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Everything posted by Zigzagmtart

  1. Allan, I use the Lightroom plugin for all my Alamy uploads. Have done so for perhaps 3 maybe 4 years. I would not be without it. It allows a Lightroom workflow that meshes with what I am already doing. Note however that if your Lightroom keywords are a mess then the plugin is not going to help. I am meticulous about keeping my Lightroom keyword library in good shape so it works well for me. Best, John
  2. As far as I have ever been able to determine LR always uses alphabetical sorting for keywords. Using Jim Keir's plugin alters this somewhat if you allow it to prioritize but then you are using the sort order of the plugin. Adobe keeps making 'improvements' to LR but not much has changed with the keywording which for me is of a much higher priority than some other things. But unfortunately we stock shooters must be a small segment of the user population.
  3. As others have reported anything I have tagged with 'mural' has been flagged and marked as editorial by Alamy. I asked Alamy what the difference between 'editorial' and 'unreleased' was and the reply was: So it seems 'editorial' and 'unreleased' are essentially the same but perhaps 'editorial' is a little more emphatic? Anyway, curious how others mark their images with unreleased people or property? Should we go back and add 'editorial' to them all? Or am I overthinking this?
  4. I usually consider taking the photo to be about 10% of the work. Uploading, title, description, keywords is the rest. I fill out everything I can that applies.
  5. I never really pay much attention to my CTR but this post made me look. On the rolling 1 year screen on the dashboard my CTR is .46 which is about what I remember it being whenever I bothered to look before. However, if I click on My Images the screen there shows a CTR of .31 for the rolling 1 month. And looking at the chart on the dashboard my CTR has ranged from a high of .70 in August of 2017 to a low of .08 in November of 2017. It has since crawled back up to .31. I uploaded steadily in June and July of 2017 but health and work got in the way and I uploaded nothing from 31 July 2017 through 29 December 2017. Since then I have been uploading on a steady basis again. Just curious if I should be worried about the wide swings? Or the relationship (if any) between my CTR and my uploads?
  6. The good news about bad old images, is that the skills have improved so you know (now) that they are bad. It is always good to look at old work and compare to current skills just to see the improvement.
  7. Thanks! I have all my keywords already done in Lightroom, so using only 4 is not going to work unless I change my workflow. It does seem that the license can be changed after they clear QC, but I am still not clear on what happens if something goes live and is sold before I change the license. Oh well, that's never going to happen anyway so maybe best not to worry :):)
  8. Trying to come to grips with the new image manager. I have two pseudo's one for RF and one for RM. The default appears to be RF and the pseudo is correct for that. But when uploading via the image manager how do I change the psuedo and license if that batch is intended to be RM? It appears those can be changed after the fact, but the image is at that point already on sale, and I thought you could not change the license after the image was on sale? Maybe it is just that simple but I'm confused. Would anyone care to clarify please?
  9. If none of the sales are from "enhanced" then I do not understand what you are trying to say. Seems the non-enhanced ones are selling better? And by enhanced to you mean the "super tags"? If so there is a comment on the Alamy blog that alleges that using "Super tags" actually drops a particular image by many pages in the rank. No comment back from Alamy.
  10. You are correct and if the portfolio is too large for single drives then there is of course no choice. Lightroom really does not care, the preference for single drives is to make backup easier and to present a cleaner look in the folder view. But as you say, it is not necessary. Just preferred, IMHO, if it is possible. Mine are under a single directory on the server which has an 8tb raid array. Which appears as a single drive despite it being six physical drives. And, yes Martin Evening's book is excellent. Another one I have used is "Adobe Lightroom - the missing Manual" by Victoria Brampton. Completely different style but a nice 'quick tip' sort of reference. Adobe also has a lot of good videos on their site: http://blogs.adobe.com/jkost/lightroom-training-videos
  11. +100 on that. I love Lightroom and would not be without it, but it does take some work to set up. There are so many options in the preferences that it takes some real thought to get things the way you want. A few tips from hard won experience: 1) Organize your image library on disk first, before you even install Lightroom. All images should be under a single directory. Photos, Images, My Stuff, doesn't matter but all in one place. Note that Lightroom will accept any number of directories but if all images are in one place it greatly improves organization and also back up. All of mine are on a network server under a pictures share. Then everything is organized by year and then day. So even without Lightroom's catalog I still have a basic organization. 2) Once you install Lightroom you then just tell it to 'ADD' those images in place and your catalog gets built with that organization structure. 3) The LR import dialog can be confusing. It gives options for: Copy as DNG, Copy, Move and Add. The big difference is Move or Copy will pull your images from their current location and put them where you want within your data structure. Add leaves them in the same physical location but adds them to the catalog. Usually for memory cards you would use Copy. For your initial import you would use Add assuming everything is where you want. I never use Move and use Copy as DNG only for my Sony camera. The Pentax already shoots in DNG. 4) The key to LR is PRESETS. Once you figure out how to do something build a preset for that and you never have to figure it out again. For example my import preset: Copies the files from the SD card into the file structure on the server, applies a metadata preset with my name and copyright info, applies a develop preset that gets me 80% of the way done with processing, renames the files to my naming structure which is yyyy.mm.dd@hh.mm.ss.{camera#}, and makes a second copy on the local attached external hard drive for backup. 5) Note that in #4 the import preset applied a develop preset and a metadata preset. So nested presets, cool huh? Before that works, you need to build your develop preset and your import metadata preset so that when you build your import preset you can just assign the other two. 6) If your camera has GPS builtin use it, and then use the Map module in LR. Cannot tell you how many times I've looked at a picture I've taken with no idea what the name of the building is. But 60 seconds of checking using the map module and I have it located and named. 7) Lightroom will do automated backups if you tell it to. I do at every close. But it backs up only the catalog and it's data, NOT your pictures. You need to back those up separately. Your pictures are NOT in the LR catalog. The catalog is just an index that points to your pictures. But if your pictures are organized under a single directory then backup is easy. Hope that helps and good luck getting set up. Honestly, allocate yourself a solid week, get a good book on LR and do nothing but work on learning it and setting it up. If you try to do it piecemeal and do work at the same time you WILL get frustrated.
  12. Some might disagree but I cannot imagine doing any type of stock photography without using Lightoom. There is a learning curve, and the workflow is much different than a typical Photoshop workflow but IMHO it is well worth the time involved in setting it up and learning it.
  13. I sharpen to 25 in Lightroom. That is enough to overcome the RAW softness of my camera without overdoing it. It should be noted that a 'sharp' photograph has little to do with 'sharpening'. If it isn't 'sharp' as in "in focus" no amount of 'sharpening' is going to help. Sharpening is also a process and should have several stages. The initial sharpening, like my 25 in Lightroom, is to overcome the softness of the RAW file. After that you have creative sharpening which should be done with masks or other techniques to only emphasize what you want. And lastly there is output sharpening which is done only when the final size and output device is known. For Alamy we should do the initial sharpening if the camera we use requires it, not all do. And perhaps on a special image a bit of the creative, though I never do for Alamy. But output sharpening should always be done by the end user, as we have no idea what the image will be output to.
  14. If you need / use Photoshop then CC @ $9.99 or ($7.99 if you look around) is a very good deal. However, if you only use Lightroom then perhaps you are better with the standalone though accept the fact you will not get the latest and greatest toys. But considering the problems with the last few iterations maybe that is not such a good idea. I've got the CC version and the problems with the last couple of versions aside, I'm quite happy. They really, really need to stop adding features and fix the bugs and performance issues though. I've got a fairly high end system and version 6 brought things to a crawl. Last update has improved things, but still much slower than version 5.7
  15. I am thoroughly disgusted with myself. I guess I got careless. After 166 consecutive passed batches, I got a fail. That's what happens when you get overconfident and don't double check.
  16. 1) Editing (as in spotting, cropping, exposure etc) perhaps 3 - 5 minutes per image, but sometimes 20 minutes or longer, though I think these days it had better be a very special image to justify that much time. 2) Editing all images? Yes, anything that gets submitted anyway. Shoot in RAW and develop on the computer is my workflow. I know others shoot in jpeg and may need less processing but anything shot in RAW requires 'editing'. You need to check for dust spots even if you do nothing else. Very disappointing to have a wonderful image down checked for a silly dust spot I forgot to check for. 3) All photos? I think I read somewhere Alamy recommends 5 from a shoot. I do not remember where I read that though so it might be wrong. However, uploading a bunch of similars is wasting your time and will almost certainly hurt your CTR. If I cannot tell 2 images apart looking at a small thumbnail then they are similar and one gets the boot. I don't hold to the 5 image rule but I do try hard to make every shot unique. If I have portrait and horizontal shots I'll send both of those. And I do try to shoot both when I think of it. If I've shoot an area and there is enough subjects I might have 25 - 30 finished images from perhaps 500 that I took. The rest get deleted.
  17. I would think it be immediate if the distributor uses an API to access Alamy's database. If they are getting the images to host on their own servers then there might be no updates at all or perhaps Alamy pushes changes out at some interval.
  18. There are indeed many different ways of doing things, and I would never say that my way or anyone else's is better or worse, just different. First here is how I organize: Each day's shoot is in a separate folder that looks like this "2016-01-21" and each year is in it's own folder. So "2016/2016-01-21". And each file is renamed on upload to a unique file name. I use "2016.01.21@16.54.34.xxxx.dng" which is yyyy.mm.dd@hh.mm.ss.(camera file number).dng. Lightroom does the renaming and creation of folders as required, all I need do is click import. However, I have used this naming convention from well before Lightroom, I used a little program called "Stamp 2.8" (I think) at first before Lightroom. I am sure you have a system that works for you and that is fine. The only problem at this point is that it seems you have duplicate file names with your system. Second, the duplicate file names are IMHO a bad thing, but your system seems to work with that with no issues so up to now we are fine. The plugin however causes problems because it is looking through and trying to match file names in the Lightroom database to the names you uploaded to Alamy. So it seems to me you have to choose whether to change your naming system or not use the plugin. Certainly Alamy has their web based system of uploading and keywording and it works fine. Many, maybe most Alamy contributors use it. If I had 100k files that needed renamed I am not sure what I would do. The plugin is useful, but is it worth the time and effort of changing your system to allow it to work? I don't know. Third, if you do want to change your naming to be unique you should do that within Lightroom. If you select the files you want to rename, then click "Library<rename photo" in Lightroom it will bring up the rename dialog. Open that and select "edit.." or custom settings, not sure which. Then create a custom setting how you want your file names to be when done. I would suggest largely keeping the names as you are used to but include the date or some other method to make sure all results will be unique. Test this carefully on small batches of test files first. Once you are POSITIVE your rename works you could select "all photos" and let it run. I would probably run it in small batches even after testing but YMMV. Fourth, after you have renamed all your files you need to take that same custom rename you made and add it to your import dialog so going forward all newly ingested files have the same name format and are unique. I am not sure what other issues you found but be aware there are a lot of options and settings with this plugin. And to be honest the terminology and descriptions of those options are not always clear. So if you are having an issue describe it, it just might be a setting wrong, or something that does not work the way the description leads you to think it does. As to lack of support, you have a valid concern. I do not know Jim but I have used the plugin for a number of years. During that time I have had support tickets answered in minutes and long emails from him explaining things. I have also had support ticket waits of months and gave up thinking he had abandoned the project only to get an email with a fix. So support is haphazard and I do not know why. Putting your trust and a lot of time & work behind something when it might go away is worrisome. For me the benefit outweigh the concerns. I cannot answer that for you.
  19. Have to agree with Julie, the problem is not the plugin, it works as designed. My workflow is almost identical to what she described, the whole point being to never have any duplicate file names in the database. If the plugin does not work with your workflow and you are not interested in changing it then it is not for you. If you want to use it then you are going to need to make adjustments and only you can decide if doing that is worth it, to you. I honestly would not upload to Alamy without the plugin, it makes my workflow so much easier. But obviously it is not for everyone.
  20. If you are primarily a Photoshop user the Lightroom system often seems strange. It is a different paradigm. I think the way it was designed to be used was as a sort of central repository for images. Everything is imported into Lightroom, keyworded & titled there. Then sent out to various other programs for post processing and returned to Lightroom when finished. Of course it does not have to be used that way and I see many who are heavily invested in Photoshop prefer a different workflow. But Julie is correct, in order to have a Lightroom collection those images need to be in the catalog. As Julie suggests you can just create a new catalog for this purpose and delete when finished. Or point the Lightroom import dialog to your folder and 'Add' instead of 'Copy'. Make your collection and web gallery and when finished select the images in the folder panel and remove (not delete) them from the catalog.
  21. I got the 200 error as described, and the nan email from Jim about the updated version. Installed and I can now login. However, on uploads I now get a '500' error. Any suggestions on this error?
  22. You would have to email Alamy qc department for a true answer. My guess is they will look at what you sent and not worry that it is more than it should be. But that is just my guess.
  23. I think the cost would be prohibitive. And what happens if the QC service says a batch is fine and Alamy fails it anyway? Two different people looking at the same image = two different opinions.
  24. You can create a link to your portfolio, Alamy even provides the code. But no idea if you could get paid.
  25. Why would it not be? Alamy is not exclusive, you may place your images with other agencies or sell direct. Now if a publication called you and said they saw your image on Alamy but would buy from you direct if you charge them less then Alamy might be upset. Still would not be illegal but might violate the Alamy terms of service.
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