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Thread: Organizing your "keepers"

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    Workshop Member Wayne Fox's Avatar
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    Organizing your "keepers"

    My question is directed at the landscape shooters on the forum who tend to focus on creating fewer images but as high of quality is a possible, so perhaps not much volume (which I think many tech camera shooters fall into that category).

    I'm trying to organize my portfolio of images in preparations for opening a new gallery. Currently most images simply reside in their original folder along with all the images I chose not to use but also not delete, but I'm finding it might be better to move images into specific folders to create a hierarchy based on final images to be sold. Am I crazy?

    I use Lightroom, so I started moving the original raw file into a folder on it's own, which is in another folder that indicates the general subject. Each "finished" file is also key worded based on the size potential I plan on using (some older images just don't have enough detail to be large, other images have enough detail but really are best as accent prints, not really strong enough to be large). If the file was prepped in C1, after I move the original I have to move the corresponding phase files into the new folder, after which the C1 renderings seem to be intact.

    I then end up with a raw file, a work file which is usually a tiff file that may have been modified in LR/ACR, and then opened in PS as a smart object, and a rendered "master" file in each folder.

    This seemed to make sense when I first started it, but now I'm having second thoughts ... seems it may be much more work than I thought. Since I've only done it to a handful of images, I've put it on hold to evaluate if there are better options. Any thoughts appreciated.
    wayne
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    Senior Member malmac's Avatar
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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    Wayne

    I am grappling with the same problem.

    A thought to keep in mind is that if your were a landscape artist - the canvases would be stacked against the wall of your studio. At least this way the images can be huge but lots will fit on a 1TB drive.

    I don't know if you don't like to delete images, even if you are unlikely to ever use them - I keep way too much stuff and I am working on using the "delete" function to keep my drives less cluttered with useless padding.

    mal

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    Subscriber Member TRSmith's Avatar
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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    This is an interesting question and I'll be watching to see what others have to say.

    All I can offer at his point is something maybe tangentially related. After years of backing up and swapping drives and backing up the back ups, I have images spread all over the place in duplicate, triplicate (or worse). Comforting, but not very efficient.

    So I looked and found a neat utility called "Tidy Up" that will search for duplicate files, similar files, etc. You can search by EXIF Data, type of file, file name, and a ton of variations on all of those across any and all drives connected. Handy if you happen to be looking for files that have been misplaced too. Once you find the various copies in all their locations, it then becomes a matter of which to keep and which to toss.

    Best,
    Tim

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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    Wayne, Mal, & Tim: I bet there are lots of folks with these problems; all of the issues raised by each of you have been compounded in my instance because I have been making and processing images while inadequately learning numerous software packages. The result has often been mis-labeled images with settings that were from previous key words etc. Tim, I am going to check out "Tidy Up", but I am reluctant to infuse another software on top of those I am currently using with gaps in my knowlege. I am not sure Lightroom has the answers for me. I recently purchased Media Pro, but am months away from attempting to use it effectively. I hope others will contribute to this thread. Charles

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    Senior Member bradhusick's Avatar
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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    This is a good application for the "Collection Set" feature of Lightroom. Leave your files where they are on the hard drives and use Collection Sets and Smart Collections to organize your images. If you need to find their actual locations to make copies or backups that is just a right-click away in your Collection folders.
    Brad Husick

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    Subscriber Member Jorgen Udvang's Avatar
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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    I don't use LR, but organise my photos in the following way:

    - Each year has two folders, named yyyy-1 and yyyy-2
    - Each shoot gets a folder named after the following standard: yymmdd LocationEvent
    - In this folder, there's one folder for each camera, RAW files only
    - Photos that are edited for immediate or later use are located at the same level in the hierarchy in folders with names like "Alamy yymmdd", "Print yymmdd" etc. The edited files are mostly also keyworded (I run a batch keywording for all RAW files from one shoot first using Adobe Bridge, and add extra keywords for edited photos). Edited photos get a suffix that explains the purpose of the edit, like "ay" for Alamy or "pr" for print. Files that have been changed in size from the RAW format get a number that corresponds to the number of pixels, longest side, added to the suffix.

    I store the images on 2 x 2TB HDD that are backed up on a daily basis here and weekly for storage at a different location. I use Carbon Copy Cloner for backup. The local backup is automatic, while I have to initiate the weekly one manually. Since the HDD used to transport the data to the other location is only used for this, unchanged data will not be affected, so the backup will usually run very swiftly. The other location has a Mac setup similar to the one I have here.

    This way, I have full control, multiple backups and my photos are mostly searchable by keywords at two locations. Works very well.

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    Senior Member bradhusick's Avatar
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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    By the way, I have nearly 100,000 images in Lightroom - no problem.
    Brad Husick

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    Subscriber Member Jorgen Udvang's Avatar
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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    Which software one uses for the archiving is probably the least important. What is really significant is that one finds a file and name structure that is suitable for one's own mindset and practical needs... and multiple backups. And keywording. Keywording takes a bit of time, but is a great help when it comes to digging up forgotten photos. Backup disks should always be the same size as the original. Using older, smaller disks for that means that the routines become more complicated and easier to "forget". I always buy disks in pairs or triplets, and call them Photo1a, Photo1b and so on.

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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    I use all the softwares as needed, because most of my landscapes photos are from Canon [actually about 95%] so i first use Canon software [DPP] first to check and select my top best photos, then i go to Photoshop to edit [i can use lightroom, but i want to understand photoshop more so i don't want to use another softwares even easier features/performances], then if i want HDR then i use one of those HDR programs, at the end i will have ready photos to go to prints, those photos are in separate folder that i call it "Final Photo for Prints" or say "FPP", i don't want to follow many people methods of organizing photos because i can't decide on which one i should go, i am comfortable with DPP/Photoshop so i keep using those.
    Tareq

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    Re: Organizing your "keepers"

    Quote Originally Posted by bradhusick View Post
    This is a good application for the "Collection Set" feature of Lightroom. Leave your files where they are on the hard drives and use Collection Sets and Smart Collections to organize your images. If you need to find their actual locations to make copies or backups that is just a right-click away in your Collection folders.
    Yes!

    Keep your originals together and use Sets to organize.

    One of the treasures inherent in LR.


    Bob

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