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Storing Your Photos

Lesson 1 from: How To Get and Stay Organized in Lightroom

Tim Grey

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Lesson Info

1. Storing Your Photos

Lesson Info

Storing Your Photos

So let's get organized in light room, so it's really interesting to me find a fair number of photographers, they struggle a little bit with light room, and I think I have identified the single problem that causes photographers to get a little bit confusing, like room that is, they just dive in and, like I was a little bit different from other software that you might be familiar with in that it's sort of all inclusive and all encompassing and it's really workflow driven, and it becomes, I think of it as command central for organizing, optimizing and sharing your photos. In short, when you start using like rooms manager images it's critical that you always start everything from my room, and I'm gonna take you through a basic workflow for working in light room. But first, more importantly, we'll take a step back when I touch light room, really, and we're just going to talk in general concepts course, all touch like from a little bit just to demonstrate some of these concepts. But the thin...

g to keep in mind, first and foremost when it comes to light room, is that light room is a catalogue driven, application like room is using a central database, as it were to keep track of your photos that does not mean that you don't have to keep your photos around. I've heard a couple of photographers who made the mistake of assuming once they brought their images in the light room, they could delete them off their hard drive because they were magically being stored somehow by light room, not the case, and so they're really just two pieces. It might seem a little complicated, I promise it's not as complicated as it might seem on the surface, it's just different from what a lot of photographers they're used to in terms of software. Those two pieces are the light room catalog that's the information about your photos essentially, and the other piece is your photos themselves so let's, just take a quick look at those two pieces in this case, this is just a quick little demo catalog. We're going to switch to a different catalog in just a moment, but I'm going to open up a finder view here or an explorer of you if you were on windows. Here are the photos in this catalog specific folder out on my hard drive so those in the photos I don't have to worry about those photos too much other than backing them up always every night, very carefully, but I don't have to think about the photos themselves because that's what like rooms, therefore it's managing everything for me. But I need to maintain an awareness that the photos are actually out there on my hard drive somewhere we'll talk about the specific location in just a moment and then we also have the actual light room catalog files something's going to go into the catalog settings don't worry about these particulars at the moment we'll talk about some of these options in just a moment, but now here we can take a look at the catalog files themselves there's the lr cat filed the leg room catalog file and the lr data file you don't need to worry about them other than again maintaining an awareness that they are actually out there we have our photos somewhere we have our catalog somewhere and light room works with both of those so that we can actually organize, optimize and share our photos so let's take a look at how like room actually works we're basically working with all these various modules today we're only going to focus our attention on really the library module, but we have the develop module for optimizing the map module for putting our photos on a map in terms of location. The book slideshow print and web module, which I just referred to is the sharing modules, but we're just going to focus on the library module to update the catalog and to therefore sort of update our photos in the background we'll talk about organization management folder structure all this sort of stuff as we go through the basics of getting organized and most importantly staying organized in light room so we've talked about storage location where I don't care anywhere you'd like anywhere that has enough capacity for all of your photos for me that means I cannot keep my photos on my laptop because I don't have a big enough hard drive on my laptop my light room catalog has just shy three hundred thousand photos all five star rated in my head but that takes up about four terabytes of storage space unfortunately little laptop those and let me have four terabytes of storage so that's not an option and so for me personally that means an external hard drive not actually this one this is my traveling hard drive that I used when I'm on the road because it's got this rubberized patting so when I drop it not if but when I drop it it will be relatively safe but at home I've got a four terabyte hard drive that's my master storage on the road I might have another location but really in my mind it is one location yes of course when I'm on the road I need to have storage I don't want to take my big four terabyte hard drive with me so all supplement with these other approaches when I'm traveling it's a little bit of a unique situation I suppose but at home one storage location that doesn't need to hard drives that doesn't in some photos on your internal hard drive and some on your external hard drive can you do that? Of course like room will let you do anything you want you can make a cluttered mess of your photos if you want to my recommendation is have all of your photos in one place so that you don't have to think about where your photos are if you've ever scanned slides remember the film days uh those were so much fun and then you have to scan all your slides and where you're going to store them and you need software to tell you which cd or dvd remember those two go pull off the shelf when you need a file I don't wanna have to think about any of that when it's where are my photos it's there on my hard drive the hard drive where I store all of my photos so one place we'll talk about the full their structure momentarily but let's first address the question of ok we've got our photos out on an external hard drive probably that is what works for me maybe you're primarily working in a studio environment with a desktop computer with big huge hard drive that can store all of your photos that's perfectly wonderful I don't have that type of situation because I'm away from home more than I'm at home so unusual using my laptop

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Tim Grey - How to Get and Stay Organized in Lightroom - Reference Guide.pdf

Ratings and Reviews

Michael Griffith

I've been using Lightroom for a number of years, but thought it might be helpful to review the program. Tim Grey does is an expert in the program and does a wonderful job of explaining the intricacies of the program. He uses a lot of self deprecating humor and his examples stick with you. The map feature is one LR tab I've never before used. Having updated some of the metadata tags, I can easily find my pictures of Costa Rica or Taos, NM. (plus its fun to see my travels plotted on a map)

Gary Hook

Tim has a great style and a wealth of knowledge. I appreciate that he not only talks about a technique, but takes the time to actually demonstrate the 'how' and the results. Although I've been using LR for some time, I came away with some great tips and insights in some areas such as using the Maps function as a search tool


I have discovered a new teacher I LOVE. I love the pace of Tim's teaching as well as his linear pratical advise. He stays on task as he teaches and is thorough. He even adds a little humor. This is a great to the point course!

Student Work