Filing or Naming System?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Cooler_King, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. Cooler_King

    Cooler_King TPF Noob!

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    Right now I have over a 1000 photos (snapshots) mainly labelled like this

    DSC-1010Q2309U3

    or like this

    Day with the Dog 1
    Day with the Dog 2
    My Barbecue 1
    My Barbecue 2 etc etc

    Does anyone have an efficient and useful filing system? I am talking naming photographs and also the folder structure you use.

    I would really like to have the basics in place before I start shooting lots more images.
     
  2. FlickerLight

    FlickerLight TPF Noob!

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    I have different categories of folders. One for nature, one for architecture, one for events, etc. Events has a subfolder for the event name. Each folder also has a folder specifically for photos that have been through PP. I don't bother renaming my photos unless I am giving them to someone else. Using thumbnails that are built in the OS or Adobe Bridges pretty much eliminates that need for me.
     
  3. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    Developing and efficient file and folder naming scheme requires that you answers the question "why will I ever want to find the files again?" before doing anything else.

    Most of my images fall into two distinct groups. The two have rather different naming schemes, each appropriate to nature of the group.

    One group is my collection of family "documentary" images. These are sorted into folders labeled by date following the yyyyy-mm-dd format so that an alphanumeric sort is also a chronological sort. Withing these folders the filenames of the individual images begin with a serial number that starts with the date (yymmdd) that the image was added to the library (not date of image) with a unique two digit suffix. The two digit suffix is adequate since these are mostly scans of old film and prints I've never come close to adding more than 99 in one day. Most then has some description of who's in the image. This description often repeats in a large number of images so the begining serial number is necessary.

    My other photography is essentially artwork. The date of a particular image is irrelavent. Naming of folders is generally a reflection of subject matter and/or location (e.g. ...\Key West\Historic Buildings\Lighthouse\...). I have some images grouped into portfolios (my series of porches I call "Quiet Porches") is in its own folder tree).

    I do a little commercial work, here and there, and those images are sorted into folders by client and sub-folders by date.

    One thing I do with images I consider important and likely to be searched for is to fill in a number of the IPTC fields in the file, particularily KEYWORDS, DESCRIPTION, the various copyright fields, and data and location created. I can then find images by searching the folders by these fields using various tools that are available (Adobe's Bridge that comes with PS primarily).
     
  4. Cooler_King

    Cooler_King TPF Noob!

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    Brilliant. Thankyou both for getting back to me.

    Dwig I will def take elements of your organising ethic. YYYYMMDD is a good start.

    What do you do with photos that have been through PP?

    Keep the edit AND the original or just the edit?
     
  5. wtdeane

    wtdeane TPF Noob!

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    ….OR…….
    You could invest in Lightroom / Aperture / iPhoto.

    Some sort of Cataloguing software that you can apply keywords to for later searching and retrieval.

    If you are not using some sort of cataloguing software after 1,000+ images, you soon will be. Try them out. You will wonder why you didn't do it sooner.

    Have a very Merry Christmas.


    Cheers,
    Tyler
     

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