Reorganising your photos

In the future…

After years taking pictures, do realise the photos could add up to just so much. In my album, currently there’s about twelve thousand pictures, which at one time was over 20,000… Then, after years of procrastinating, I finally complete the daunting task of deleting (hopefully) all unwanted pictures.

When I take a picture, I mean to keep, store, archive, save it somewhere or somehow for what ever reasons, so that I can access it later perhaps for another reason. This may not apply to many people as it seems nobody care much for pictures storage nowadays as everything is in the “cloud” Take a picture with the smart phone, upload to the sky or share it for ‘likes’ and maybe forget about it. I however would sometime need to refer back to some photo for reference or information but often realised that searching for one photo among the thousand gets very frustrating.

2010 0ct
2011 nov

Favourite dumpsite

The problem is, when I dump them to, say, Facebook or Instagram, retrieving them for later view (which could be a few weeks, month or years later) is just a nightmare, almost impossible, as there is just too many. So basically, when ever uploading to social media, it is just that, share and forget. That’s one of the reason I’d only share certain images for fun.

Flickr might do the job and is better at organising, but when you’ve been at about 4000 pictures or 9 years (fist upload was in 2008)… well, it gets challenging too.

To catalog, record, timestamp, label, tagging, etc is kind of tedious when doing it online, not much freedom.

Fortunately I’m lucky to own Lightroom. Been using it for years and it has helped tremendously in organising my photos. I had used apple iPhoto as well together with LR but using two software to organise turns out to be another prickly situation later on. So I decided to merge all into LR.

Why now

How did I came to the decision, simply because LR got a better organising system. LR could time track, keyword, nested keyword, group, geotag, folder, date, label, sort by EXIF data, camera type, smartphone type, lens, file type. The combination so powerful and useful it is just so easy to relocate years or archives, and we haven’t even got into editing or touch-up abilities.

The point is, organising all into one system, procedure or software makes it a lot easier later on. Saves a lot of time and energy, when you have to look for that old photo later on.

The lesson.

This is just sharing my experience, dealing with a lot pictures. Keep organised from the beginning, label, tag, keyword whatever that deems necessary as soon as you can do it. I never miss labelling the folder by date and place or people name if it’s related to someone or adding the company name, events, objects, projects and tagging them in the EXIF data later on. Great for LR, EXIF data includes camera type, lens type are also added. That’s why combining various search filter simplify the hunt. Delete all broken unwanted and rejected. Use one method, software or process when archiving as it won’t get messy after the years go by.

The pictures are somewhat valuable, obviously the reason why you’d made it in the first place, and strangely it sometimes gets even more important later on. When you would want to reproduce or refer to it again later only to meet with the frustration of not being able to locate it, then you’d wondered why you had not catalogue everything properly in the first place.

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