cousin was peeking out, and booing us from behind the chair, I could just drag the frame around their face, and then I could go ahead and name it and click the check mark and a tag would be created over here under people tags, and then I would see them under the people workspace, (chuckles) and that would be helpful, so that's how the people tags work, you can see it's very useful. You can also group them, I guess I should point out. You can create groups, there are some groups already here for colleagues, family, and friends, so if you want to, you can drag people over there, so I would go to my named people and I can just drag Ze over here, he's family. My husband's obviously family too, so you could group it like that if you find that useful. If not, don't feel like you have to.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Resource Guide
Class Images
Project Mockups

Ratings and Reviews


Just watching this class live. It's my first class with Khara; she is a wonderful teacher, moving at a steady speed but always being careful to let us know what she's doing in the moment. I would classify myself as intermediate in terms of PSE but I've learned lots of little things that will make further use even easier and more fun. I really appreciated her descriptions of the difference between PS and PSE and her encouragement in using Photoshop Elements and all that it can do.


I have only been able to watch portions of this class but every single part that I have watched has been technically clear and inspiring to me. Based on this experience and the thorough, 58 item list of lessons, I will surely be buying this class soon! Thank you Khara and Creativelive for making a class on this topic and making it be super!!

Ven S

Great course. You can tell she knows the programme inside out.

Student Work