The Capture One 23 Cull window is one of a whole series of new features in this version. It’s a new workspace for filtering out your best shots and ditching the rest.
Culling is a serious and long-winded job for sports, wildlife, event and portrait photographers – basically anyone who shoots burst or who captures multiple variations or angles on a subject.
What I always look for when culling is:
- Duds: images with obvious technical or compositional failings
- Duplicates: images which are essentially identical so I only need to keep one
I might try to pick out five-star images at the same time, but that does make the whole process longer and splits your attention.
There are ways of culling in Capture One already, but anything that makes culling easier has got to be a good thing, so let’s see how the new Cull window works.
This is just my initial idea about how I might use it. Others may work differently.
01 The Cull window
When you press the Cull button (towards the left end of the to menu bar), the Cull window opens. You can make it as large or as small as you like. On. the left side is a set of filtering tools and the main window shows all the thumbnails from your current folder or Album. This is a giant set of shots I gathered when testing a Sony A9 at 20fps – I only needed the single best image from each burst.
02 Group Overview
Here’s another set of shots with the A9 taken at a boxing gym. This time I’ve double-clicked a thumbnail to show a full size preview and start the culling process.
At the top of the filter panel, though, you’ll see something new – a Group Overview panel. Capture One attempts to group similar images for easier culling, using its own ’Similarity’ algorithms. I’ve tried changing the percentage, but the default value of 75% seems reliable enough. The grouping doesn’t have to be perfect – it’s just an aid.
Below this, the Filter options show or hide specific images for culling. What I’ve done here is select the ‘None’ Color Tag, so that I can hit ‘9’ for each image I don’t want to mark it red for deleting later and hide it at the same time. (There doesn’t seem to be direct ‘delete’ option in the Cull window).
04 Images and groups
Opening a full size preview has also launched two new vertical panels on the right. The one on the left with the smaller thumbnails shows the images in the currently selected group. The one on the right shows the groups created by Capture One.
You use the up/down arrow keys to move through the thumbnails in the current group, and the left/right arrow keys to move between groups.
05 Filtering keepers
The group I selected in the previous screenshot had a lot of images from a single burst, but here I’ve gone through them all, hitting ‘9’ to add a red tag and hide those I don’t want and I’ve quickly whittled this burst down to three ‘keeper’ shots.
06 Deleting the duds
I’ve finished culling and hit the Done button to return to the main Capture One window. I’ve also used the Search field on the top toolbar to select all the images I tagged with the red color label. I can now select them all and delete them. At the start, my gym shoot had nearly a thousand images of just a handful of subjects, but now I’ve got it down to a few dozen ‘keepers’ which I know are sharp and well composed.
Capture One 23 Cull tool: is it any good?
Yes, I really rate it! Culling is a difficult and tiresome job, but the new Cull window makes it much more painless than any other method I’ve tried.
Photo editor updates typically concentrate on show-stopping editing features, so it’s great to see Capture One improving the workflow too, which is just as important to professional photographers.
- How to cull images part 1: culling anxiety and how to get around it
- How to cull images part 2: duplicates, duds and the just plain dull
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