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Software Your organization/PP workflow?

Discussion in 'Photography, Art & Design' started by Firehed, 16 Feb 2009.

  1. Firehed

    Firehed Why not? I own a domain to match.

    15 Feb 2004
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    Over the last few days I've been taking tons (~300 just last night) of pictures for a high school team that I help out, and while I use Lightroom for all of my organization and 90% of my post-processing, I'm curious what you lot do to manage your mountains of pics. More specifically, how do you tend to go about paring down your initial 2GB of RAWs down to a manageable number of half-decent shots, and then organize those?

    Here's my workflow. I find it a bit clumsy still, but my main goal right now is really just to separate the wheat from the chaff, as the expression goes, so I don't have to waste time trying to process hundreds or thousands of mediocre shots.

    1) Import into LR
    2) Add imported pics into LR collections, which are set up identically to how events would be used in iPhoto
    3) Go through collections and use the pick flag to find stuff that's interesting/decent/worthwhile
    4) Since the pick flags are specific to the current collection, I then take all of the Picked photos and either 1-star them (so they'll be picked up by a Smart Collection, 1-star-plus in the current collection) or just drag them into a "Picks, Round 1" collection in the set
    5) Depending how many #4 has in the set, I may go through for a second round of picks or just start any PP work from there

    I used to focus a lot more on keywords/tagging, but I find it to be way too slow and tedious to be really effective when dealing with hundreds of photos - to the point where it's not at all worth the effort. But that also depends what I was shooting, too. For the team events and that kind of stuff, the above workflow seems to be pretty efficient in terms of time spent per photo, but it doesn't really lend itself well to more general shooting.

    So, how do you do things? I'm hoping we can all learn a bit from each other and simplify our workflows.
  2. Vers

    Vers ...

    23 Oct 2007
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    In short:
    -Import and save to location file (Folder name = Date)
    -DPP for conversion (RAW-TIFF), levels/WB tweaks and sharpening (most of the time sharpening stays between 3-5)
    -PS for everything else (NR, curves, masking, TIFF-JPEG conversion etc etc)
    -Save as Copy in the same folder
    -Back up folder on external drive

    As far as RAW conversion I find DPP does the best job (Software created BY Canon FOR Canon)
  3. NzC

    NzC What's a Dremel?

    7 Sep 2003
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    Mine is really simple....maybe too much, but it works.

    I have a folder with all of my memory card dumps by date (any day I shoot I create a folder and put all of the picture there).

    I shoot raw + JPEG so I use windows thumbnail or filmstrip modes to browse thumbnails.

    Any image I want to examine or save I open in Camera Raw in Photoshop CS4. Almost all of my PP is done in here.

    I then have a folder organized into my main categories (dance, travel, portraits, etc) and I save JPEGs from RAW there with the original name so that I can always go back to the RAW.

    Really simple....
  4. whisperwolf

    whisperwolf What's a Dremel?

    1 Sep 2004
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    import from memory card to new folder in raw section of 1st drive with name "Date - location/topic".
    Browse though using picasa 3 photo viewer and delete all out of focus/ obviously rubbish shots.
    Open in Photoshop element 7 browse through folder again making note of pictures i want to develop (sometimes use the star rating other time a piece of paper).
    Use elements editor to convert from RAW and do any conversions tweaks etc.
    Save as PSD in set with original
    Save final pic as JPG in set with original
    Copy all final JPGs to picture folder on main drive and back up to network drive using same folder name as the RAW one.
  5. clumsy_culhane

    clumsy_culhane Minimodder

    4 Dec 2007
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    I import everything (I only shoot raw now) into a Shotdate folder, which then is then imported into lightroom and Most of the pp is done in LR. Then any bad shots are deleted, the good ones are tagged and maybe edited properly in photoshop. Back up (Lightroom catalog) once a week to a different hard drive.
  6. Jumeira_Johnny

    Jumeira_Johnny 16032 - High plains drifter

    13 Nov 2004
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    I have 2 different schemes for personal stuff and for work stuff.

    For work I have Aperture libraries set up by year, then individual jobs are labeled with job numbers and client short names. Images get uploaded to the jobs, getting renamed on the way to the proper jobnumber-client-image#. I turn on preview, so Aperture doesn't try to load the high res thumbnails and quickly cull the blurred, OOF, and general crap. Then go back and label "1" everything that I want to look at closer. Then I let Aperture load the thumbs and do it's thing. My side panel is set up in the order I edit, sharpen, straighten, crop, WB, etc. Once basic edits are there, often stamped, I label with a 2. The I go back and look at any more advanced work, like cloning, burning, noise. The finals get 4 stars, and exported. The final file usually has high res JPGs and low res JPGs for email. 16 bit TIFF as well, if I know they are going for print. Drop the CD, collect the check, go to the bank, pass Go.

    For personal work, I have a few libraries. One's Vacations, one is Personal work, etc. Those have the jobs labeled with a relevant title, and the imported images get the standard YYYMMDD - title - image #. Then I label and dump the culls. and then at my leisure work the images the same way I do the work stuff.

    With the right plug ins for Aperture, I rarely go into PS anymore. Just when I need to work on layers.

    Edit: and it's all sitting on a FW800 Drobo.
    Last edited: 17 Feb 2009
  7. Stig

    Stig What's a Dremel?

    21 Dec 2008
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    Personally I find it fastest to import them all into a folder for the current shoot/event, take them into LR, and then go through them. My first time through I either 1 star or 3 star everything. 1 star for stuff I don't like, 3 star for anything I'd like to take another look at. I think filter out everything below 3 stars leaving me with stuff that, at least at first glance, was OK. I then go through more carefully and 4/5 star stuff that I really like, and leave the rest at 3. I can then fairly easily find the best stuff, the pretty good stuff, and the stuff I thought was OK. Sometimes those 3 star shots have a nice piece in them that I'd like to use later for something, but the whole shot wasn't good enough to receive a higher rating. Having them at 3 stars allows me to keep them easily accessible, but separate from the stuff I really like.
  8. outlawaol

    outlawaol Geeked since 1982

    18 Jul 2007
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    I just started to dump bad shots right from the get go. Of course this can change as my subject/clientele needs.

    So here is my new work flow.
    • Download shots via zoombrowser (it sorts the whole card by dates taken)
    • Go through the whole set 1-3 times and use the star system to sort out the crap I dont want/need. And them dump the rest.
    • Open DPP (digital photo professional, canons app) and check for sharpness, may do some post if I am going to export them out of DPP with no other corrections.
    • Open in PS and do the RAW post to adjust anything needed.
    • Continue on to open in PS to do any other edits.
    • Save as TIF and export out as JPEG.

    Dumping the crap is saving me tons of space, I still keep a lot of shots but I cant reiterate how much easier it has been to just get rid of stuff. Sorting/saving it later is 10x faster/easier.


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