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Strategy for dealing with large numbers of shots

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I do an initial fast pass in LR and try to find the sharpest in a group of similars to delete the rest in my initial pass - -I'll flag for picks, x for deletes and use various colors and stars to rank them and separate out where I might want to upload them.  If I've been bracketing, however,  the sheer number to review can seem overwhelming.  I've been trying to upload in small batches by location - just drove out to the midwest and back from New York and have a ton to go through from three different cameras. 1600 in a hour sounds like pie in the sky to me I can't imagine even doing a fast first pass that quickly. 


I will take the occasional iPhone photo for GPS info. I used to take photos of flower names in public gardens, streets, signs etc on my iPhone but now find I'm better off taking them on my camera as it's really more efficient. I'll also use Notes on my iPhone to make any notes about a certain location, since I can then access the info from either my laptop or desktop. 


I usually pick my favorites, process them and upload them to POD sites, Alamy or other stock sites, or into collections for various calendar companies and other places where I send my images directly, then go back weeks, months or even years later to wade through the rest and see if there are others worth processing. 


I do major keywords when I first upload to LR  and then tweak them later on - but if I have a big group of similars that I'm uploading to alamy, POD sites etc, I'll also end up copying and pasting the keywords into a pages document so I can order them the way I want and keep that open while I "manage" the images on the various sites, since LR insists on ordering keywords alphabetically. I save all these keyword documents in iCloud since I work on my laptop a lot when I'm traveling but prefer to do major edits on my iMac when I'm home. 


For processing, I used to use NX2 and found that when I switched over to LR I could process much quicker. Now I sometimes use the Nik filters straight from LR and occasionally take a photograph into PS, but do about 90% straight in LR. 

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For a NIkon user ViewNX2 has a handy location map thingy to pin an area where a photograph was taken. I get confused sometimes when going through images taken a while ago, so it makes a handy reference where I was. Even if you just use it to mark one photo in a batch, it gives you a starting point.


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If you shoot RAW + jpg, finding the sharpest in a set of similars is easy: it's the largest jpg file if the image content remains the same.




Thanks! I didn't know that. I usually just shoot RAW but that's a good reason to shoot both. 

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OK, so return from a trip with anything between 0 and 7500 RAW images to process...


1. Copy from card all files onto mirrored hard drives

2. Separate into folders each of about 250-300 RAW images

3.Import them into Lightroom

4. In library mode look at each one full size, give it a red flag if I think OK for Alamy and a green flag if to be processed for personal use (the wife, etc :)   )

5. Go through the Red flagged files in Lightroom CC, and do the following for each one: Correct horizon if necessary with crop tool; tick the boxes for enable profile correction and correct chromatic aberration. if converging verticals, try the vertical correction tool to see if it helps. Then increase exposure if necessary, increase blacks if necessary and finally cut back the highlights if blown.

6. Import into Photoshop CC

7. Use the Curves tool to see if improves contrast/saturation/colour cast

8. Use the curves to to improve areas which are either too dark or too light

9. If necessary, open up Nik software to improve blue skies and green grass

10. Finally, spot away dust spots etc in PS and save to an upload folder, the upload to Alamy having gone through each one one more time to make sure not SoLD

11. On average 10-15 mins per image



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When travelling around a lot of different places in quick succession I use the file naming feature on my camera (Nikon). In Venice, I use the prefix VZ, then if I get on a train to Verona I change it to VE, Milan MI.

This is useful later when downloading images if they get mixed up out of order - no matter where and when you find an old file, you know where it was taken - at least in which town.

I also find I use - as a last resort - the 'time taken' stored in camera info. When I come across a forgotten, unidentifiable church interior, if I know it was taken two minutes after one in St Marks Square and ten minutes before the Academia bridge, I know it was somewhere in between.


I do take a laptop and try to get as much organizing, file-naming, captioning and general key-wording done in the evening - batch keywording hundreds of files with country, city, 'church', 'Europe' etc saves a lot of time later.

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I often use a real notebook and pen to make notes when picture taking. Modern technology can't do it all.


And then photograph the notes as soon as you've made them.  It keeps the timeline intact.



. . . you could of course just write the time and date on the notes . . .



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