Adding to the Keyword List


Today’s Question: Regarding the helpful option to search for keywords you addressed [using Lightroom Classic], what happens if you search and find that the keyword isn’t on the list? Can you add a keyword right from the Keyword List or do you have to go to the Keywording section?

Tim’s Quick Answer: You can add keywords in the Keyword List section of the right panel in the Library module in Lightroom Classic by clicking the plus symbol (+) to the left of the Keyword List heading. This is the approach I consider the best option when it comes adding new keywords.

More Detail: There are several ways you can add new keywords and assign those keywords to photos in Lightroom Classic. I recommend using the Keyword List when it comes to adding new keywords in order to ensure you are being consistent in terms of creating new keywords.

As today’s question indicates, I previously discussed the option to search the Keyword List using the search field at the top of the list. This makes it easy to quickly locate a keyword you want to assign, and also provides the opportunity to determine if a keyword already exists. For example, if you intended to add the keyword “oxen” to a photo you might search for “ox” and discover that you already had “ox” as a keyword. You may therefore decide there is no need to add the plural form, since the singular form of the word is already a keyword in use.

Similarly, you might discover through a search that the keyword you want to add isn’t already present on the Keyword List. In that case you can simply click the plus symbol (+) to the left of the Keyword List label to bring up the Create Keyword Tag dialog.

In the Create Keyword Tag dialog you can enter the keyword into the Keyword Name field. If there are synonyms for the keyword you can add those to the Synonyms field. For example, I often include the local language as a synonym for keywords representing the name of a country. When adding “Italy” as a keyword I would therefore add “Italia” (the Italian spelling) as a synonym for the keyword.

You can also choose the preferred options for including the keyword when exporting an image using the three checkboxes representing those options. If the keyword is for a person you want to identify using the People view, you can turn on the Person checkbox.

Finally, you can turn on the “Add to selected photos” checkbox if you would like the new keyword you’re creating to be added to the currently selected photos. Then click the Create button to create the new keyword, which will then of course be added to the Keyword List.