Well I have not long returned from my holidays in Cumbria and, having taken nearly 400 images, I have been tied to the keyboard for what seems like an eternity! This leads me, very neatly, onto the subject of this post and that is Digital Work Flow.
It's all well and good being able to take as many digital images as we want but ultimately, there comes a time when we really need to do something with all those pictures! In the days of film it was pretty straight forward. In most cases we popped into our local camera shop or supermarket, handed over our rolls of film and in a couple of days, the pictures returned neatly packaged whereupon we either put a selection in an album or, certainly in my case, the package ended up in a cupboard, lost for ever!
This all changed with the advent of digital cameras and the memory card and I guess, like most, the thought never occurred to me as to what I was supposed to do once I had the pictures! It's alot easier now with the price of digital storage being so cheap but I needed to spend a considerable amount of time coming up with a way of storing, editing and archiving the images I had taken. It is even more important now I have this website. The following is how I approach dealing with the images once I have transfered them to my PC. For your information I shoot all my images in RAW format. I will go into the why's and wherefores and how I edit these images in another post.
Firstly I am quite ruthless with what I decide to keep or delete. If the picture is out of focus it is deleted without second thought because, and despite having numerous memory cards, a large hard drive and an even larger, external hard drive for storage, it is easy to end up with a huge amount of memory dedicated to images and I don't want to waste hard drive space with images that I don't think are any good.
I have a 1tb Seagate external hard drive on which I store all of my images, any new pictures are transferred to a suitably named folder. From this folder, I then make a selection of images that I think are worth publishing. For example when I got back from Cumbria I transferred and selected around 350 images that I wanted to keep and from those 350, I selected 65 for further use/publication. I make sure that all the images are stored in suitable folders and sub folders on my HDD.
Once all the images are stored in their respective folders and sub folders I find it very straight forward to locate specific images in the future and if I can do it, there really is no excuse for anyone else!
Once I have edited the images, I use Photoshop Elements 10 to archive all the images for easy access in the future.
This sounds straight forward and it is because I am crap at organising my images so I had to come up with something I could cope with! From bitter experience, I can assure you that I found no pleasure in trying to sort out 5000 plus images that I had just dumped onto a HDD, it took me weeks to sort through.
Take a tip from me and transfer your memory card contents to your chosen folder at the first available opportunity, you can always sort them at a later date but don't let them build up or you will end up with a mountain of images that, in all likelyhood, will never be looked at again!
I hope you found this article helpful. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions then please feel free to do so.
Until next time, stay safe.