Photography Tutorials

How I Import, Edit and Organise My Photographs.


See my post processing workflow using Adobe Lightroom.

Your Photography workflow is something that is worth getting right from day one. It will help you to stay organised, work quickly, and easily reference an image again in the future. I have not always followed this advice in the past and it has been a time consuming and unhappy process correcting matters.

Adobe Lightroom now makes organising and editing your photos easier than ever. The catalogue system keeps everything together and allows you to edit in a non destructive manner. However, how you store and organise your files on your hard drives is entirely up to you.

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I find that it is best to organise jobs or shoots into year categories first and then something more descriptive as you go down a path level. For example, 2016>Weddings>John & Carrie or 2014>Landscapes>Scotland>Ben Nevis and so on. This could work for you or you might find an equally effective method but some form of categorisation is definitely required to stay organised.

At the beginning of the workflow I extract the images form the camera by removing the memory card and plugging it into a card reader. I find this a faster and much more reliable method than asking your camera to talk to your computer via a USB cable. I will also copy the files directly to my hard drive in the place I want to store them rather than using Lightroom’s import features. This is my own preference but I feel more control using this method.

Once the files are on the hard drive I will then import them into Lightroom by adding the folder to the catalogue. This opens the import window and you can add keywords, to assist your future searches, and add copyright information and change metadata.

The images them begin to load in and you can instantly start to view them. The next step is to grade the images deciding which ones are keepers and which can be discarded (although I never delete images altogether). I then go through a second grading to narrow down to the images I want to use and then edit. Once the images are edited they are ready to be exported and presented to the world.

The final stage of the workflow is to transfer the completed files to an external hard drive where they will live out their days in archive. This is done by dragging the folder containing the images within Lightroom. Doing it within Lightroom ensure both the Lightroom catalogue reference and the physical file are both moved. You are then left with space on your main HD for the next job.

Please make sure you back everything up too. Click the link below to see my back up solution.

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