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////Add Titles, Captions and Other Photo-Specific Text to Your Lightroom Slideshows

Add Titles, Captions and Other Photo-Specific Text to Your Lightroom Slideshows

In previous posts this past week I have explained how to add beginning and ending title slides to your Lightroom slide show, and how to add section title slides.  In this post I will explain how to add photo-specific titles and other information to your photo slides.

To add titles (or captions), you first have to type them into your photo’s metadata.  In the Library module, select your photo, then on the right side, scroll down to the Metadata panel and type in a Title, and hit Enter/Return.  Do this for each of the photos you plan to use in your slideshow.

entering a title in the metadata panel

In the Slideshow module, in the toolbar below the slide, click on the ABC button, and then change the drop-down to the right of it from Custom Text to Title.


You will now see the text box on your slide.  Click and drag inside of it to move it, and click and drag the corners to resize it.

As you move your text box, you will notice a white square that snaps to various locations on the slide.  This is the anchor.  You can move the anchor by clicking and dragging it.  If you anchor the text to the photo, the text will appear at a set distance from your photo, regardless of what size or shape the photo is.  If you anchor it to the edge of your slide, it will appear a set distance from the edge of the slide.  For photo titles, I generally want them to appear just below the photo, regardless of how tall the photo is, so I have moved the anchor to the base of the photo:


Because the anchor is attached to the photo, the title appears the same distance from the bottom of the photos in both these slides, even though they have different heights:



While the text box is active (i.e. while it has the box around it), you can change the font, color and opacity using the Text Overlays section of the Overlays panel on the right.  If the text isn’t active, click on it first to make it active.


Check the Text Overlays box.  To change the color, click on the color square to the right of Text Overlays.

To view how the titles look on more of your photos, you can Preview or Play the slideshow (bottom right), or you can hit the Previous/Next buttons in the toolbar below your slide to scroll through. 

You can add as many text fields to your slides as you want.  For example, below the title you could display your exposure information.  This is already in your photo’s metadata, so click again on the ABC button, and rather than Title, choose Exposure.  Place and size the box, as before.



2019-01-01T14:50:39+00:00December 11th, 2011|2 Comments


  1. David Riecks December 12, 2011 at 7:53 am


    It’s not that easy, but you can use fields other than “Title”. I mention this as many photographers, myself included, use the “Title” field to store a copy of the original file name (this makes it much easier to figure out what file a client or user is talking about after they have downloaded and changed the filename in their file/folder). Adding a “reference” is in line with the use of the field as defined by the IPTC.

    A better field to use, provided you are following the IPTC definitions is the “Headline” field.

    Here’s the definition for the Title field:
    “This field can include a shorthand reference for the image or “photograph” – primarily for identification. The title of an image should be a short, human-readable name – text and/or numeric reference – and may take several forms. For photographers, this might be the filename of their original scan or digital camera file. For news organizations it might be the name of a story it accompanies. The Title term should not be confused with the Headline term, which is a short synopsis of the photograph’s content.”

    Contrast this with the “Headline” field:
    “A headline is a brief, publishable synopsis or summary of the contents of the photograph. Like a news story’s lead, the Headline should grab attention and summarize the image’s content. Headlines must be succinct. Leave any supporting narrative for the Description field. Do not, however, confuse the Headline term with Title.”

    In terms of putting a short blurb under an image in a gallery or slide show, I think that the Headline is the better choice. Luckily, it is possible to do this with Lightroom. After clicking on the ABC button as you note above, use the pull down, and instead of “Title” choose “Edit” from the very bottom, and then in the IPTC Data section at the bottom of the Text Template Editor dialogue use one of those pull downs to select the “Headline” field. Then either save that as a new preset or default.

    Thanks for the tutorial.


  2. Dave Roberts June 13, 2013 at 8:41 am

    Help ! Somehow I have ended up with multiple copies of the date which I wanted under each picture.

    How can I remove them . If I turn text overlays off in the panel and add text again I have more than one copy of the date ?

    excellent tutorial as usual !!

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