photo workflow

March 17, 2008

Since 2001, when I got my first digital camera until today, I have shot a lot of pictures. More than 30.000.

Now that I have my nikon d300 there are a couple of fundamental questions that I keep asking to myself:

  1. 1.-Should I shot RAW or JPEG.
    2.-How do I organize my 30.000 files.

1.-Well, I have always shot jpeg, simply because my previous cameras did not have the option to shoot RAW.
I have tried both formats and honestly I cannot see the difference. What I can see is that RAW takes much more space, that the camera takes longer to shoot it, that I can’t open the files with picasa, for instance and that it is not a friendly format (you have to install nikon software to allow windows to read NEF files), as it is specific for my camera. Who know if in 20 years time NEF files from nikon d300 will be supported? I’m pretty sure that jpeg will.
On the other hand, RAW keeps all data, and it is true that if you use photoshop you can improve the contrasts, colors and dark areas better. But honestly, how often do I open a photo in photoshop? I do most of the modifications with picasa… or now I will try lightroom….
I still have no answer for the first question. I guess that regular photos can be shot in jpeg and special ones in RAW.

2.-My workflow now is:

I shoot, I take it out of the camera to my computer. I save it in a folder:

         photos/raw/080317-photos of today

Then I process them in DxO, a great tool that I bought to correct the defects of my 18-200 nikor lens. I run it with the photos (around 200 for one day shooting) and I put them in:

          photos/DxO/080317-photos of today

Next step is to save both folders to my external backup disk.

Then I’m a bit lost. I would like to stack similar photos together (10 photos of a portrait and select the winner), add metadata, select the ones for the web, add ratings, and modify the winners with picasa, photoshop, lightroom or whatever. I don’t do that…. and if I would, where would I save the winners? In a different folder? That is hell a lot of space…

I have the feeling that it should be a better way.

I would love to read how you do it… please go ahead and comment. When you put the mouse on the article on the right appears the icon to add comments.

picasa bridge lightroom

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