Skip to main content

Quick Start to Capture One

Lesson 7 of 20

Virtual Organization


Quick Start to Capture One

Lesson 7 of 20

Virtual Organization


Lesson Info

Virtual Organization

The whole point of having a catalog is that it is a database. And a database is very powerful for searching for images and finding images. So what we can do is some virtual organization. And the difference with virtual organization is that nothing is moved on disk. It all stays where it is, but we use the power of the database and such to do organization. So I'll give you some examples as well. We'll switch over, over here in the User Collections. So if we go to All Images again, that shows me all images in my catalog. We're now up to 85. And I can say Plus here, and we have four different kinds of virtual organization elements that we can use. Two of them you'll probably recognize straight away, which is Album and Smart Album. Likely you'll know these as Collection and Smart Collection. It's exactly the same thing. We also have Project and Group, which you probably won't recognize. We'll show you what those are. So let's just make an album, this is a super simple one. Let's just call ...

these... In this case we could call this My Headshots. And then you can simply, as I'm sure you guessed, drag and drop any number of images from any location into this collective collection, if you like. So now I have four images. Let's make that bigger. Now I have four images in this collection. If I want to remove an image from that collection, you'll see here Command + Backspace, so Delete From Album. That only takes it out the album, it doesn't physically delete it off disk. So, albums are a good way of just having a quick depository of dumping images in there. If you just want to, say, have my best selection of images or images from a particular shoot, or stuff you're putting to the side to print or something like that. And the good thing about using virtual collections is that images can appear in multiple collections. So if we go back to All Images and I make a new one called Stuff to Print, for example, then there's no reason why this one can't also belong in Stuff to Print, like so. Now, with organizing physically on disk, your raw file only ever exists in one location. Unless you start duplicating raw files, which is crazy, because that fills up hard drive space, you don't know which is the current raw file, which one has the latest settings and so on. So if you like the idea of files being able to belong in different collections, then virtual organization is definitely for you. Smart albums, again you can probably guess what that means, but if we make a new smart album, we get an additional dialog, and you have to tell the smart album what kind of images you want inside it. So a smart album populates itself. So, a very simple option is Five Star Images. And you have a search criteria here, which can be as simple or as in depth as you wish, but I'm simply going to say that the rating equals, of various other options, five. So the rating must equal five for this image to appear in this album. So now if I grab any image from anywhere and make it five stars like so, then it will pop up in my Five Star Album actually along with all the other five star images which already had five stars from this collection. But if I make this one zero, then he disappears straight away. If we go to this one and make that five, then it will pop up straight away in this album. So, smart album's really good at kind of doing the drag and drop for you, if you like, because you simply define the criteria, and then once you've gone through and rated images, or color tagged, or added keywords or whatever, then it's a self-populating organization tool, really, really powerful. The last couple, let's go back to All Images. We can say Project, and for those of you on Aperture, this might make a bit more sense. But a project allows you to comfortably organize a whole bunch of albums, smart albums under one umbrella. So let's say that we've got a project called L.A. Headshots. And you notice that the icon looks a little bit different than the other ones, so you can see this is an album, this is a smart album 'cause it has the little cog, and this is a project, which looks like a cardboard box, which you put your filing, financial stuff in, so one of those storage boxes. You'll notice that if I try, I can't drag and drop an image into my project. So we can't store images in projects directly. We have to give it some albums and smart albums. So if I right-click and say New Inside, I can then say Album. So let's make one called All Images, like so. And let's put, let's just grab these first six like so. So now we've got a project within these nice six images. Now let's make a smart album in here exactly like we did before, right-click. We'll call this one Five Star Images again. We can use a preset, actually, which is just a quick way to make smart albums. And now we have All Images and Five Star Images. Now look at the difference between this collection and this collection. And this is the whole point of having a project, that this smart album, this one here, only searches images that exist in this project. So this smart album here searches your entire catalog, so anything in the catalog that is five star will be in here. This one will only look for images that are in that project. So, projects are really powerful, for if you like controlling the scope of the smart album. So the smart album in a project is only gonna look in that project. If you take a smart album out of the project, then it's gonna look at the whole catalog. So, it's a very powerful way of organizing. And the very, very last organizational item is like the housekeeper, it's the clean up one. It's basically a simple folder. So it's called a group. So if we wanted to say, let's call this Commercial Work. Commercial Work, and what we can do is we can drag this project inside, so I could have all my commercial work. And then we could have another group called Personal Work, for example. And then I could just put these various things inside like so. So it's just a way of cleaning up this area, 'cause you could imagine, as you're catalog grows, you'll use a collection area, starts to get full of albums, smart albums, projects and so on. Eventually, it's gonna fall off the end of the screen, so if we can then take those projects and albums and categorize them a bit better, that's the purpose of using the group. Can you have a group inside a group? Yes, yes, you can. So if we had, let's think. So if we had Commercial Work, we could then right-click and say New Inside here, put another group, and say, let's say you're lucky enough to work for Creative Live, for example, then we could drop that inside there like so. So it's, if you're a tidy freak like me, and you like to categorize everything in millions of folders, then that's what a group does. So you can sub-categorize everything. It has no special superpowers like the project. It's just a simple tool to tidy everything up.

Class Description

Whatever your current RAW converter or imaging software is, this course will help you make a smooth transition to Capture One and give your images a new look. Join David Grover, a Capture One educator and expert, as he shows you how to overcome the initial hurdles of learning a new program and hit the ground running.

In this class you’ll learn:

  • The interface and terminology Capture One uses
  • How to setup the workspace and shortcuts so they become familiar to you
  • The 10 most important things you need to know for everyday workflow and adjustment
  • How to make your images shine with Capture One’s RAW conversion engine

By the end of this class, you’ll be able to start importing your image into Capture One and create new and creative images!

Software Used: Capture One Pro 10


Juan Sebastián Echeverri

This class is a great introduction to Capture One. David covers the CO environment including the basics of tools, tool tabs, toolbar, cursor tools, action buttons, the viewer, and the browser. It includes some useful shortcuts and best practices for an efficient workflow.


David is extremely well versed in CaptureOne Pro and he has the ability to share his knowledge in a way that is easy to follow and understand. My time in the audience was well spent, increasing my knowledge of CaptureOne basics. I would particularly recommend this class to anyone who is relatively new to CaptureOne or who is considering making CaptureOne part of their photo editing process.

Dan Donovan

A comprehensive overview of Capture One. David does a FANTASTIC job of getting you started with Capture One!