Finding Photos where Flash Fired


Today’s Question: Is there a way in Lightroom Classic to find photos where I used the flash? I’m assuming there must be, but I can’t find it!

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes, you can filter photos based on those where the flash fired (or did not fire) using the Flash State column on the Metadata tab of the Library Filter bar.

More Detail: I often say that whatever details you can remember about a photo you’re looking for can probably be used to locate that photo in Lightroom Classic. That is certainly true when it comes to finding photos where the flash fired (or where the flash did not fire). This is made possible by the Flash State column on the Metadata tab of the Library Filter bar.

First, in the Library module, make sure the Library Filter bar is visible above the grid view display. If the Library Filter bar isn’t there, you can press the backslash key (\) on the keyboard or go to the menu and select View > Show Filter Bar. Make sure you’re browsing the folder or collection you want to locate photos within.

On the Library Filter bar go to the Metadata tab. If there are other criteria you want to use for your search, such as the date of capture or the camera that was used, you can specify those among the columns of metadata available. To search by whether the flash fired click the heading for one of the columns and choose “Flash State” from the popup. This column will now show options based on the attributes of the photos you’re currently browsing. If there are photos in the current location for which the flash fired, you’ll see a “Did fire” option in the Flash State column, with a number to the right indicating how many photos match the criteria. If there are photos where the flash was not used, you’ll also see a “Did not fire” option with a count for the number of photos to the right.

Simply click the desired option to filter the current photos to those where the flash did fire (by selecting “Did fire”) or where flash wasn’t used (by selecting “Did not fire”).

Keep in mind that you can also add other metadata options for the overall filter, such as by including the Attribute tab as part of your search. You may, for example, want to filter photos that have a particular star rating as well as where the flash fired, to track down your favorite photos captured with flash.