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Step 2: Delete the Worthless Shots

Each shoot likely includes some photos that you really like, some that are just okay, and perhaps a few so messed up that you’ll obviously want to delete them (see Figure 3). These bad photos are just taking up space on your computer. Since you have a backup of all the originals, I recommend trashing the worthless pictures immediately. As soon as you see one of these hopeless shots, click it and press Delete (PC: Backspace) on your keyboard. A dialog box appears, asking how badly you hate this photo (see Figure 4). You have a couple of options:

  • The Remove option removes the image from Lightroom, but that bad photo still lives on your computer, wasting space.
  • Clicking Delete removes the image from Lightroom and from your computer, freeing space for more photos. Deleting worthless photos also makes the sorting and organizing process easier when you’ve weeded down to the good stuff, because you won’t be managing photos you don’t want. The fewer photos you have to manage, the faster that process becomes. Get rid of your lame photos now, and your sorting life gets better in many ways.

Here’s a tip. In the Expanded Cell view, information about the photo is displayed at the top of the cell. Some of this info might be helpful in making decisions about which images to keep and which to pitch. If you click directly on any of that info, a pop-up menu of other data, including camera data and IPTC metadata, can be displayed there instead—just choose the data you want from the list (see Figure 5). To hide all the visible extras (badges, rating stars, and so on) in Expanded Cell view, press Command-Shift-H [PC: Ctrl-Shift-H].

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