When I drag a folder into Apple Aperture the name of the folder becomes the name of a project that those photos are put in. Specifically, the metadata item is "Project path".

This information is important to me because the folders — and thus the projects — had good, descriptive names.

Now I want to move all my photos to Adobe Lightroom, and I would like to embed that metadata in the photo so it's present in Lightroom; maybe as a keyword or any field really. How can I accomplish this?


2 Answers 2


What you are trying to do is not really "metadata" in the EXIF or IPTC sense. Rather it is an attribute that the Apple Aperture library uses to manage files.

The issue is that this path is not part of the IPTC Core that it must be present in to be exported as part of the XMP sidecar. More details about the IPTC Core can be found here.

Your best bet is going to be the manual route, and would consist of adding the keywords you desire into the actual IPTC of each folder. Eg - Open up the folder "summer 2010" and add the keyword "summer 2010" to all of the images in that folder.

If you are doing this only one time per folder, I would assume that you don't have more then a few hundred folders, unless you create folders for very small batches of files, and it would not be too time consuming.

Make sure to correctly export the XMP sidecars before switching over, or you could end up with a mess!


The good news is that the path name is searchable in Lightroom, so if you do a find (Cmd+f on a Mac), you can just type in part or all of the path name and it will filter the files as you expect. It's not metadata in the "IPTC" sense of the term, but it is searchable.

Does this help?

  • \$\begingroup\$ When I import (move not add) the photos into Lightroom the path of the photo is the path into the Lightroom folder structure, the Aperture project path is lost. \$\endgroup\$
    – Chandler
    Oct 23, 2011 at 22:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ You should be adding, not moving. That's the key. Then the original structure is preserved. Unless, of course, you had all your images inside the Aperture catalog. In that case, I don't know the answer. \$\endgroup\$
    – Steve Ross
    Oct 24, 2011 at 17:10

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