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By Tim Grey | Thursday, May 15, 2014

Why You Should Add Keywords and Metadata to Your Photos


One of the real advantages of digital photography over film photography is metadata. As soon as we capture a photograph digitally, we have a tremendous amount of information available about that photo. This information is generated automatically by the camera, so it relates primarily to the equipment and camera settings used to capture it.

For example, you can easily review which camera and lens were used, as well as the aperture, shutter speed, and ISO setting. These details can be helpful when evaluating images later or searching for a particular photo. They can even help you improve your photography by letting you identify the settings that worked best for a particular situation.

By Jess Stratton | Monday, January 6, 2014

Migrate data with ease using Excel spreadsheets: Monday Productivity Pointers

Matching header rows in your spreadsheets

Explore Monday Productivity Pointers at lynda.com.

Welcome to this week’s edition of Monday Productivity Pointers! This week I’m covering a great skill to know: how to migrate data between two apps with minimal headaches, by using an Excel spreadsheet. Hint: It’s all about the header column labels.

In the first video, I’ll show you how to make sure you’re correctly matching up the header row of column labels on your Excel spreadsheet for a smooth data import. And just in case you don’t know the column labels in the app you’ll be importing your data into, I’ll show you a great trick for finding out.

By Jim Heid | Friday, June 7, 2013

The Practicing Photographer: iPad Field Workflow

When you think of using an iPad as a photo accessory on the road, chances are you think of using it in place of a laptop computer—for example, to store photos transferred from your camera’s memory card, and to edit photos using apps like Snapseed from Google.

Those are indeed popular tasks for iPad toting photographers. But the iPad isn’t actually an ideal tool for them, particularly if you shoot using your camera’s raw mode. Raw-format images deliver better quality and provide more editing flexibility than their JPEG counterparts, but they utterly inhale storage space—it’s easy to fill up an iPad with the results of an afternoon’s shooting. Then there’s performance. No iPad can crunch through raw-format images as well as a laptop can, and most iOS photo apps can’t work with raw-format images at all.

But there’s another way to put an iPad to work on the road: to assign metadata to photos, such as ratings, keywords, and even geotags that record where you took each shot. This is a great way to put an iPad to work in field: cull your best shots and do some essential housekeeping, but save the photo-enhancement tasks for a real computer.

This workflow is the subject of this week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer. Ben Long demonstrates a $4.99 app called PhotosInfoPro, which lets you perform those essential chores, and then export the results as a series of XMP metadata files that programs like Adobe Lightroom can read.

The Practicing Photographer: iPad Field Workflow

The process is straightforward. Use the Apple Camera Connection Kit to transfer photos to your iPad, but don’t delete the originals from the memory card. Next, use PhotosInfoPro to add ratings, keywords, locations, and other details while they’re still fresh in your head. Finally, email XMP files to yourself using PhotosInfoPro (or stash them on Dropbox or an FTP server). Then delete the photos from your iPad to free up space. You can work through a large photo shoot in less time than it takes to watch a rerun of L.A. Law on your motel room’s TV set—and it’s one less thing you’ll have to do when you get home.

There’s a secondary message to this week’s installment: Take the time to assign metadata to your photos, whether you do this in the field on your iPad or back at your desk with your favorite imaging software. It’s an unglamorous but important task that will make your photos easier to organize and find. You’ll find details on assigning keywords and other metadata in many lynda.com courses on Lightroom, Aperture, Bridge, and iPhoto. For an overview of the process, check out Derrick Story’s Organizing and Archiving Digital Photos.

Interested in more?

• Start a 7-day free trial at lynda.com • The Practicing Photographerseries at lynda.com • Ben Long’s courses at lynda.com • All Photography courses at lynda.com

Adobe and Lightroom are registered trademarks of Adobe Systems Incorporated in the United States and/or countries. Aperture, Apple, iPad, and iPhoto are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. Dropbox is a trademark of Dropbox, Inc. Google and Snapseed are registered trademarks of Google Inc.

By David Blatner | Thursday, May 30, 2013

InDesign Secrets: Adding and reading metadata for InDesign files

Metadata is data about your data—information about your images and documents, such as the creation date, file size, location tags, author, and much more. It’s common to work with metadata in programs like Adobe Photoshop or even Illustrator, but did you know that you can add metadata to your InDesign projects, too?

In this week’s InDesign Secrets, David Blatner shows you how to add file info to your documents. As David says, it’s like putting on a luggage tag before you check your baggage; you don’t have to add it, but it really comes in handy for identifying it later. Plus, metadata is searchable by Google and other text engines, which makes it great for SEO.

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