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The Outdoor Photography Experience

Lesson 20 of 29

Organizing with Photo Mechanic

Chris Burkard

The Outdoor Photography Experience

Chris Burkard

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Lesson Info

20. Organizing with Photo Mechanic

Lesson Info

Organizing with Photo Mechanic

so basically I have my folder of images right here okay the very first thing I'm gonna do when my when my uh memory card goes in is I'm gonna open up photo mechanic photo mechanic is a program that's used for organizing raw files hasn't even used it nobody shame on you um so how many of you guys were using light room to ingest your images I don't know about that um light room is an amazing program but light room is not an organization program that's optimized for raw files when you load files in the light room they're physically loading into a program meaning it's you know cashing them it's making slack's putting them in there so that you could basically color correct and do all these things photo mechanic is purely an organization program meaning it views and moves through raw files like that fascinate anything there's nothing cash there's no editing you're not color correcting not doing that it's purely for selection purposes okay um as well as adding metadata and adding other things...

to it good so how does that compare to bridge bridge um bridges basically light room and a little bit of fun a mechanic mixed and right bridges an organization program you can also make color corrections basic color corrections right to it I don't prefer bridge I because I'm never because the thing is bridge is meant to be used in bridge and opening photo shop right so I'm not opening my images in photo shop go to ever really unless I'm making a massive large file so my memory card goes in right uh now I basically an opening I opened up photo mechanic on the very first thing I'm gonna do is I'm gonna go in to find a mechanic and we're going to ingest and ingest means that I am going to in just images from my memory card from this folder to wherever I want okay so I'm just select my primary destination which is my download folder ok open and my secondary destination which is my archive folder does that make sense right so now it's happening card is going in the images we're going in there being split off to two locations right um I can also add information in this file right so this might be um this is just basically I'm adding metadata to the to this initial selection I might go in and admitted that a later but do you guys know it matter that is too okay it's it's basically keywords and notes you can put in your file is also great for copyright and things like that you know if you if you want teo if you want to have stuff you khun search for if you want to have you know you're your name number phone number all these things added to an image you can add all that stuff here right you can get super crazy on this usually what I do is I just go in the first pass and ijust add okay so this is christmas card san capitalize it san francisco creative live um I don't know what else classroom er whatever you might want to put k you might put all these things in here you can just and then I usually just copy and I'll paste into keywords to write so um the beauty of this is that basically I'm adding some key words that I could search through these later right any most any program will let you search these key words even like the finder window I think we'll let you search these key words yes it automatically at old metadata to every file every file that I'm india's justin right now that's on that memory card is adding these images I could go back through individually once the images are organized and add more but right now I'm just adding a basic kind of over our king bit of metadata it's my files you know so I would be like you know outdoor photography experience anything that I might search through these images you know maybe there were photographs we shot earlier in the day okay uh so apply stationary selected it's already done so close stationery so by open my stationery it's all there close stationery so apply ptc stationary pad two photos basically I'm just applying all this information of the images yes okay cool now what do I want to do I want to um rename my images right why am I gonna rename my images so that their name correctly so that I don't have you know d c f for whatever one two four and I have thirty five copies on my computer you know back in the day about ten about six years ago I I had a good friend of mine I paid him to come out and he organized my entire library my entire system set me upon a backup system everything that wasn't cheap but it was the best thing I ever did and we started to use this system every time a memory card any time I use a camera taking picture it goes through this process and it has helped me to stay organized because every photograph has an individual and unique name okay so what I've done is I've gone through here and I've renamed ingested photos as I have my own structure so it's year month day my name and then a sequence right and just for this purpose I'm going to go through and reset the sequence because even if I reset it every single time it's gonna be fine you know because it's obviously a different day month year whatever so I'm resetting the sequence right now okay now I am going to ingest I need to pick injust a discs ingested folders I'm going tio add a folder that I want to in just what do I want two in just well I want to ingest um by this photo right here this's the folder I want in just creative life that's my memory card okay it doesn't matter what memory card is what folder is you could you could in just anything even if you have random photos with folders that could be j pegs that could be roz that could be any file you want okay this will still rename it at information and put it all together for you and easy to decipher category so um I'm just going to remove these right now so that there's no confusion um so here's my folder I'm doing and is there any questions as to this up to this stage um what I've done right I've added the folder and in just I've had my primary destination boom I've added my secondary destination whom now what I'm doing taking these photos I'm distributing them to these two drives with different names on each file with metadata on each file and a specific structure of the name right now in just so these are all getting renamed right go now this is done cool I'm gonna since I renamed since I renamed these I'm gonna close this program out and just open it back up because sometimes they have problems if you uh if you start re naming stuff outside of it and whatnot so um here we go download archive um all the photos are in here archive all the photos are in here now I just want to show you um so I have my folder creative life okay um these had a different name on them already okay and I put them into here and these air them now so all of these images in here the same exact images are in here ok so now you guys what what do I do well my archive is an archive it's never touched everything that I shoot I never tried to erase a single image on my camera ever if you do that especially while you're shooting you're setting yourself up to have potential card failures to have potential corruption and a lot of things can go wrong so any time I'm shooting images on assignment or anywhere I'm never erasing a single image it's what you end up paying to get those images back if something fails or breaks down is cheaper than a storage space memory and you know hard drives are so cheap nowadays you can get massive quantities of space for very little money so I I am basically cards going directly from my camera on these two drives my archive is never touched in fact nowthe shoots done shoots over I'm just going toe remove the archive from from here so I don't even have to deal with it this is always staying there untouched okay when I get home I am basically taking this dr I'm adding it to a bigger archive that might it's going to be say two thousand you know fifteen uh and then underneath it will be that this folder archive right and I haven't exactly duplicate of this for download but what do I do to the download this is where I start to work on the images so I start to organize the images so um now that I now that I have this I wantto kind of breakdown photo mechanic and how this is use this is why I used for the mechanic so everything is in here that I need right now they're all d angie's or raw files I'm just looking through them all right now okay cool awesome so I mean download card too click control I'm gonna rename this file tio creative live test and then inside here I'm going to start to make some folders and I'm going to say new folder inside this folder so I'm going to say and this is actually making full folders on this hard drive this is the beauty of it it's it's actually physically changing these things so what was my shoot let's say waterfalls um uh let's say aerials let's say um oops let's say uh whatever this arctic surfing so these air some categories if I was going to go through here and organize this shoot that I did the chute could be anywhere these might be some categories I would add it doesn't really matter if it's like hand foot face or um you know horses photos or whatever it is like your obviously you're usually going to be organizing your shots into some kind of specific folders or something you know maybe I got back from half dome or yosemite and I'm gonna say these are my night exposures one folder thes air these photos one folder thes air these photos one folder ok so now that I have my download folder and I know that everything safely backed up on the archive I can do whatever I want this I can start making selections I can start the leading photos it's fine because this the download folder is really where I'm pairing everything down okay so I'm just keeping it to the best stuff my archive will never change nothing I will never go in there remove our edit or delete a single photo it's always there just in case something happens or gets lost I always have that my download folder is where impairing things down putting them into folders organizing them and eventually color correcting them and saving them is deon geez okay um so I'm in here I mean this I mean this route folder let's go through I'm gonna ok cool so I'm looking through your there's arctic surfing there's an arctic surfing photo I'm gonna tag this by clicking control t see I just tagged it oh there's another I broke my own rule the first thing he always have to do is you need to untangle the image because a lot of times what happens off myself or somebody else will go through maybe they'll tag their favorite ones and pull them out and then you'll go through and you'll tag you're the ones you wanted a leap but what happens if you remove the tags you could you could ruin something so I'm just going to do control a select all and they control minus which takes away the tag so now I'm going to go through to make some selections for my uh for my folders oh there's an arctic surfing photo noticed there is an arctic surfing for there's one too there's one too there's one too great so I'm gonna take thes click control t move them into arctic surfing done uh waterfalls cool let's let's grab a cup of water fall photos one too um maybe that's it cool waterfalls boom okay let's grab some aerial shots one uh two three four great so those are my aerial shots right and if the rest of this was trash or if there was photos of blurry hands or you shot photo of your shoe or your camera shot a hundred shot sequence in your bag this might be the rest I might take these and just delete him in the trash and you're good to go because you're organizing your selections right aerials arctic surfing you know maybe this isn't maybe this is a trip to the arctic or there's a trip tyson or whatever this is a trip somewhere these air these are some of my my selections and folders from this card now one thing to keep in mind is that just because there's these three folders and that we shot one card I probably uploading like twenty more cards over the course of the trip those cards would get added into the archive they would just get added never organized never moved nothing okay the archive is in fact disconnected right so they would just get out of the archive and it would be on its own the download folder those extra cards that I might shoot would be added and then they would be continued to be organized I wouldn't make separate folders of aerials for each card I would just add them to a big batch so at the end of my trip I have everything I shot that was aerials everything I shot that was arctic surfing and everything I shall that was waterfalls ready to process everything everything making sense from from right now are those solid state drives we've had a couple questions about those they're my passport ares yes traditional but these air usually not what I'm using okay the hard thing is I've been so removed from like this process for so long but I usually have my assistants do it that when I'm travelling on my own and really minimal these are usually when I'm bringing just super small cause they faded in something tiny but when I'm on a bigger shoot we're usually bring a pretty uh bigger hard drives I mean that is really is backed up and has redundancy and stuff question yeah so I know that since you shoot video to how do you do you organize that differently the organ that phenomenon tickets well same exact thing it's a photo can isn't all you do is all you do is you click this press pressure space barn and play okay um so you guys understanding the purpose of photo mechanic right now what it's for I'm not going in here tweaking image them not color correcting about doing any of that what I've done is I've ingested my images I've renamed my images I've organized my images picked selects and I've moved them into here now another way to do this you guys is simply not before making all these folders you might just make two folders you might just make selects and non selects okay uh which is might be an easier way to think about it is I want to make sure that this isn't like you know you're not none of this is getting confusing or whatever so it might just be select you might go into here and like you know this one's too dark this one's to whatever this ones you know not sharp enough oh this one's cool I'm going to select that one uh this is kind of lame huh like that cool those are my two selects cool I'm pulling these into selects and then what you might do is you might change this folder once you're all done with it too you might change this route folder two non selects because everything that's left in here is kind of a crap you don't want but you don't throw it away yet but you know that it's not your favorite stuff so what I might do is go back through look at it once again before I trash it because it's in the non selects folder eventually everything is going to end up in one of these folder so you have selects the selects of ultimately get organized right and get put into some uh some into basically like the correct things okay so um so is this all kind of making sense because so the next step basically is for me to take these out of photo mechanic and trash all my non selects I've got everything correct I've got I've got my am I've got my uh my ariel is my arctic surfing my all this stuff and I got my memory card here the roof folder which um well rename just to be this is the kind of help but if it was going to sit on my hard drive this is that would be creative live maybe something like that um and then inside of me all these different things so um cool I'm all I'm all good their photos or ingested everything yes we've got some questions please this you ever use anything other than apple products basically mac books for anything I mean I wouldn't wantto go back to the eighties for any reason you know I think that I think that these programs could work great on pcs I've just always been a fan of of using um you know the fast equipment I can be I've actually owned a really good hacking tosh before which is basically like a hacked apple computer where it's just like a you're using their processing stuff but you're building it yourself right so I've used those air great um as far as all my car correction and stuff I've found that um thes systems like they just work really good for uh for these you know the creative purposes I feel like there's so many applications for great um you know color correction on screens as well as the program's always seem to come out for you know apple products first light room all these things kind of seem to be optimized in a way so yeah I've always kind of stuck to those and it just seemed to work really seamlessly for everything that we're doing you know do you edit on this or do you take it into your studio and edit on a mac pro I always prefer to edit on a on a on a proper screen anything on the laptop is not good this screen I can't even show it to you guys but it's glossy this screen is flat so the matte finish on the screen is a much more accurate accurate determination of what your image should look like write um glossy screens they reflect light if I go like this manage like stark's my girl like this manager exploiter it's really not a good thing to add it on we only do this on the road if I have to but typically I really prefer always to go back to the office and you hook it up to one of our computers and to work on it from there and even if that means you guys like well I don't have an office and I have this well just if you have a laptop maybe spend some money by like adele screen that's what we do we buy like the del you know like flat monitors not like this big but maybe something like that exactly right and we add it on those because it's a better interpretation right and you have a more controlled lighting situation there's also little things you can put on these in fact I have one for this laptop in there which is a little side views I couldn't go on here so we can really get a um better interpretations of light that's just the hardest thing is anything on the road with the laptop is really not an ideal scenario um you're never really gonna get is as good of as perfect or ideal of light as you are met on a controlled scenario do you always change your raw files to dan ji's I will I'm gonna go over why okay that's a good question I'm glad that was asked um do you can you import images from different cameras at the same time or should you just do one camera in time always one camera time I recommend um well I mean we do sometimes we'll have a drive that has to memory cards at once and we'll plug that in and well basically what we have is a splitter so right I'll have a have you know these things will be on a splitter right boom go to one source and then I'll have my firewire um card reader or usb three carve it or whatever and sometimes I'll do two cards at once yes so I guess they would be essentially two cameras two card from peter from cameras just fine they're just they're they're making separate folders on here so if this was my download folder inside you know the way this might look when you when you first opened it up it might be you know uh card too and then and then uh card three right and then what I might have in here is a folder that says selects um as well and then all of these might fall into selects right so this is kind of this is kind of usually how this how this goes right this this would be like if this was my route folder the two thousand fifteen creative life and then upsy and what I would have is um you're sorry it would look something like this so tell me fifteen creative life I'd have the first card ingested the second cardio ingested and then I'd have this the beginnings of a select folder and in my selects folder I would put some organization here now eventually this this and this is all gonna be away and all it's going to be when it's sitting at home my desktop or on my hard drive is going to tell him fifteen creative live aerials are going surfing waterfalls organized into just the images I want keep in mind the archive it's just gonna have card one card to card three card for nothing touched all in raw format no d angie's completely just as it is okay yeah so you've never broken up process pictures what's that you never bet kidnapping and put in cotton and copying processed for sure both the archive and the download have triple backups yeah waken touch based on that but in a lot of ways it kind of goes without saying you know like just make sure everything's backed up I like the three sources back up I have one that sits uh I used will be calls I'm like actually open up the internet going to show you on like I said you guys these are just products that I've found you use that worked the best but I use a pegasus um thirty two terabyte system this guy um I use one of these on what it is I just like because its expandable and it's a big like looks like a little tower and it sits on your thing I've used a bunch of my views that you know there's there's all kinds of brands you guys doesn't really matter what you get this is just what I have found to use but I have one of these sits by my photo editing computer the main one and this has archive and download folder in it so it's and you guys understand these archives and downloads that's like the archive is like gigs and digs and digs and digs and digs the download is like gigs and gigs because one is cut down it's all just the selects all the pared down the good stuff right here is all the juiciness of the drives the archive is just completely untouched everything if I deleted the folder and I need to go back or I get a client says we love this select but we need one variation can you go back in your archives and see where we're in there all the time looking right because I might make you know my thousand selects from the trip you know out of eighty thousand photos and I'd be like you know what we need a couple variations of this one that great well I have that because I didn't delete it so I love these have this what I do is they have individual drives that go inside boot poop right I take those drives out I put them in a safe in my office so I have one copy here one copy in my safe and then I have another copy off site that is like at my house or at a bank or wherever I want to put it you know it's a and my safe is a fireproof waterproof safe small one right this whole thing is not that big it's only about this tall yes nothing online if I started to upload photos online I would be dead before the time they would so cloud systems that makes no sense for me and I don't I mean if you're if you're using cloud you have probably very little images to work with I think that cloud seems make perfect sense if you're only uploading like your favorite one hundred thousand you know one hundred or a thousand photos whatever may be your that I use clouds a lot for low resolution images selections documents things like that by a whole office is set up on a cloud google drive is what we use when we love it's it's easy cause we're all on gmail as well but for uploading raw files to a cloud um you would just be spending I'd be spending lifetimes trying to wait for that stuff to upload and I've I've get that question a lot and I just think it doesn't make sense for this scenario you know but yeah because we get back from a shoot and we'll have you know easily almost always four terabytes you know of of stuff filled up or eight terabytes to make that so yeah when you're making with your mobile that's you sure through the club writes like if you have any of tenants around many images you understand yourself you use the cloud to send those always right you know more email yeah I mean that balance is important that's just second day yeah email works kind of great if if I have my guys my office I mean we're kind of in two different subjects don't keep on this really quick but I do use a cloud for like low resolution stuff I need them to send me a selection because they have great great apse for the clouds which I like

Class Description

Short on time? This class is available HERE as a Fast Class, exclusively for Creator Pass subscribers.

Shooting outdoor photography is a powerful way to commune with nature and experience the fullness of life. Learn how to train your eye on incredible shots and convey the energy of the outdoors in The Outdoor Photography Experience with Chris Burkard.

Chris’s beloved images of life on the world’s coasts are alive with action and emotion. In this class, he’ll share the tools and techniques he uses to capture the photographs he sells to magazines, brands, collectors, and publishers.

You’ll learn about his shooting style and the gear he brings on his global adventures. He’ll also talk about the business of photography and share tips on marketing and selling your work.

If you want insights on how to create rich, dramatic images that let you enjoy more time outdoors, don’t miss your chance to learn from Chris Burkard in The Outdoor Photography Experience.

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I've been staying up all night to watch the live broadcast. As somebody else here mentioned (latsok), it's emphasizes on the non-technical aspects (emotion, engagement, colour and composition) rather than the technical stuff like shutter speeds, iso and f-stop. Although I can use some help in both, the technical aspects are not only camera specific but fairly objective as well. The non-technical aspects however are something much harder to grasp. Getting help in this by no-one less than Chris Burkard is just amazing. I bought this class so I can re-watch certain parts of the broadcast again whenever I need it. But also to show my appreciation for Chris Burkard and Creative Live for providing this great online course!

Matt Redfern

This class was packed full of amazing knowledge. I really enjoyed the topics covered and have found it super helpful for my work. I have had so many takeaways ranging anywhere from how to put myself out there, finding my style that stands out, practical applications, etc. I would highly recommend this class to everyone interested in photography! Big thanks to Chris and CreativeLive for putting this together.


This was a phenomenal class. I highly recommend it to anyone. Chris is not only a sensational photographer, he is a wonderful teacher. He provides such detailed information and freely gives same to his students. He is really really available and eager to answer questions and so easy to understand. I learned so much and I was thrilled. I am very very grateful I found this particular class.