Lightroom Classic: Best way to create a catalog on certain images

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Even though I have been using lightroom for many years, I still feel that what I do in Lightroom could surely be done more efficiently.

I would be happy to have your opinion on how best to create a compact catalogue of only some of the images on my hard disk....

Here is my problem: some time ago I created a catalogue of my entire 12 terra hard drive. This catalogue was so big that it couldn't fit on my internal hard drive and had to be saved on an external hard drive. The catalogue was too large, which meant that the handling in Lightroom was relatively slow.

To work more efficiently I created a catalogue on each of 3 portions of this large hard disk. These catalogues are roughly 3 times smaller and fit individually on my internal hard disk and the handling was much faster.

Today I have selected my best images on my entire hard disk. I have created keywords that are written in xmp files (so not linked to existing catalogues) and I would like to create a catalogue with the best images thanks to these keywords across the 3 portions. This catalogue will not be very big. It will allow me to access only all of my best images that are distributed in very different places on my hard disk.

I thought of several ideas to create this catalogue of my best images: 
- The first idea is to start from a copy of one of the existing catalogues that work on a portion of the hard disk. To remove from this catalog but of course not the hard disk all the images that are not the best images and then to start cataloguing the other two portions by then deleting the images that are not among the best images.

- Another idea would be to start from the very large catalogue and delete from the caralogue only all the images that are not the best chosen but this option frightens me because I can't imagine that a catalogue that doesn't work well becomes in top form....

These are the 2 ways I see to create this famous catalogue that I want to create but maybe there are other options that I don't know about.

I am thinking, for example, of the possibility of cataloguing only certain images that carry a particular keyword. I don't know if that's possible.

Maybe there is yet another way to achieve this objective, a more operational way... ?

I'd be happy to have a recommendation from the community.

Thibaud Rebour
www.rebour.fr
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Thibaud Rebour

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Posted 3 months ago

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Rikk Flohr, Official Rep

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If I understand you correctly this is the simple description of how it works:
  1. Go to Catalog 1>All Photos>Go to Grid>Enter Keyword in Search Bar>Select All>File-Export as Catalog-called A.
  2. Go to Catalog 2>All Photos>Go to Grid>Enter Keyword in Search Bar>Select All>File-Export as Catalog called B.
  3. Go to Catalog 3>All Photos>Go to Grid>Enter Keyword in Search Bar>Select All>File-Export as Catalog called C.
  4. Go to Catalog created in Step 1 (A) and open it.
  5. File>Import from another catalog>Catalog B.
  6. File>Import from another catalog>Catalog C.
  7. Catalog created in Step 1 (A) now contains the images, edits and metadata of the special keyworded photos of all 3 masters. 
  8. Clean up folders and collections as necessary
Resources: https://www.lightroomqueen.com/merging-catalogs-overview/
https://www.lightroomqueen.com/community/threads/splitting-a-catalog.4828/

A backup of catalogs is always prudent before making an attempt!