NewChapter_Banner_TBOne of the things I love the most about Artisan software is the ability to organize content in a way that makes sense to me.   Content organization is very personal and there is no right or wrong way.   So in this blog, please be reminded that I am referring to the right way for ME.  I am not being judgmental of tags except in the way that it pertains to the way I would like to search for my content.  While I feel my way is the right way…it can be really wrong for you.  I am not trying to tell you how to organize your content.  I am simply giving you insight into my thought process and prompt you to think about your organizational structure.

Whenever I get new content for Artisan, I immediately organize it into Library folders.   My library folders are by designer, with the exception of my Creative Memories content. For years, the only content I purchased was Creative Memories content and I have A LOT of it.   My Creative Memories content was my go-to content at all times, even when we were introduced to new designers.  So when Creative Memories closed down, I decided to force myself to use content from other designers by removing 90% of my Creative Memories Content from my software.  I didn’t delete it.  The content is still on my computer’s hard drive.  I just made it so the software didn’t know it was there.  That being said, I still have 1,897 kits that are recognized in my software.

My content is also organized by categories.   I have a category structure that makes sense to me.   I love that I can put one kit in multiple categories without duplicating the kit.

The one area of organization that I refused to touch was the third level – Tags.  For a long time, content came pre-tagged.  As I said before, Content Management is very personal.   It doesn’t work if content is not organized in a way that make sense to the person using it.    Every time I attempted to organize my tags in a way that worked for me, I would purchase new content and that new content came pre-tagged.  Those tags were added back into the software and all of the work I did was for naught.   This is just one of the reasons I decided that tagging content was not the best use of my time.

My top reasons for not tagging: (keep in mind that these tags are useless to me and my personal content organization system, these same tags can prove to be very useful to someone else.)

  1. The useless tag:BlogOutofControl1_TB
  • Tags are supposed to be applied to individual elements; you are bound to have a lot of them.    I find that the tag “paper” is useless because the software automatically organizes/separates content in .pakits by papers, embellishments, shapes and more.
  • Tags such as “blue, green, red, light blue, light green, etc” are useless to me.   I don’t tag by color because the Tools in Artisan 5 allow me to change any element to any color I want it to be. I would prefer to tag by color family – pastel, jewel, primary, neutral.
  1. Misspellings.BlogOutofControl2_TB
  • The pre-defined tags that automatically import into the software can have several issues with them.  Many are spelled wrong or have added punctuation that can result in duplicating a tag.  For instance “#bows” and “bows”  would be two different tags, but are the same thing.  The plural for leaf is leaves, so when I tag I will look for content as “leaves” not “leafs”.  Unfortunately, there is clearly content that imported into the software tagged with typos such as “leafs” and “greem”.
  1. Duplicate tags.BlogOutofControl3_TB
  • Because tags are created by the designer of the content, and there are so many different designers available, they may each word a very useful tag differently resulting in multiple tags. In this image there are 2 different tags for heart, 4 different tags for multi (one is spelled wrong), and 4 different tags for frames.
  1. It makes no sense (to me). BlogOutofControl4_TB
  • Sometimes I just cannot figure out why a particular tag was applied to an element.  Here, all of these elements are tagged with hair and haircut.   I understand the tag being applied to the scissors, but don’t understand why they were applied to the photo corners.  Probably because they were part of a haircut kit.  If the element itself doesn’t pertain to the tag, I would not want it showing up when I select it.   I would have to remove those tags from the corners.

Here are some additional items tagged with “hair” that I cannot figure out why.  I will have to remove the tags from these elements as well.BlogOutofControl6_TB

I cannot figure out why the tag “inches” were applied to these border AND they were not tagged with “borders”.BlogOutofControl5_TB

  1. The Overzealous tag.
  • Technically all of these items are  correctly tagged with “heart”.   “Heart” would be a very common tag and if I tagged every element that featured a heart on it with the tag, the heart tag would become so overly populated that I would not be able to find anything in it.   I would remove the heart tag from items such as the raccoon, snowman, snails, rain clouds, rock on word art and popcorn.   The heart on these elements is secondary and not a main detail of the element.  I would not search for these elements in this manner, especially since the tools in Artisan software make it so easy to add or remove a heart from the design of an element.  The heart tag is perfect for the paper hearts, stamps, paperclips and sweet heart word art.


Why I think I will start tagging now.

I currently have 16,457 papers,   56,388 embellishments, 2,602 shapes and more content that are currently untagged.  I can’t begin to tell you how much content is tagged that I will need to retag (not to mention the pre-tagged Creative Memories content that I will eventually reintroduce into my content.  I recently found out that new content from the Forever store is no longer being tagged.  What this means for me is that I am able to add new content into my organizational system without any new tags being introduced into my system.  I will have a clean slate.  This is a monster task. It won’t happen overnight. But IF I commit to doing a little bit at a time, week by week, eventually I will have the perfect organization from library folders to tags. Perfect for me that is.

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34 Responses to Blog: Out of Control (A Tale of my Content Manager)

  1. Laura Barkman says:

    Tameka, do you organize Predesigned page kit with your other kits by designer or do you organize those in some other way?

  2. Susan Wenzel says:

    It has taken quite a while to get tagging to where I like it to be. At one point, I started from scratch so I untagged everything and retagged them in a way that works for me; very customized and the trick is to keep it up-to-date as best one can. However, I also like my content organized and I don’t really like uploading an Artisan commercial kit where the kit itself contains only a few items in total; is there a way to add these into Artisan without having to upload them as separate commercial kits? Thank you…..

  3. Elizabeth Flodell says:

    So I have finally getting around to organizing my content. Is there a fast way to remove all tags. So I can start fresh too many have the wrong tag
    Thanks for your help

  4. Karen Wilkinson says:

    Hi Tameka,
    I’m just starting into my content manager after gathering for a couple years a little at a time and I seem, to have duplicates and triplicates of art kits! Help please! I love this blog because I haven’t started tagging and I probably won’t now but would sure like to clean up the extras.

  5. Lisa Purrington says:

    I am trying so hard to get this under control. I took the kits I don’t use at all and moved them to another folder, completely out of the the folders that have all the Artisan kits and it is still showing up. Do I have them stored everywhere. All my kits are also showing up in the library under Commercial Kits and Creative Memories (that title is in it twice) — so the kits are listed 3 times! Help!


  6. Janna Federkeil says:

    So can you use multiple tags on an item? such as yellow AND flower?

  7. Jennifer Gilbert says:

    thank you for writing this – it somehow gave me permission to delete the nonsensical tags and now I feel much better about the tags I have left. Clean sweep of the colours and a few others. That has enabled me to fix current tags – the untagged will come in time. I am so glad I am not the only one who could not handle pretagging in CM days and it is good to know that practice has stopped! Thanks again

  8. Penny Andler says:

    Katie and Tameka–
    Removing (but not deleting) content from Artisan…is that as simple as moving the kit to a different folder in my hard drive?

    • Tameka says:

      Yes. If you move a kit from where Artisan knows where to find it, it will not show up in Artisan. Moving content to a different folder will accomplish this without deleting the content from your computer.

      • Penny Andler says:

        Terrific, thank you! I’m finding your tip so helpful–on naming folders of content with “theme” or “palette” before the name.

      • Dawn Beaulieu says:

        Hi Tameka, I have worked with 4 and now 5 for sometime but am really trying to organize my content. When I am in my Artisan 5 and tap on the library icon all my kits come up but most have two and three copies of the same package. Is that normal? Also when I open up my categories, in the icon ‘not in any category’ I see the same thing. In reading a lot of stuff I get the feeling that is not normal. I have looked in my documents where I keep all my packages and they are not duplicated.

        • Dawn Beaulieu says:

          Another question; if we have the library with folders and even subfolders, why would someone need the categories as well? Perhaps I am overthinking this and making it harder than it is. My own system all these years has been to use the library folders to organize my content.

          • Tameka says:

            Categories are not a requirement. They are optional and give you a way to organize your content so it is easier to find.. Kits can only belong in one library folder (without having multiple copies of the kit). That one kit, however, can belong to multiple categories. So I can have a kit called Pixie Fun and it can be saved in my pixels2Pages Library Folder. I can then put that one kit into several categories such as Party, Bright (as in Bright colors), and Vintage. Tags apply to the individual elements in a kit.

            If you haven’t already, you can check out a tour of my Content Manager to get a better idea.

        • Tameka says:

          That is not normal. It sounds like you have the kits installed multiple times. Go to the windows folder on your computer that holds all of your kits and delete all duplicates from there. That will remove the duplicate kits from your library folders and categories.

  9. Beverly Goodrich says:

    When I get really bored, I un-tag my former CM products. Some of those are crazy tags with the issues you pointed out. I like to use capitalized tags like: Leaves, Metal, Love. I often type the words when adding tags rather than scrolling up and down the list. So sometimes I introduce typos. The typos show up as all lower case so they are easy to find and delete.

    And yes, I will never, ever tag another flower, button, ribbon, etc. I only tag unique items in a kit such as a compass, or a clock, or a car, or a tool.

    • Tameka says:

      OMG… If I tagged all of my flowers, I would be tagging forever. lolol

    • Tameka says:

      I do, however, have a tag called “no tag”. Everything I don’t care if it is tagged gets tagged with that tag. I do it in big batches. My goal is to eventually have the items not tagged section empty. So everything in there now, needs review for either tagging, or being “no tag”ed. Same for categories. I have a category called IDK for I don’t know and don’t care if the kit is tagged. So everything in “content not in any category” are items that need review.

  10. I cannot tell you how relieved I am that even a Pixie is in the same boat I am with tagging content, not to mention the amount of content! I don’t feel so bad now! Thanks for your take on tagging, Tameka. I do really like the idea of tagging with all caps or in some other manner that will let me know what I tag and what was a tag that was automatically added to the content.

  11. Nanette Shipman says:

    It’s really good to hear your perspective on tagging. I know a lot of people use it very successfully. I have found it helpful for the more specific things I am looking for, but, like you, I was overwhelmed with all the pre-tagged items that didn’t make sense to me. Some things were tagged black even though there was only a black outline on something. It’s been overwhelming. I started a re-tagging process, but have never gotten all the way through it. And sometimes I find myself wanting to change something again, because it no longer seems to work for me. I do wish there was a magic wand and a sprinkling of fairy dust to just get the organizing all done and free me up to get more actual scrapbooking done!

  12. Terry Vachowski says:

    Thanks, Meka. I feel better about not having done much tagging yet. I know when I get to it, it will be all that much more useful.

  13. Dionne Merriott says:

    I have always enjoyed using tags and had some of the some problems as you did when I added new content. So I set up my tags so that my tags were in ALL CAPS. That way I could go though and delete new tags that were added into my system. In addition to the tag TITLES, I have

    Good luck with your tagging process!

  14. KatieK. says:

    Tameka – I smiled and nodded my head in agreement as I read your post. I too gave up on tagging for many same reasons. I have always wished for a Tag-Tidy-Upper Fairy Godmother. With a flick of the wand and a click of the magic keyboard – all the undesirable tags disappear! She sits on my shoulder taking care of all the new/old tags while I just do the fun stuff. I guess until she shows up, I will have to discipline myself to dedicating a few minutes or more each week to the job which is getting easier with Artisan 5 and all the great tips and techniques from you Pixies! Thanks for all you do! Katie

  15. Billie J says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. I am in the “slow” process of tagging and have been feeling overwhelmed. My numbers are not nearly as high as yours. But with your information and the recent Artisan Tips on Content, I feel more in control.

  16. Karen says:

    Loved reading this Tameka. Off to learn more about Content Management. I want to spend my time scrap booking NOT tagging. I managed fine from when I started digital scrap booking in 2007 until A4 without tags and find I really do not use them the way that most people do. I have deleted many of my old CM kits as I have found I was not longer using them. Something like my closet, if it has not been used in a year . . out it goes. I wish that we could delete items from a pakit like we can with personal art kits. Sometimes I purchase a kit for a half dozen items because I want something within that kit that is unusual but true looking. Love, love the fact that we can change the colour on anything. For me, I tend to think of tagging as a file cabinet. We are all different, thank goodness. Good luck with your tagging.

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