Un-Rejecting Photos


Today’s Question: I have marked lots of images as rejected (X) [in Lightroom Classic] but changed my mind. Now I’d like to batch uncheck rejected (X) those photos. How can I do that?

Tim’s Quick Answer: You can remove the Reject flag in Lightroom Classic with the “U” keyboard shortcut, for “unflag”. If you want to unflag multiple selected photos at one time, just be sure you are in the grid view (not the loupe view) before pressing “U” on the keyboard.

More Detail: The Pick and Reject flags in Lightroom enable you to review photos and make a “yes” or “no” decision about whether each photo is a favorite. You can add a Pick flag by pressing the “P” key, or a Reject flag by pressing the “X” key. If you change your mind and want to remove either flag, you can press “U” to unflag. This will remove either the Pick or Reject flag from the image, as applicable.

If you want to remove a Pick or Reject flag (or otherwise apply metadata updates) for multiple images, I recommend working in the grid view. If you are in the loupe view, even with multiple photos selected, by default only the single image shown in the loupe view will be updated when you use a keyboard shortcut for a metadata change. In the grid view all of the selected photos will be updated when you apply a metadata change.

Because of this behavior, I recommend switching to the grid view (by pressing “G” on the keyboard) before selecting multiple photos. You can then apply the desired change for all selected photos.

Note that I generally recommend using star ratings rather than Pick and Reject flags in Lightroom Classic, because star ratings are standard metadata that can be saved out to the actual image files. Pick and Reject flags can only be included in your Lightroom catalog, not in the metadata for the actual images. I do use Reject flags as an interim step before deleting outtakes, but for managing my photos in terms of “favorite” status, I use star ratings.