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File Management Q&A

Lesson 3 from: Advanced Adobe Lightroom 5 Workflow

Jared Platt

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Lesson Info

3. File Management Q&A

Lesson Info

File Management Q&A

D m m artist would like to know can you explain your thoughts of having a different folder for each memory card instead of just throwing them all into one that's a good point I put a different folder for each memory card because if you if you do things the way I do and you're doing it really fast if I have multiple cameras that remark threes they might be naming things the same way and so I might have a cross name situation and if I ever hit across name situation if I'm dragging them all into the same folder and then I walk away to go have like dinner or whatever then my computer I think it's working for me and it stopped and it's got a question mark and saying hey there's across name situation what do you want me to do? And I'm nowhere net near and I come back two hours later thinking the job is done and it's not john dunne because he's been waiting for me to answer the question so it's just a void that all together in the end light room is going to clean it all up anyway so those twe...

nty six folders that we created will become nun once we're done once we've cleaned up everything at the very end which will do later on today you won't have those twenty six folders you will just have one folder called selects one folder called rejects so it's just that's the only thing I'm avoiding otherwise it would be perfectly fine to grab the photos plus it's easier for me to hit auction drag it is to dial down all the way down and find the photos and then highlight all the photos and then drag him over that takes like at least twenty more seconds than it does to just go drag yeah so cool andi photo wanderer would like to know when naming uh right when naming jobs with the date first how do you recommend naming a job that for shoot that last one or two or more days for like commercial shoes? I'll do it on the a start date okay, now if if there's something that lasts a month, then the naming goes two thousand fourteen old five zero zero okay, because that means it's the whole month it will put it at the beginning of the month, but it tells you by looking at the date that there is no actual day it's a you know, and if it was a year long project than it would be two thousand fourteen zero zero zero zero and that means it's the whole year so you just that just don't give it a day if you want it to be like spanning several months and I also have a personal camera that sometimes doesn't get downloaded for months because that, like the kids taking around and my wife uses it, I use it and so there'll be months of photos on it, and so I just plugged that card in and I give it a zero zero dates all say two thousand fourteen old four zero zero the day that I'm bringing it in so on the month that I brought it in that's when it registers as this is the date for the wedding are for the for the personal job, but I don't give it a specific date because that tells me that it's kind of a wandering fine it does, you know, doesn't actually have, you know, the sound. I put the name of the question asked after into the answer, it's a wandering fine? Yes, like that was quite impressive. Yes, so erin, she would like to know, do you rename your photo files? Not on the way in? I will rename them later, okay, so once we're once we've selected them all, then we'll rename and we want to do that afterwards, because if you rename them now and then you start deleting stuff, then there's gaps in the naming, and then your client always wants the gap, so if they see one and three, they want to write. It's just in their nature to wonder what that is that's really good advice so just name it afterwards so that you have if you have one hundred files left they should be named one through a hunt and the only way to do that accurately is to name them at the very end not at the very beginning. Perfect. Okay, I know I have two questions in the studio audience guys, I'm going to ask one more than I'm gonna turn it over to you because I have been waiting for this question because it's it's the most asked lay room question here a crate of live angela mcguire from las vegas would like to know do you have just one catalog that you initially import to or do you create new catalogues for importing that there's a brilliant and important question I have what's called a working catalog and so everything goes into one catalog so it comes in just a cz we've done and you can see that I have all of my jobs in one big catalogue there they are right there so there's all my jobs that I'm working on and then when I'm done each one of those jobs by right clicking it and exporting as a catalog will go out to the archive as their own catalog, so in the end they will end up as each catalogue each job will have its own catalogue but in the beginning, they come in tow one working catalog, and there are a lot of really important advantages to having one working catalog, and I'll actually list them off right now, the advantage to having one working catalog is number one light room learns from your activities. So for instance, every time I put in a keyword it's in this catalogue and the catalog is constantly growing on those keywords, and it knows, oh, every time he puts in child, he also puts in a boy, and every time he puts in boy, he also puts in play and every time. And so then, as I start typing in my key words that start suggesting these key words to me, if I'm creating a new catalogue, every single job, I never get that learning experience light room doesn't learn as much from me because the catalog itself is constantly learning and constantly becoming better and more efficient. The other reason is that if I on ly have one cat, every job has its own catalogue, then if I set something up down here in a public service or I do something specific inside of this catalog that's catalog specific, the next catalogue I make won't have that change, so I won't be constantly connected to my smugmug sight or I won't constantly be connected to facebook. Because I'm using different catalogs every time, and I have to keep setting that up. Now we'll show you how to create a template up front for those that want to do a one catalog per job situation will show you how to make a template up front that will then allow for that connectivity to happen, but in the end, it still won't be learning from what you're doing. So I prefer the working catalog method if I could do it, some people can't andi have different so those people then so people who travel a lot or people who have a studio with three different people working those of the people that are more likely to use a one catalog per job situation, and in that case, we just have to mitigate the the damage that's done from not having a working catalogue by creating a catalogue template that they constantly use. But you have to really pay attention to setting it up first before you run into that situation so that you're you're not wasting your time constantly reconnecting the stuff that you wanted connected cool, awesome, and you make a a, uh, collection of every job. Oh, do I use the collections for every job, huh? No, I just used the collections or best used for little tiny things like I want to make a block of this or I want to do, you know, things like that are best used for the collection's a lot of people utilize collections too heavily for, like, basic organization. They ought to be using the files for that. Okay, so I organized inside of my files themselves or folders in the shoulders, okay? And then the collections are for special things, like, I'm gonna make slide show out of these or I'm going to make whatever out of those things that air, they're kind of, uh, not necessarily hard, fast things, you know, hard, fast things should be like, what images that I selected which image this diner did I reject you organize those inside of the folder itself? Great. Okay, guys probably want to start this keeping your light room catalog like this lean and mean as opposed to, like, saving a full year in the catalogue before you offloaded, does that actually make light room faster, much faster and that's why we want to archive stuff? I mean, if light room could just keep growing and never get slower, fine, you could keep everything indefinitely, but you can't. And so what we do is we bring things in and then when they're done, they leave, and so if you look at the schematic that I was showing just a minute ago you can see that things come into the catalogue here so they go into the working dr they get put on the working drive and then we import them into the working catalogue as we just did and then we run through all the things that we need to do to the images and with the very end when we're done, those get exported out to the archive here they get tested to make sure that there are good coffee and then everything here goes away. We delete it from the job of the working dr we deleted from the light room catalogue the working catalog because it's all inside of the archive and we'll show you that process, but we've done the import right now everybody saw the import. We simply copy the images to the card into the job folder and then we imported thatjob folder into the work and catalogue and now we're going to go through the whole process it's now on import we actually built these one for one previews that was done so now we have to go through these other things like adjusting capture time, selecting images, organizing keywords, adjusting images or reorganizing images renaming image is doing a little photo shop at it, then exporting some images to the client may be exporting a proof book making an album design removing the rejects is part of that whole process and then in the end we're going to convert them all to dmg or at least send out ex mp data on them. Andi will show you that process and then we're going to export the catalog as well and the catalog will actually go to the same folder remember when I showed you these like this uh when I showed you the job there's inside of the job there's a catalogue itself so inside of a job there is a catalogue when we're done with the job we send the catalogue to the job so that that folder no matter where it goes has the original files and it has the catalog so now it can set off on the archive and no matter what computer opens it it can see everything that was done and it will open it up as though we never left it so that's why we have that in our work flows to export that to the catalogue and when we do export that to the catalog then it becomes its own archives self contained unit that can be accessed from anywhere and then were of course at the same time sending images out the client through j peg I'm exporting on putting them up on, you know, smugmug or wherever I'm putting him on dh I am also sending a copy of my favorites to my portfolio as either d n gs, if they're raw auras, psd their tips to the actual portfolio, right? And, of course, these rejects got see how they got removed and thrown into our a little trash heap down here on that little that little rejects drive. Ok, ok, last question. So going back to your folder naming, like, if you gotta shoot, that goes on for more than one day, so I don't shoot wedding, so I'm showing stock mostly, so if so, for instance, let's say, I'm shooting textures so it's, more like the focus of what I've been shooting rather than a ah date. Okay, so let's, say, for instance, beach stock. So I've got a siri's I've been shooting a shoot in a certain beach, I get a collection, and then I realized a week later up you missed this for that beach, so would you. The problem is that there's there, often similar, so on, and I want them to be in the same basic collection. So how would you suggest having a folder system set up like that when the focus is this set of types of stock, not given deep ryan there's, there's two methodologies on that one is to always, if if I'm shooting beat shots textures put him all in beach texture folders and every time I come in but the problem is is that if you follow that mentality you're coming in with a card that has beach and textures but also there was a sailboat and you nailed it you got this sailboat photo well now you just put all the photos from that beach experience into textures and the sailboat is not a textures so then it's in the wrong place anyway so instead you're better off just shooting based on the date you shot so that it is a job and then use the collections to define what you know these air textures these air boat shots these air see shots plus if you do that because you can have smart kal ei actions that can look for key words you don't actually have to drag them into those collections and we can talk about smart collections in a little while but the smart collection would allow it to search for keywords so then as you type in texture it automatically adds it to that I think you're better off doing virtual type collections for your your process of organizing don't worry about trying to collect them into specific folders because that's that's an old mentality of thinking just put them in the dates that you shot them so it's very easy for you to be like I know I was there in october and you can go there and find stuff because you know that that's the date you were there you could look at your calendar and see that you were there but the key words is where it's absolute krill if your key word incorrectly you not to worry about what folded put them in because now it's intelligently grabbing them based on your key words so even if you have removed them to the archive and then later you want to go into smart collections because you got smart previews you'll see them well, I think that's a better question for tomorrow so let's talk about that tomorrow but yeah, as long as they're d ngs and have keywords, you confined them from anywhere how you find them is kind of a big discussion but yeah, and someone had asked is jared ever wrong? You know, I I have a lot of duplicates of files, right? I'm working to a raid system that's duplicating the file and then I'm swapping out that drive and I don't think that we actually showed you that processes well, maybe we should have but the idea is that uh when you have a raid system it's the the purpose of the raid system is tio duplicate the files as as quickly as possible and so when you're upset gotta get the right one so when you are on the road or even in your studio your raid system is such that you have uh I'll just show it to this camera here so your raid system has a drive in the top that's your main drive and then the right drive in the bottom is your secondary drive and so everything's being duplicated to that so once this gets copied to their you simply pull this out and then you always have three drives that you cycle through now you don't need three drives to cycle through an archive dr you just need an archive and a copy of it that's all you need but for your current working stuff you have to be very very careful because remember with current working stuff we haven't put it on the cloud yet so it's not safe so we want to be ultra ultra safe with the stuff we're working on so we have three drives and they call him a cycling drive so this is the cycle drive this is dr number three goes in to replace dr number two and as soon as you do that drive one copies down to drive to drive three drive to then khun go home with you this stays at the studio and this goes home with you and then when you come back to the office the next day you work on this it changes the files on drive one so drive three gets updated and then that night before you leave you pull this drive out, you stick drive to in and now this stuff gets copied to drive two and this one goes home with you so you always have two copies there attached to the computer and one copy that's not, but they're all the same. So it's it's absolute file security in a way that's understandable. A lot of people have drove bows and, you know, big raid fives and beyond raids and all that kind of stuff. The problem is, is that all of that s office still in the same box? So if someone comes in and steal the box, you still are out of luck. But with this system, you always have a third copy that somewhere else. And so even if it's in the same place but it's in a fireproof safe that's hidden somewhere that no one's gonna find somewhere that it's not with this because this looks attractive to steal this in a little fireproof safe hidden behind the closet. However it's not gonna be stolen on dso your question was, um, I ever wrong? Um, well, I once had it was about to because I constantly tell people I've never, ever, ever, ever, ever lost the file just haven't and it's because I'm paranoid and I and I do stuff like this but I'm very religious about it and so I have copies everywhere and if I think I don't have a copy then I make a coffee right now even if I I think maybe I have two copies I'll make a second copy over here and then go test it just to make sure so I ever lose a file well, a couple months ago a client called man said, hey, we're re running an ad and you designed the adforce because I'd taken the pictures and they said, would you pull up that pdf or that in design document and replace some of the text and re send it to us because we just want to re run it? And I said, yeah, that's fine and so I went to the place where the photos were and I found the photo just find the photo on the ad no ad couldn't find the indesign document anywhere and I was freaking out because I just done a workshop where I told people I never, ever, ever lose files I haven't ever left lost lost a file and I was I spent two hours because I was going to call the client and say, hey, I've lost this, you know? So I said I'm looking in a searching and I can't find it and I'm pulling up old drives on searching for what I think the text might be in a and I'm going nuts. And then finally, I think, wait a second, I don't lose files, so I emailed the client and I thought, well, worst case scenario, if they'll send me the pdf that they sent originally, I can recreate it because it's not like I lost the photo, I just lost the design, so I said, can you send me the pdf off the of the advertisement? She said, sure, so she e mailed it to me, and when she said it to me, I went, oh, I didn't design that I designed one the year before, but not that year they had outsourced that, and so I went, oh, that's easy. So I just wrote her an email and said, I can't send you that because I didn't create that you're gonna have to go to the person who created it, but here's the photo just in case you don't have that, here is the photo, so I delivered a photo back to him and said, go to the person that made the indus I document and so it turns out that when I think I'm wrong, I'm actually wrong about being wrong.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Essentials Preset Collection
Outsource Pack
SnackPack Preset Collection
Making a Sync Box
Presets Made on CreativeLive
Working Files - Images
Course Schedule
Great Deals
ShootDotEdit Catalog Template

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

Jared is the best. Really, his class was absolutely awesome. He can teach you everything with an ease and you will not want to leave your computer untill you see the whole class. I am so happy I purchased this class, it was the best investment! Than you Jared for such a brilliant classes you bring to us.

a Creativelive Student

It takes a lot of devotion to spend so many hours in front of the computer but I found myself not able to leave the monitor. Thank you Jared Platt and Creative Live for providing this quality education and information. We also get the bonus of seeing beautiful images during the sessions. Jared is a wonderfully clear teacher. His extensive experience both behind the camera and in processing digital photography is so very evident in all that he covers in his seminars. I'm looking forward to the next time.


I believe that this man has saved my life, or at the very least returned my life me. So many wonderful tips and time savers. I had never realized how much time I wasted at the computer for no good reason. He is funny, easy to listen too, and he explains in a way that can be understood. If you could only purchase one course, this is it! I attended WPPI and Jared's Platform Class and at the end I wanted more so thank you Creative Live for have him.

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