Exercise: portraiture archive

These photos are from my archive, but not taken by me. One would not usually expect to see them together as they cover a long time period, showing me and my children ageing; a range of discrete activities, from personal holidays and family photos to business trips; and a range of different locations. They are in some ways incongruous.

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What I discovered during this exercise was the difficulty in searching the archive for the photos; my archive is currently arranged mostly in folders by year and month, so searching it requires time consuming serial viewing. This encouraged me to explore practices for digital archiving (see separate post) and further to that the use of keywording in Lightroom.

‘Learn to Lightroom’ provides a good introduction to keyword hierarchies, which I’ve now spent several hours building into my LR catalogue. The hierarchy defines typologies, which can be used to reference photos in the catalogue. For example, I have a top-level keyword of ‘human emotion’ and within that the types of emotions (eg happiness) and within those characteristics that reveal the emotions (eg smile). Lightroom automatically tags the photo with the lowest level tag and those to the type to which it belongs. A readymade typological tool-box!


Learn to Lightroom [website]. Keyword Hierarchies. Available from: http://www.learn-to-lightroom.com/articles/keyword-hierarchies/ [accessed 22.7.16]


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