Today’s Question: Can you remind me how to make a folder at the same level as all of my other folders in Lightroom [Classic]? For example, I want to be able to divide the images in one folder into two folders, so I need to make a folder at the same level as the existing folder.
Tim’s Quick Answer: You can create a new “top level” folder by either using the option to create a sub-folder below the higher-level folder (which could be the hard drive itself), or by using the “Add Folder” command to create a new folder anywhere.
More Detail: The “Add Folder” command is perhaps the most flexible way to add a new empty folder that is visible within Lightroom Classic, so you can then drag-and-drop photos into that folder from any other folder being managed by Lightroom. However, as I’ll clarify shortly, it also has the potential to be a little confusing to use.
To create a new folder in this way, you first click the plus symbol (+) to the right of the Folders heading on the left panel in the Library module, and then choose “Add Folder” from the popup menu.
In the popup menu that appears you can navigate to the location where you want to create the folder. This might mean simply navigating to an external hard drive, for example, or it might mean creating a folder within a “parent” folder such as the Pictures folder on your computer’s internal hard drive.
After navigating to the applicable location, you can click the New Folder button at the bottom-left of the dialog and enter a name for the new folder. Then click “Create” to actually create the new folder and click Choose to finalize the process.
One of the challenges with the “Add Folder” command is that it can be a little confusing to navigate to the correct location where you actually want to create the new folder. Therefore, I generally recommend the “Add Subfolder” command instead.
The key to the “Add Subfolder” command is to select the parent folder where you want to create a new folder. In the case of a “top level” folder, that often means selecting the hard drive itself, which by default won’t be listed among the folders on the Folders list on the left panel. If that’s the case, you can reveal the parent folder (or hard drive) by right-clicking on one of the existing top-level folders and choosing the “Show Parent Folder” command. This will reveal the parent folder (or hard drive) at the top of the list of folders. You can then click on that folder (or hard drive) name, then click the plus symbol (+) to the right of the Folders heading on the left panel. From the popup menu that appears, choose “Add Subfolder”.
With the “Add Subfolder” command all you need to do is enter a name for the new folder, which will become a subfolder of the parent folder (or hard drive) you had selected. In other words, it will be created as a folder at the same level as the existing folder you wanted to split into more than one folder for your photos.
Admittedly, the “Add Subfolder” option probably sounds a bit more confusing than the “Add Folder” option. However, I do find that many photographers find the actual process of using the “Add Subfolder” command less confusing than using the “Add Folder” command.