Learn how tagging and using people, places, or events tags lets you easily organize your media by managing your files and making them more search friendly.

Tagging makes your media easier to manage and search-friendly. You can use tags to identify photos and videos with keywords and retrieve individual media files or albums. Additionally; people, place, or events tags let you easily organize your media.

Elements Organizer provides two ways of tagging:

  • Keyword tags: You can manally assign keywords to your media files. You can use categories and sub-categories to better categorize the tags, thus making your media files easier to find. 
  • Smart tags: When you import photos into a catalog, Elements Organizer automatically analyzes your photos and assigns tags, called Smart Tags, to them. Smart Tags make it easy for you to find your photos even when you have not manully tagged them using keywords.

Work with keyword tags

About keyword tags

Keyword tags are personalized keywords, such as “Dad” or “Florida,” that you attach to photos, video files, audio clips, PDFs, and projects in the Media view. Keyword tags enable you to easily organize and find the tagged files. When you use keyword tags, there’s no need to manually organize your media files in subject-specific folders or rename files with content-specific names. Instead, you can simply attach one or more keyword tags to each media file. Then, you can retrieve the media files you want by selecting one or more keyword tags in the Keyword Tags panel. You can also find media files with specific keyword tags when you type a keyword in the Search textbox.

For example, you can create a keyword tag called “Anna” and attach it to every media file featuring your sister, Anna. Then, to instantly find all the media files of Anna that are stored on your computer, select the tag ‘Anna’ in the Keyword Tags panel.

You can create keyword tags using any keywords you want. When media files have multiple keyword tags, you can select a combination of keyword tags to find a particular person at a particular place or event. For example, you can search for all “Anna” keyword tags and all “Marie” keyword tags to find all pictures of Anna with daughter, Marie. Or search for all “Anna” keyword tags and all “Cabo” keyword tags to find all the pictures of Anna vacationing in Cabo San Lucas.

Using the Keyword Tags panel

You create and work with keyword tags in the Keyword Tags panel of the Organize tab.

In the Keyword Tags panel, Elements Organizer includes the following default category: Travel. In addition, if you import media files that already have tags attached, those tags appear under an Imported Keyword Tags category. You can organize tags under these categories and create your own categories and subcategories.

You can perform the following tasks in the Keyword Tags panel:

  • View all the keyword tags, tag categories, and tag subcategories. Click the triangle next to a category or subcategory to expand or collapse the keyword tags under it.

  • Create, edit, and delete keyword tags.

  • Organize keyword tags within the categories and subcategories.

  • Scroll up and down the list of keyword tags.

Create a keyword tag

You can create new keyword tags, under any category or subcategory, to organize media files you’ve recently added to your catalog. New keyword tags have a question mark icon .

tg_create_keywordtag
The Create Keyword Tag dialog box lets you create keyword tags.
  1. Click the New button  in the Keyword Tags panel and choose New Keyword Tag.
  2. In the Create Keyword Tag dialog box, use the Category menu to choose a category or subcategory in which to place the tag.
  3. In the Name box, type a name for the keyword tag.

    Note:

    To change the furigana for the tag name, type a new furigana in the Furigana box.

  4. In the Note box, type any information you want to add about the tag. (For example, you could write that the tag represents vacation photos.)
  5. Click OK.

    The keyword tag appears in the Keyword Tags panel under the category or subcategory you selected.

    Note:

    The first time you attach a keyword tag to a media file, that media file becomes the icon for that keyword tag. To change the icon, see Change a keyword tag icon.

Attach keyword tags to media files

Once you have created a keyword tag, you can attach it to media files associated with the tag. You can attach multiple keyword tags to a media file. The first time you attach a tag to a media file, that photo becomes the icon for that tag. If you drag multiple media files to a keyword tag, the first media file you selected becomes the icon for that tag.

  1. In the Media view, select the media files to which you want to attach the tag. (To select more than one photo, Ctrl-click/Cmd-click the media files.)
  2. To attach one media file to one tag, do one of the following:
    • Drag the tag from the Keyword Tags panel onto the selected media files.

    • Drag the media files onto the tag in the Keyword Tags panel.

  3. To attach keyword tags to multiple media files, do one of the following:
    • Drag the tag from the Keyword Tags panel onto one of the selected media files.

    • Select one or more keyword tags, and then drag the tags onto one of the selected media files.

    • Select one or more keyword tags, and then drag the photos onto one of the selected tags in the Keyword Tags panel.

    Note:

    To apply a tag to all the media files in an album, click the album in the Albums panel. Select all the media files in the Media view. Select the keyword tag from the Keyword Tags panel, and attach the tag to them.  

Find media files by their keyword tags

  1. In the Search bar, begin typing the name of the tag in the box, a list of tags that match the typed letters is populated. For example, if you type D, all tags beginning with the letter D are displayed. You can select the required tag.

    The application finds all media files that have any of those keyword tags attached. If you select a keyword tag category or subcategory that itself has nested subcategories, the application displays all photos in the hierarchy. For example, assume that you have a ‘Wedding’ subcategory that contains the keyword tags ‘Bride’ and ‘Groom’. If you select the ‘Wedding’ subcategory, Elements Organizer displays all media files tagged ‘Bride’ or ‘Groom’.

  2. You can also click on the tag to search for the media associated with that tag. After you click on the tag, the advanced search menu is displayed. You can modify the searches and select other keyword tags to search for the associated media.

Create and apply tags quickly

The Keyword Tags textbox in Elements Organizer interface enables creating and applying tags quickly. This textbox displays a subset of the list of existing tags based on the letter you type. For example, if you type the letter S, the textbox populates a list of tags beginning with the letter S. You can view a subset of this list. You can select an existing tag from this list and apply it to the selected set of assets or create a tag and apply it.

v2_create-apply-tags
Creating and applying tags

Create tags quickly

  1. Select a media file.
  2. Type the name of the tag in the Image Tags field.

  3. Click Add.

Apply tags quickly

  1. Select the assets you want to tag, and do one of the following:
    • Type the name of the tag in the Keyword Tags textbox.

    • Type a letter, for example, A, to view a list of tags beginning with the letter A. Select the tag you want to use.

  2. Click Add.

    The tags are applied to the selected assets.

Create new keyword tag category or subcategory

  1. In the Keyword Tags panel of the Organize tab, click the New button  and choose either New Category or New Sub-Category.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • To create new category, type its name in the Category Name box. Click Choose Color and specify the color you want to appear on the keyword tags in that category. Then click to select an icon from the Category Icon list.

    • To create new subcategory, type its name in the Sub-Category Name box. Then use the Parent Category Or Sub-Category menu to choose a category in which to place the subcategory.

  3. Click OK.

    The new category or subcategory appears in the Keyword Tags panel.

    Note:

    You can edit or delete a subcategory. However, its icon always appears as a plain tag; you cannot add a photo to it.

Editing keyword tags, categories, and subcategories

Change a keyword tag icon

By default, Photoshop Elements creates an icon for a keyword from the first photo to which you’ve attached the tag. You can change this icon to one that better represents the tag.

  1. Select the tag in the Keyword Tags panel.

    Note:

    This feature is not available for tags generated through Face/People Recognition

  2. Click the New button , and select Edit from the menu.
  3. Click Edit Icon in the Edit Keyword Tag dialog box.
  4. You can edit the following properties of an icon:
    • Color: Click Choose Color and select a color to change the color of the icon.

    • Name: Edit the name of the keyword category in Category Name.

    • Category Icon: Select the icon from the options available in Category Icon. Slide horizontally to view the other options for icons.

    Edit Keyword Category
    Edit Keyword Category
  5. Click OK.

Edit a keyword tag category or subcategory

You can change the name of a category or subcategory, or the location of the category or subcategory.

  1. Select the category or subcategory in the Keyword Tags panel. Click the New button , and select Edit from the menu or right-click/ctrl-click a category and select Edit.
  2. You can edit the following properties of an icon:
    • Color: Click Choose Color and select a color to change the color of the icon.

    • Name: Edit the name of the keyword category in Category Name.

    • Category Icon: Select the icon from the options available in Category Icon. Slide horizontally to view the other options for icons.

    Edit Keyword Category
    Edit Keyword Category
  3. Click OK.

Reorganize keyword tags, categories, and subcategories by dragging

By default, keyword tags and subcategories are listed in alphabetical order. However, you can change their order by dragging.

  1. Choose Edit > Preferences > Keyword Tags and Albums (Windows), or Adobe Elements Organizer 15 > Preferences > Keyword Tags and Albums (Mac OS).

  2. In the Enable Manual Sorting Option area, select Manual for Categories, Sub-Categories, and Keyword Tags, and then click OK.
  3. In the Keyword Tags panel, select one or more keyword tags, categories, or subcategories.
  4. Drag the selected items to a new location by doing one of the following:
    • To reorder keyword tags within a category or subcategory, drag the tag until you see a gray line, and then release the mouse button. The tag appears directly under the gray line.

    • To move a tag to a new category, drag the tag over the category you want to move it to; when the category becomes highlighted, release the mouse button.

    • To reorder categories or subcategories, drag the category or subcategory until you see a gray line. When you release the mouse button, the category or subcategory appears directly under the gray line. When you move a category or subcategory, the keyword tags it contains move with it.

    • To embed categories or subcategories into other categories, drag them to the category or subcategory you want, and when the destination category or subcategory becomes highlighted, release the mouse button.

    Note:

    If you make a mistake moving a category or subcategory, making it a subcategory or sub-subcategory, select it and click the New button and select Edit from the menu in the Keyword Tags panel. Then specify the correct location using the Parent Category Or Sub-category menu.

Change a keyword tag to a subcategory or vice versa

  • Do one of the following in the Organize tab:
    • Right-click/control-click a keyword tag in the Keyword Tags panel, and choose Create new subcategory.

    • Right-click/control-click a subcategory in the Keyword Tags panel, and choose Create new subcategory. The subcategory cannot have any keyword tags or subcategories under it.

Delete a category or subcategory

  1. Select one or more categories or subcategories in the Keyword Tags panel.
  2. Right click and choose Delete, and then click OK to confirm the deletion.

Remove keyword tags from photos

  • Depending on the view in the Media view, do one of the following:
    • To remove a keyword tag from one photo in thumbnail view, right-click/control-click the media file and choose Remove Keyword Tag > [tag name].

    • To remove a keyword tag from one photo in larger views, right-click/control-click a category icon under the media file and choose Remove Keyword Tag.

    Note:

    Depending on your view, you can hold the pointer over the category icon to display a list of keyword tags attached to the media file.

    • To remove a keyword tag from multiple media files in any view, Ctrl-click/Cmd-click to select the media files. Then right-click/control-click one of the selected media files and choose Remove Keyword Tag from Selected Items> [tag name].
    • Another way to remove a keyword tag from a photo is select the photo in Media view. The keyword tags appear in the Image Tags panel. Right-click on a tag and select Remove.

Write keyword tag information into your files

When you e‑mail or export tagged JPEG, TIFF, or PSD files from Elements Organizer, tag information is automatically included as an IPTC (International Press Telecommunications Council) keyword in these output files so that when the recipient imports the media file and is prompted to import the associated tags, the tags are attached in their version of Elements Organizer.

If you want to e‑mail or share a media file without using the Elements Organizer e‑mail or export features, you can manually write the tag information into the IPTC Keyword section in the header of the file.

  • In the Media view, select one or more files and choose File > Save Metadata to Files.

    Note:

    It also writes the people/places/event tags in addition to the keyword tags to the file.

Import and export keyword tags

Importing and exporting keyword tags can help you share media files with others of similar interests. For example, suppose that you have created a set of keyword tags for media files related to your hobby. If you save your tag set, your friends with the same hobby can import those tags into their Keyword Tags panel and apply them to their own media files. Alternately, you can import your friends’ keyword tags and apply them to your own media files. You and your friends could then use keywords you have in common to search for media files related to the hobby you share.

Export keyword tags

You can save your current set of keyword tags, including the entire hierarchy of categories and subcategories in your Keyword Tags panel and the tag icons, so that you can share it with someone else. The exported tags file is saved as an XML (Extensible Markup Language) file.

Note:

Exporting tags does not export the photos associated with the tags.

  1. Click the New button  in the Keyword Tags panel and choose Save Keyword Tags To File.
  2. Choose one of the following and click OK:

    Export All Keyword Tags

    Creates a file that contains all of the keyword tags and tag hierarchy.

    Export Specified Keyword Tags

    Creates a file that contains all keyword tags and the tag hierarchy of the category or subcategory you select from the list.

  3. In the Save Keyword Tags To File dialog box that appears, choose a location and enter a name for the file. Then click Save.
Import keyword tags from file

You can import an existing set of keyword tags (saved as an XML file using Save Keyword Tags To File), including the entire hierarchy of categories and subcategories and the icons.

Keyword tags can also be imported by importing images that have other tags in them already. For example, when media files are e-mailed, exported, and edited, or tag information is added, keyword tags are attached.

Note:

Importing keyword tags does not import the photos associated with the tags.

  1. In the Keyword Tags panel, click the New button  and choose Import Keyword Tags From File.
  2. Select the XML (Extensible Markup Language) file in the Import Keyword Tags From File dialog box containing the keyword tags, categories, and subcategories, and then click Open.

Set preferences for the Keyword Tags and Albums panel

  1. In the Elements Organizer, choose Edit > Preferences > Keyword Tags And Albums (Windows), or Adobe Elements Organizer 15 > Preferences > Keyword Tags And Albums (Mac OS).

  2. Specify how to order keyword tags, categories, subcategories, albums, and album categories: alphabetically or manually. If you select Manual for a tag type, you can arrange that tag type in the Keyword Tags panel in the order you want by dragging it.
  3. Specify how to display keyword tags in Keyword Tag Display: by name only or with a small or large icon in addition to the name. Click OK.
  4. To view large icons for keyword tags: Click the symbol in the keyword tags panel and select Show Large Icon. The preference in this flyout and in the Preferences dialog remains in sync.

Work with people, place, or event tags

Photoshop Elements 12 and later

You can define and use people, place, and event tags to easily manage your media. You can create these tags from the corresponding view (for example, the Places view) or from right within the Media view (for example, click Tags/Info in the taskbar and then click Places).

If you’re working with tags in the Media view, you can drag and drop a tag onto the relevant media for quick tagging.

Create people tags

You can organize people tags into groups. Colleagues, Family, and Friends are predefined groups that you can delete if necessary.

  1. Click Tags/Info from the taskbar.

  2. Expand the menu and then click New Person or New Group.

  3. Follow the on-screen instructions and organize your people tags.

Create place tags

  1. Click Tags/Info from the taskbar.

  2. Expand the menu and then click New Place.

  3. In the Add New Place dialog, search for a place.

  4. When prompted, confirm that you want to assign the new location.

  5. Click Done. The new location is added to the Places hierarchy.

Note:

Place tags in Elements 12 and later have GPS coordinates associated with them. These coordinates are also associated with any media tagged with these place tags.

Edit a place tag

You can edit a place to assign different GPS coordinates to it. Follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the place in the Places hierarchy and select Edit This Place.
place-context
Edit a place
  1. On the map that appears, drag the pin corresponding to the place to its new location.
  2. When prompted, confirm that you want to assign the new location.
  3. Click Done. The place appears with a new name in the Places hierarchy.

Rename a place tag

You can change the default names of places. For example, you can rename Lincoln Ave as Home. Follow these steps:

  1. Right-click the place in the Places hierarchy and select Rename.
  2. Enter a new name for the place.
  3. Click OK.

Note:

To delete a place from the Places hierarchy, right-click it and select Delete. Confirm that you want to delete the place.

Assign GPS coordinates to a legacy place tag

Places imported from earlier versions of Elements into Elements 12 and later may not have GPS coordinates associated with them. You can assign GPS coordinates to such places:

  1. Right-click the place in the Places hierarchy and select Place On Map.
  2. On the map that appears, drag the pin corresponding to the place to its new location.
  3. When prompted, confirm that you want to assign the new location.
  4. Click Done.

Create event tags

If necessary, you can organize event tags into groups. To create an event tag, follow these steps:

  1. Click Tags/Info from the taskbar.

  2. Expand the menu and then click New Event.

  3. Enter the following event details:

    • Event name

    • Event start and end dates

    • (Optional) Event group. If you haven’t defined any event groups yet, you’ll see None selected by default for this option.

    • (Optional) Event description

  4. Drag and drop some media associated with the event to the media bin.

    Note:

    The same media may be associated with more than one event.

  5. Click Done.

Note:

If you’re migrating a catalog from Elements 10 or an earlier version, any event categories in the catalog are imported as event groups.

Work with Smart Tags

When you import photos into a catalog, Elements Organizer automatically analyzes the photos and assigns tags to the photos, called Smart Tags. You can remove a Smart Tag if it is not appropriate to an image. For more information about Smart tags, see Using Smart Tags.

Elements Organizer uses Smart Tags as one of the criterias for auto-curating your best images. To know more about auto-curation, see Auto-curate your best photos.

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