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A guide describing how to use Tropy, a research photo management tool

Creating a Project

When you first install Tropy, you will be prompted to create a new project with a project name. A project is a collection of photographs, and it is best to think broadly when deciding what to name your project. For example, you should create a project for a writing-intensive class, rather than break up each writing assignment for that class into separate Tropy projects.

In addition to creating a project upon the first launch of Tropy, you are also able to create a new project by clicking on file > new > project

You can rename your project by right clicking the name of your project and selecting rename project

Keep in mind: 

  • You are only able to have one project open in Tropy at a time, and you cannot move photos from one project to another. Within a project, your material can be organized by lists, tags, and notes. 

Adding Photos

There are several options for you to import your photographs into Tropy. 

  • You can navgiate to file > import photos. You can select one photograph or multiple photographs. Then click open

  • Click the + sign in the menu bar above the item table in project view. 

  • From your computer's file system, navigate to the folder where your photographs are located. You can select one photographs or multiple photographs. Drag and drop the selected photographs into the middle pane of Tropy. Before you have any photographs added, it will say drop your photos into Tropy to get started in the middle pane. 

Keep in mind:

  • Tropy does not store any of your photographs (it is not a photo-storing platform); Tropy makes a thumbnail copy of them. The original photographs stay in their original location on your hard drive. 
  • Importing your photographs might take some time, especially if you are importing multiple photographs at once. 
  • If you store your photos from Apple's photo platforms, such as iPhoto or, you will not be able to drag and drop them into Tropy. You will have to first relocate them to a different place on your computer if you want to drag and drop. 
  • When importing photographs into Tropy, make sure the search box is clear. If the search box has text in it, it will look like your photographs are not importing.