by Julieanne Kost

 Comments (8)


April 12, 2011

It can be much easier/faster to create a keyword list using a simple text editor. These lists can be easily imported into Lightroom using Metadata > Import Keywords. If you want to create a hierarchical list, simply use tabs to designate the primary (parent) and secondary (child) category. For example:

(tab) represents a “tab” because I couldn’t figure out how to have WordPress keep the formatting – sorry!)


(tab) Los Angeles

(tab)(tab) Beverly HIlls

(tab)(tab) The Getty

(tab) San Francisco

(tab)(tab) Palace of Fine Arts

(tab)(tab) Golden Gate Bridge

Likewise you can export (Keywords Metadata > Export Keywords) to share with different machines/peers.  If you have keywords that you want to import from Bridge, use the drop down menu on the Keywords panel to select Export (in Bridge), then return to Lightroom and choose Metadata Import Keywords navigate to and select the exported file from Bridge.



  • By Kevin M. - 7:36 AM on April 12, 2011  

    Awesome! Great tip Julieanne. Thank you.

  • By Kayla - 8:55 AM on April 12, 2011  

    Great tip – thanks!

  • By Lorraine - 3:32 PM on April 25, 2011  

    Suppose a person had begun keywording in LR in a rather… spontaneous manner. Can you go back later and organize them in this logical and hierarchical way or would it be starting over? (Not that I know anyone who would do anything so undisciplined, but just in case…)

    • By Julieanne Kost - 12:29 PM on April 26, 2011  

      If you want to use hierarchal keywords, then add the keywords after importing into LR. I made the mistake of adding keywords on import (that I already had in my hierarchy), so now I have the same keyword twice. Once I discovered what I did, I simply continued to add the keywords on import (because it’s so easy) and I’m hoping that someone, someday will develop a way to convert the flat keywords into a hierarchy with the “click of a button”.
      If anyone knows of something that will do this automatically please feel free to comment!

  • By Norm Ford - 4:01 PM on September 8, 2012  

    I’m setting up lightboxes with, I massage my images in LR3 and then export them to my HDD & then I upload to them Globaliamges. Probably many of you aren’t aware of this service but they do not deduct a commission on a sale.
    I’ve created a Filename Structure that allows me to find an image on my HDD, but I want to include the file’s caption/keywords so that viewers can identify the image when viewed in the lightbox, but I’m having trouble including the caption/keyword in the export. Is there anywhere the metadata fields offer a definition or link as to their explanation?
    Thank you
    Norm Ford

    • By Julieanne Kost - 2:58 PM on September 13, 2012  

      What are your setting when exporting from LR? There is a metadata area in the export module, I would suggest that you choose one of the settings that includes keywords (“All” or “All Except Camera Raw and Camera Raw Info”).

  • By rtjhomaslyons - 12:36 PM on January 6, 2013  

    OK when I first got Lightroom I somehow managed to create a keywords hierarchy his do I undo this without losing the key words attached to a picture?

    • By Julieanne Kost - 4:38 PM on January 8, 2013  

      In the Keywords List panel in Lightroom, you can drag and drop the keywords out of the hierarchy. (You will see a line appear when you drag it out of the parent keyword – when the keyword is going to be moved out of the parent folder, the line will have a circle on the right).