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In this course, photographer Derrick Story teaches the concepts and techniques behind efficient photo management and backup, which becomes increasingly important as a photo collection grows. The course begins by showing how to transfer and organize photos "by hand"—that is, by copying them from a memory card to a hard drive without using software. In the second portion of the course, discover how to take advantage of the photo-management features provided by programs such as Lightroom and Aperture, by assigning descriptive keywords, by giving photos ratings and color-coded labels, and how smart album features can automatically collect photos that meet certain criteria.
The course concludes with a look at aspects of a good backup and archival strategy, ranging from the best file format for long-term backup to the best hardware options for offline storage.
I'm going to import some photos into Lightroom, and this is great because I get to show you the advantages of using a digital asset manager. We're on a Windows machine, and I am going to click Import to begin this process. The first thing that Lightroom will do is it will look and see if I have a card reader or a camera attached, and I do, and that's represented up here. In the middle here, we look at what the action is going to be. Do we want to copy? Do we want to copy as a DNG? Now if you're concerned about proprietary RAW formats, we have RAW images here, and you want to protect yourself by converting to an open standard format, then you can choose Copy as DNG, and Lightroom will take care to that on the fly.
In fact, let's do that. We will copy them as DNG. And then the next thing is, where do you want them to go? Do want them to go into your Pictures folder on your computer, or somewhere else? I want somewhere else, you may want them in your folder. So I am going to choose Other Destination, I am going to scroll down here to Computer, and I'm going to go to MYBOOK, which is external drive we have hooked up. I am going to say Make New Folder, I am going to call it 2011 Lightroom Masters, and click OK.
All right; now we have a new destination here. Now, by the way, here at lynda. com, we have excellent Lightroom Essential Training. So if you really want to dig into this, and get into all the details, go over there and take a look at those movies. Now we have a few more details here. First thing we are going to look at is File Handling. How do you want your previews to be rendered? I recommend Standard; I like the Standard previews, because they're a nice big size, but they are not too big.
They take up a little bit more room in the library. If you're concerned about room, and you don't care so much about the larger size, you can go with Minimal. If you want really big ones, go with 1:1. Standard seems like a nice middle of the road approach. I almost always leave this box checked, Do not Import Suspected Duplicates, and that'll keep your Lightroom library from growing with shots that you already have. And you have the option to save a second copy to another external drive, and that's kind of fun if you have such a setup. We don't right now, so we're just going to go with the one copy, and I am going to close File Handling.
Now if I want, I can rename files on import, and we have a variety of templates here. And we could just go with Custom Name. The one that I like is Custom Name plus File Number; that retains the original file number, but allows me to add a custom name. In this case, I'll do Model, and you get an example of this. So here is you file number, your original file number, and there is the custom name. And we will close that up real quick. Apply During Import; do we want to apply any Develop Settings? I don't.
Metadata? I do, and especially keywords. I think during import is a great time to apply the basic keywords. So we'll do that; we'll do model, we'll do female, we'll do portrait, and then I like to do location. Just some basic keywords, but you'd be surprised that five or six keywords can help you find images when you have a library of thousands of images.
So a few keywords: very handy. Finally, Destination. Now, in the earlier movie I talked about creating your organizational system. I like using the same system whether I'm doing an asset manager, or using roll your own. So I am going to put them into a subfolder, and I am going to name that subfolder; the same convention that I've been using. And down here at the bottom you'll see an example.
So here is our Lightroom Masters, here is our subfolder, but you'll notice that we have these sub subfolders, which I don't want. So what I'm going to do is Into one folder. Look at that; we do Into one folder. Now we come back down here, and this is what I was shooting for. I have my Masters folder for the year, and then each subfolder will have my naming convention of month, year, and then just a little bit of information. And I think we're ready to go.
So now I just click the Import. Before I do that, I just want to mention that you do have the ability to create presets in Lightroom. So if you get something just the way that you want, and you want to save it so that you can be a little bit more efficient during import, right here is where you do that. I'll click the Import button, and import is in progress. Up here you have the status of what's going on, and part of the reason why import might feel a little bit slower is that we're converting to the DNG format, and importing at the same time, so a couple things are going on here.
It's rendering the previews right now, and it's going with standard previews, because that's what we asked for. And we are done, just like that. Let's just double-check our work. I am going to minimize here; we'll go our hard drive. Here is our Lightroom's Masters folder that we created. There is our model Shoot folder that we created. There are our master files in the DNG format, just like we asked it to do.
This is a very efficient way to add photos to your photo library.
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