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Thread: Lightroom import problem

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Lightroom import problem

    Greetings,

    I am really puzzled by this. I have hirarchical folders yyyy/mm/dd and in there Files from different cameras, easily differenciated by keyword.

    For example, in 2008 Folder I have Olympus E1 as well as Olympus E3 files. So, when I imported E3 files, it utilised the aldready existing folders and wrote to it accordingly.

    Same counts for my Sony alpha.

    Now I import photos from disk, in this case phase one files, and LR starts a complete new 2009 Folder instead of writing them into the existing structure.

    What am I doing wrong here?

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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Yhere is a drop down on the import screen. Make sure it says "put into one folder". I have a whole bunch of messed up folders from this.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Awwww.... I did not see that.... <running to big mac to try.... >

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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    I am really puzzled by this. I have hirarchical folders yyyy/mm/dd and in there Files from different cameras, easily differenciated by keyword.
    ...
    For example, in 2008 Folder I have Olympus E1 as well as Olympus E3 files. So, when I imported E3 files, it utilised the aldready existing folders and wrote to it accordingly.

    Same counts for my Sony alpha.

    Now I import photos from disk, in this case phase one files, and LR starts a complete new 2009 Folder instead of writing them into the existing structure.

    What am I doing wrong here?
    Sounds like your new original files are located in a different place on your computer from the ones you imported previously, and are importing without telling Lightroom to move the files into folders contained by the existing 2008 and 2009 folders.

    Look carefully at what settings you are using in the Import dialog. When importing from disk, Lightroom allows you to
    - Import files in place ... don't move or copy anything.
    - Copy files to a new destination (under a parent directory by original folders or organized by date, or all in one folder) ... originals are left where they were already, a copy is made, so you end up with two copies of each.
    - Move files to a new destination (under a parent directory by original folders or organized by date, or all in one folder) ... originals are moved to the new location.

    Always remember: Lightroom does exactly what you tell it to do when you import files... You have to be careful to tell it what you want to do precisely.
    ;-)

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Ok, it is user error, no doubts.

    The file structure in my finder window differs from the one in my LR Folder structure. So I must have done something stupid to start with.

    I wonder, what would be a way to sync this now, or is that too late?

    The way I want to continue working, is that I export from C1 into a specific TEMP folder, then start LR and say import photos from disc and point to the folder, then move the pictures to new location, so the TEMP folder is clean again for the next import.

    Can you change the folder structure in the Finder, and then sync lightroom to the new structure?
    Last edited by Georg Baumann; 16th July 2009 at 00:16.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    getting closer I think.... I guess my best bet is to re organise folder structure in Finder, start a new main catalag, and use the add folder function in LR.

    Only one question remains, if I do that, the menu does not give me a backup option for my pictures anymore. Can this be done in another way from within LR or would I just manually copy the new structure to my LR Pictures backup drive?

    .... ok, this does not work by adding a folder, looks like the best option is to strat from scratch and use import from disk.
    Last edited by Georg Baumann; 16th July 2009 at 02:02.

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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    The file structure in my finder window differs from the one in my LR Folder structure. So I must have done something stupid to start with.
    LR tries to simplify the view of folders on disk by listing only the folders you have imported. If you want to see more of the directory tree those folder reside on, Control-click on one of them and select the command "Add Parent Folder". If the parent folder of a folder contains several, it will display them all in a more familiar hierarchical view like you get with the Finder's List view (Mac OS X of course).

    I wonder, what would be a way to sync this now, or is that too late?
    Once you have all the folder trees exhibited in the Folder pane as above, drag individual folders into the place in the tree where they belong.

    The way I want to continue working, is that I export from C1 into a specific TEMP folder, then start LR and say import photos from disc and point to the folder, then move the pictures to new location, so the TEMP folder is clean again for the next import.
    Set up your base tree ... say it is Photos/2009 ... and each time you import into LR, be sure that is listed in the topmost portion of the import dialog. Choose the option to move the files into one, new subfolder and name that whatever is appropriate, eg: 20090717-Silvano_Wedding. Now all the files from TEMP will be moved into Photos/2009/20090717-Silvano_Wedding.

    Next time you import, name another new folder, say 20090722-Tree_Study-Sierras ...
    Now your Photo folder looks like
    Photos/2009
    Photos/2009/20090717-Silvano_Wedding
    Photos/2009/20090722-Tree_Study-Sierras


    Can you change the folder structure in the Finder, and then sync lightroom to the new structure?
    Yes, but it can often take quite a bit of work. For simple reshuffling of a few folders, it's easier to do it inside Lightroom.

    ... getting closer I think.... I guess my best bet is to re organise folder structure in Finder, start a new main catalag, and use the add folder function in LR.
    If you haven't done much processing or metadata editing yet, this is an option. If, like me, you have thousands of files and directories to re-sort, it can be a bit of a pain.

    Only one question remains, if I do that, the menu does not give me a backup option for my pictures anymore. Can this be done in another way from within LR or would I just manually copy the new structure to my LR Pictures backup drive?
    I don't think you understand the basic premise in Lightroom yet. I wrote this up on another forum recently, it might give you insight

    Consider the original file respository as one thing and the Lightroom catalog which it has been imported into as another thing. Where they are on your system and on external drives is independent of one another, you manage these two things independently but in a coordinated way.*

    The Lightroom catalog file, .LRCAT, is enclosed by a folder.*Lightroom manages this folder and its contents, you only manage where the top level folder is on your system. It can be on any directly connected hard drive, internal or external, but not a networked volume. The .LRCAT file contains the information about where the original file repository is (the location of every file you've imported). Other files and subdirectories in this folder are previews, templates and presets if you've set the options to keep these things with individual catalogs, etc.

    You're in control of the original file repository. Structure the original file repository as a tree with a common root ... for example, a folder named "Photo", inside that folders named for year (2009, 2008, 2007, etc), inside each of those folder named for day (090101, 090102, etc). There are other ways to name and organize this folder tree, that's just an example. That folder tree can be on any file system volume, and you can have multiple copies of it for backup.*

    Your job in managing your Lightroom environment is to a) be sure that Lightroom is set to back up the Lightroom catalog folder tree on a regular basis to another volume, and b) have at least two copies of the original file repository on two different volumes and keep them synchronized with each other.*

    For a), I set Lightroom to back up the catalog every day and I point that backup at an external drive.

    For b), I consider one original file repository as the master, working copy: that's where I put the files as I move them from camera card to computer and import them into Lightroom. At the end of every import operation, I quit Lightroom and run synchronizing software (ChronoSync by Econ Technologies in my case) to copy the new files to the second copy of the original file repository. I do the same thing at the end of every working session to be sure that any other files created in that repository in the course of editing (like TIFF files created by doing an "Edit In Photoshop" operation) are also duplicated in the backup copy of the original file repository.*

    If you move the Lightroom catalog to another location on your computer, it doesn't matter as the catalog simply knows where the master original file repository is. If you move the master original file repository, or wish to switch to using the backup original file repository, all you have to do is right-click on the root folder of the original file repository in the Library Module "Folders" panel and choose the command to locate or find that folder.*

    That's the simple case of "all your originals in one original file repository". More complex organizations with multiple original file repositories ... say on multiple volumes, typically driven by available storage space constraints ... work similarly by considering each part of the repositories as just another independent folder tree to manage.*
    I am teaching a workshop on LR, "Lightroom: Starting In The Middle", specifically targeted to photographers who are just starting with Lightroom and who might already have a large body of work they've been working on with Photoshop. Topics like this will be covered in depth. The workshop will be held at The Media Center in Palo Alto, CA, dates are September 15-17, 7-10pm. Information and registration about The Media Center is available at http://www.midpenmedia.org. The LR workshop hasn't been listed on the website yet, but should be there next week. ... I'm also teaching a "Photoshop for Photographers" workshop there August 11-12-13. Feel free to contact me for more information. There are eight seats available for each of these workshops. :-)

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Thanks for that Godfrey!

    I chose a different way, I renamed the LR Pictures Folder to lr_pictures_old, because in there I had a mess that I created.

    Then I setup a directory structure manually in the finder, starting in the root, by naming it lr_pictures, afterwards imported everything using "import photos from disc" into that folder and chose to move them to the new location and organise by date.

    This way my LR folder and Finder are identical and I have no mess anymore in the future.

    Works a treat, if you know how!

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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    Thanks for that Godfrey!

    I chose a different way, I renamed the LR Pictures Folder to lr_pictures_old, because in there I had a mess that I created.

    Then I setup a directory structure manually in the finder, starting in the root, by naming it lr_pictures, afterwards imported everything using "import photos from disc" into that folder and chose to move them to the new location and organise by date.

    This way my LR folder and Finder are identical and I have no mess anymore in the future.

    Works a treat, if you know how!
    Glad to help, and I'm glad that you found that way of reorganizing/synchronizing your work. It's similar to how I've done it with various clients' work when confronted with chaos, but trying to explain how to do such things briefly and with confidence that the recipient will understand is often somewhat difficult when using email and forums to exchange notes.

    Yes, LR is very good at this stuff but you *must* know how it works to exploit it to best effect. "Power is a two-edged sword." :-)

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Totally agree! If you are used to SQL it is a breeze I suppose.

    I am still finding pictures....

    What puzzles me, I have TIFF files in user/pictures.

    Then again, you have no idea how much of a chaos this was here. Computer went 3 times into service, I had no consitsent structure, hence backups from backups from backups, and a bunch of folders.... Mega chaos!

    Getting there slowly. I intend to keep one big catalog for everything, and start using keywords extensively.

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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    What puzzles me, I have TIFF files in user/pictures.
    If you're bringing RAW files into C1 and exporting them for Lightroom from there, the outputs are generally TIFF or JPEG files.

    The only reason to do this, rather than importing the RAW files into Lightroom directly, is if you happen to prefer C1's rendering of RAW files. Can't convert from RAW in both, and C1 cannot export RAW files. (Even if it can export DNG format RAW files, the rendering instructions it might embed into them would be specific to C1 consumption, not Lightroom or Camera Raw.)

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Yup!

    I use C1 to render TIFF from my alpha900 and phase one. The Tiff is imported into LR.

    I changed all the default paths now and it should work from here on. Nice to see that I did not loose any shots. They were just all over the place.

    Next major step is keywording. But I take that a step at a time.

    You know the color code labeles in LR, red, yellow, green and so on? Me idiot was desperatly looking for the key for purple.... ... onyl to find later that there aint no key for it.... DOH!

    I applied this code, red=human, yellow=fauna, green=flora, blue=landscapes, purple=abstracts, architecture, misc.

    Then the stars, 1=just good enough, 2=potential stock, 3=tourist print, 4=fineart print, 5=portfolio

    Plus the keywords, and I should have a much easier life by strictly sticking to that structure.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Man.... I sit here since 6:00 AM... it is 1:25 AM again....

    Nearly there! Time for a night cap and a good night sleep. Still some to go, but I should be finished with the basics tomorrow. The rest is childsplay and consistency.

    I like LR more and more, amazing what I was able to achieve in a 20 hours marathon session. Couple of years work put into a structure, backup and archived in one go.

    Next big hurdle is to apply keywording, which has to make sense in a continuous way, no sense to just whack some in there, then again, no sense to make it overly complicated either.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Godfrey,

    btw. I think you hit the nail here with your workshop. I have a couple of books on lightroom and each is good in it's own way, while a lot is redundant writing, but this is the nature of such books.

    I might be wrong, but there is not a single book that adresses exactly this "starting in the middle", and I would think that this is an issue many of us face.

    If you already teach that somewhat special subject, I would suggest to think about writing and publishing the same in a book form. I would not be astonished to see this become a successful publication in deed!

    Best wishes
    Georg

    P.S. Do you happen to know how I can remove a wrongly applied single keyword to a select set of pictures?
    Last edited by Georg Baumann; 17th July 2009 at 03:26.

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    Re: Lightroom import problem

    Thanks for the encouragement. :-)

    if you have a bad or wrongly applied keyword on an arbitrary number of files, go to the Keyword List panel and find it there. As you hover over it on the right, you'll see an arrow appear. Click on that and all the files which use the keyword will appear in the Grid. Select all of them (or just the ones for which the keyword does not apply), then un-check the keyword. That removes it from all those files.

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