Centralize your creative assets. Bridge CC gives you centralized access to all the files and assets you need for your creative projects. Organize personal and team assets, batch edit with ease, add watermarks, set centralized color preferences, and even upload your photos to Adobe Stock. Bridge simplifies your workflow and keeps you organized.
Adobe Bridge is a companion program for Photoshop. Bridge is often referred to as a digital asset manager, or a media manager. That’s because Adobe Bridge gives us powerful ways to find, manage and organize our ever-growing collection of images. In fact, Bridge isn’t limited to just photos, or just Photoshop. Bridge is actually a companion program for every app in the Adobe Creative Cloud (or the Creative Suite). We can use Bridge to manage not just images but also Adobe Illustrator files, InDesign files, videos, and more! Since we’re mainly interested in Photoshop, we’ll focus on how we can use Bridge with our photos.
At its most basic, Adobe Bridge is a file browser. Bridge is similar in many ways to the file browser you use with your computer’s operating system. As we’ve already seen, we can use Bridge to download our photos from our camera or memory card. But we can also use Bridge to find the images we’re looking for on our computer. Bridge lets us copy or move images from one folder to another. It can also copy or move entire folders from one location to another. With Bridge, we can create new folders, rename folders and images, and delete folders and images. Every basic function we can perform using our operating system’s file browser, we can do with Adobe Bridge.
If we can already do these things with our normal file browser, why bother learning how to do them in Bridge? The reason is simple. Bridge is not just a file browser. Adobe Bridge is a complete file management system. For starters, Bridge can display thumbnail previews of all the images in a folder. Sure, your operating system’s file browser can also display thumbnails. But the thumbnails in Bridge are fully customizable. We can adjust the size of the thumbnails in Bridge just by dragging a slider. Bridge can also display more information about an image (the file name, pixel dimensions, date created, copyright info, and more) below its thumbnail.
Also, Bridge lets us easily change the sort order of the images. We can order images by file name, file type, the date each file was created or modified, or by file size or dimensions. We can also order images by star rating (more on that later) or some other criteria. And we can manually change the sort order just by dragging the thumbnails around!
Along with changing the size of the thumbnails, Bridge gives us other ways to preview our images. The Preview panel in Bridge displays a larger preview of each image we select. And one of the best features of Bridge is the Full Screen Preview mode. It lets us instantly jump to a full screen view of any image for a closer look! The Review Mode in Bridge lets us sort through an entire range or series of images. This makes it easy to separate the keepers from the “others”. Review Mode lets us quickly cycle through image after image, keeping only the ones we like and dropping the rest!
I mentioned that one of the ways we can sort our images in Bridge is by star rating. Bridge lets us quickly apply ratings to our images using a one-to-five-star system. An image you absolutely love may get five stars, while another image that’s “okay but needs work” may get only one star. Other images that are beyond hope (hey, it happens to all of us) may get no stars at all. Or you can label an image as “Reject” if it’s so bad, it’s embarrassing. Along with star ratings, Adobe Bridge also lets us apply color labels to images. A yellow label can indicate images that still need work. Green can be used for ones that have already been approved. We choose the meaning of each color ourselves, so how you use them is completely up to you!