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Thread started 05 Apr 2014 (Saturday) 08:01
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ok, I finally admit it......I need help!

 
pixelbasher
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Apr 05, 2014 08:01 |  #1

I think this is the place to put this question, if not, could I ask a mod to move it to where it may be better suited.

Hi all. Short story long. For quite a while I have been happy mostly about how I store my photos.
Bit of a background on how I do it. Laugh if it sucks, but it's what I started doing purely because I had no other ideas at the time and it basically stuck with me.

I keep all my raws in folders of 1000 per folder, and named the folders as such numerically, so under a main folder called 50D raws I have sub folders called 0-1000, 1001-2000 etc etc. When I only had my 50D it was fine, then when I got to over 10K I simply added a new first digit to the filename, I.E IMG_12305. for example. I used a renamer to automate it quickly and that kept me from having duplicate filenames for different images.

When I process them I save them off as IMG_12305_xxxx.JPG "x" standing for the image size on it's longest size. If I knew I was going to print it I would do it suit the print size I wanted and label it IMG_12305_6_4.jpg for example for a 6*4 print. If someone said they wanted a shot of the blue plane for example, I said simply tell me the file name of the one they mean and I can trace it all the way back to the original raw if I needed to.

The first problem (one of them anyway) started to arise when I got a new camera. So I started a new folder structure but this time called 7D raw/0-1000 and so on as I took more and more, no different to the 50D structure. As I do a lot of similar type of stuff be it aircraft or RC planes and my kids I am finding that I am having conflicting filenames starting to appear for similar photos and it's starting to get a little confusing and frankly quite messy!

a second issue I have, is for some reason, my 7D decided one day to go back about 4000 actuations and so I have lost the original counter. Why it did this I have no idea but it definately did. Add to that, a bit (lot) of slackness on my behalf for a while in not renaming the files as I went, and now that I have gone well past 20K on the 7D I have multiple duplicate filenames just for this camera as well now as the ones from the 50D. In some cases I have the original filname, say IMG_4579 and another one which actually should be IMG_24579 AND as I had that funky counter rewind I have another IMG_4579 which is actually not as it didn't go back a block of a few thousand exactly, it went back by some crazy number like 3894 actuations. So I don't even know exactly what it is in the order of things.

I was thinking the first step is to plonk all my 7D RAWS into one folder then get a renamer to change the filenames and put them in chronological order to at least get them resembling some sort of organisation and at least get the 7D images back to some sort of organised state...... Problem with doing that of course is it will throw out the filenames of all the images I have already processed so I can't find my way back to the raw if needed...........ARRRG​H! And I still have the first problem of duplicate names from two cameras to contend with! :lol:

I use DPP and PS if that gives more insight. I understand lightroom is a good organiser but I don't have it. Also if it matters I don't use the 50D at all anymore, so it's only the 7D that is racking up more files.

I am interested to find out how others do all this and try and improve on my "system".....it can't get much worse! :oops:

Cheers


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Vetteography
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Apr 05, 2014 08:11 |  #2

You are a lot more organized than I am. My files are in folders based on date taken. The originals are in raw format, the edited files are in PSD or TIFF, unless they are for print, then the resized and modifed file is saved to a print folder by subject (for a project) or date (for personal prints). After they are printed, the folder gets moved to a DONE folder on an external drive.

I archive whenever I get around to it... all folders older than 60 days gets shuffled to an external.




  
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pixelbasher
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Apr 05, 2014 08:26 |  #3

You are a lot more organized than I am

Don't say that!

I'm not so bad with the backing up thing, I have 2 drives on the one PC, and every time I upload my shots (depends on how much I shoot) I copy the raws to the second drive as a mirror of the first "working copy" then also have an external drive which has another copy of all the raws......the bad thing of that is I have three copys of mess!!

I don't keep the Tiffs I output from DPP. Once I process them and make them into Jpgs of whatever sizes I need, the tiffs then get deleted simply because those suckers take 100MB a pop in a lot of cases.


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Hikin ­ Mike
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Apr 05, 2014 16:39 |  #4

All of my photos are by year. Inside of that I have two folders, one for 'Family' the other is for 'Nature'. Inside of that I have folders by location/event etc. Inside of those folders I rename my images by location/event, date, and number (yosemite-101212-02.CR2). I use Bridge to rename them. I carry the same file name when I process them into psd or jpg. I do keep the edits (psd), but been thinking about deleting them to save space.


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Mjolnir
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Apr 06, 2014 02:28 |  #5

I use Aperture to import the photos in date folders on the HD. Example: 2014/04/01-......

When im processing i import the photos i need into a aperture library.

Backing up is done on three HD's. Two are always attached to the computer, one gets swapped every week or so, and is kept in my safe. Everything is strored on my NAS as well.

Im a backup freak. I almost lost everything due to HD failure a few years back. Storage is cheap compared to a lost archive.

I used to use DPP to import. I believe you can set the import settings to make a different folder for every date, like i have now.

I never renamed my folders, i just put the processed photos in a named folder.


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Apr 06, 2014 04:44 |  #6

I just create a folder for each card copied onto my machine with a name based on year then month & date with a .001 suffix for first card copied, .002 for second one & so on.
e.g. 140406.001 and then if I'm feeling particularly helpful I'll add a description of the shoot.

I have hundreds of duplicate filenames, but so long as they each live in their own date folders, there isn't any worry. Hard drive then gets copied at 2am (file additions only, not deletions) to a second drive. Second hard drive gets swapped with a third drive I keep at work every few weeks.


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roodig
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Apr 06, 2014 09:12 |  #7

pixelbasher wrote in post #16811384 (external link)
I keep all my raws in folders of 1000 per folder, and named the folders as such numerically, so under a main folder called 50D raws I have sub folders called 0-1000, 1001-2000 etc etc. When I only had my 50D it was fine, then when I got to over 10K I simply added a new first digit to the filename, I.E IMG_12305. for example. I used a renamer to automate it quickly and that kept me from having duplicate filenames for different images.

I read this paragraph and my instant thought was "that would get confusing to search for an image". Also, unless your relocating later, you probably stop your import at 1000 and re-import 1001 for the next folder!

I'm not an LR expert, so I don't over think my structure. Basically it is:

  • Year
  • Name of Shoot
  • Date of Shoot (if it is revisited again). E.g. Motocross, i will shoot 7 separate dates this year for that particular track. So the sub folders will be Apr …, May …, June …, and so on.


From the example below. It works for me. As you can see, I shoot up to 10,000 per year and I don't have any trouble looking for an image if I'm asked to. If there are many people in the sub folders (like an event), I will keyword with their surname if I know it.

Processing for gallery display, I run a flag/delete pass, then an exposure pass on the flagged, then generate thumbnails for Photocart. After I load the thumbs into Photocart, I delete the thumb folder. If i get an order, I go back into LR and make adjustments, then send it to PS if i need to for extra work if required (cloning, tones, heal, etc). I "Save for Web" at Maximum and put in the order folder (e.g. Photocart Orders, 10,198 (Photocart starts its ordering system at 10,000 for some reason). After that folder is ready, I open up ProDPI and size/image select, place the order and the Full Size is uploaded into DPI. Once I receive the order at my house and proof the quality, I send them onto the customer and delete the Full Size folder on my desktop.

Sound confusing?

I will backup as well to other external devices. Once they are full, I will disconnect them and put store them away.


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Apr 06, 2014 17:47 |  #8

Year > Date of shoot
If a shoot is for a client or a particular event I will add that to the folder name in the format date - event.


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Apr 08, 2014 02:04 |  #9

My RAWs are all in one folder with subfolders by date such as this: 2014-04-08 Cats.
I have another folder called HI RES where I output tiffs and jpegs depending on whether I think I'll be editing heavily or not and they follow the exact same directory naming structure. If I have multiple edits of the same image I'll append the file name with an a, b, c, etc but leave the file number intact so I always know what and where the reference RAW file is if I need to go back to it. The actual file names/numbers are irrelevant as long as I can match the jpeg or tiff to the raw but since I always know what folder it's in, that's easy enough to do.
Then there are the snapshots of xmas presents being opened, etc. I export to jpeg into my pictures using the same folder hierarchy, but I'll delete all the raw files unless I have a few that are extraordinary that I may want to do something more with later.


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Apr 14, 2014 12:45 as a reply to  @ kfreels's post |  #10

I first sort by year. Under each year I have a "Personal," a "Professional", and a "Backup" folder. The backup folder is simply the RAW files organized by shooting date (I import from the camera into this folder). Inside the "Personal" and "Professional" folders, I have shooting date folders. Inside each shooting date folder, I have "RAW," "PS," "DNG," and "Deliverables" folders. I don't care about file names.

The hard drive is cloned nightly on another internal drive using "Create Synchronicity" (http://synchronicity.s​ourceforge.net/ (external link)) . My recent photo folders are backed up to an external harddrive on a nightly basis. When that drive is full, it is duplicated and one of the external drives is stored in my office while the other is stored in my house.

I also back up to CrashPlan's web storage (http://www.code42.com/​crashplan/ (external link)) on a nightly basis. Crashplan was recommended to me by a user on this forum. I pay a few bucks a month for the service.

I lost virtually all of my work when southern Alberta flooded last June, so I'm a bit paranoid now.


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Apr 14, 2014 16:56 as a reply to  @ neacail's post |  #11

All mine are on my desktop.... in random folders ..... i have like 50 "untitled export" folders.

Your miles ahead.


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Apr 14, 2014 18:54 |  #12

I use Lightroom 5 and have my photos sorted by year then date and subject. For example:

2014/2014-04-13 Point Pleasant Jetty
2014/2014-04-13 Point Pleasant Boardwalk

Within these, I might add individual images to collections. Adding to a collection doesn't move where the image file is saved, it just adds a pointer to the image in the assigned collection. All of the photos in the above folders are in my Jersey Shore collection. Then my daughter was in some of the photos, and those are also added to her collection. I can then search by any terms in the folder or catalog name. Lr also has keywords, but I'm not disciplined enough to use them.

I have four levels of backup. I use a program called "Crashplan" that performs continuous, automated backups and saves multiple versions, and can run multiple jobs to different storage devices/services. One Crashplan job backs-up to a NAS device in my home, the other to CrashPlan's cloud-based backup storage. My third level of backup is a script I run via the Windows Scheduler that copies all new and modified files to a USB HDD, and the fourth level is I burn DVD copies of the USB HDD at least once a year and put them in my safety deposit box.


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pixelbasher
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Apr 19, 2014 03:01 |  #13

Thanks for the feedback everyone, gives me some things to think about. I'm still trying to nut out a system that will work for me.


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Apr 19, 2014 07:23 |  #14

For many years, my system involved uploading memory card to 1 of 3 computers, burn a DVD, label the folder and disc and hope that I remember what was where. Then I went to external drives and then, I just bought more memory cards as needed and just let them build up in my drawer.

I recently got lightroom 5, mostly for its image management aspect. This might be a good time to consider some sort of DAM (digital asset management). I have spent the last several weeks uploading (including automatically renaming) and keywording (tagging) 20K photos and slowly its coming together into something that I would consider ideal.

Hopefully in a few months, I will have all my files in one location and most importantly to me, a way to be able to search and identify through all of my photos going back almost 12 years. In your case, it wouldnt matter what you name your files, you could search them by camera, lens, keyword, date, almost any criteria you would want, since LR looks into you EXIF data. I also use this ability to automatically rename all of the files as they are imported into LR. For example LK_20140314_6124.cr, which is basically, shooters initials_date of shot_original file number.

Since you use DPP and PS, I think LR would be able to fit right into you system. I spent over a month just figuring out the logistics of doing this, including a back up system, and for me it was time well spent.

If this is of interest, consider looking into DAM/LR on the web and the RAW forum here on POTN.


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Apr 19, 2014 16:19 |  #15

I'm always fascinated by the way people store and organize their images.

I seem to be in the minority, but I'll post my system tonight when I get home.


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ok, I finally admit it......I need help!
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