Locking Filter Settings


Today’s Question: Is there any way you know of to have Lightroom Classic retain the metadata filters established so that they are not reset if I import photos or otherwise switch to a different folder or collection?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes, you can lock the filter settings to prevent the settings from resetting when switching to a different folder or collection by clicking the lock icon toward the top-right of the Library Filter bar.

More Detail: You can use the various settings on the Library Filter bar to filter which images are currently visible, which effectively provides a search feature. By default, the filter settings revert to “None” when you navigate to a different folder or collection, meaning no filter is applied and all photos in that folder or collection will be displayed.

However, you can lock the filter criteria so you can navigate among different folders and collections while retaining the filter settings. I use this frequently when looking for a photo to use in a project, for example. I set a filter based on star ratings, and lock that filter by clicking the lock icon at the top-right of the Library Filter bar. Therefore, as I navigate among different folders or collections, I’m only seeing those images that meet the filter criteria.

You can obviously turn off the lock as well by clicking on the icon again, but my approach is to leave the Library Filter settings locked always. When I want to see all photos in a given location, I click the “None” option on the Library Filter bar, so no filter criteria are set. I can then re-establish filter settings any time I want to filter my images.

Note that the lock icon for the Library Filter bar is relatively small, and it isn’t especially easy to see the difference between the locked and unlocked state. When unlocked there is a slight gap between the shackle and the body of the lock.