How do you cull/thin out old images

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by Original katomi, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. Original katomi

    Original katomi No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Ok how do you decide what old images to keep and what to bin.
    My method is to leave images on the archive for two years before deciding. Then if an image does not invoke a memory or a feeling then it goes, unless I have marked at the time do not delete.
    I have pics from when I first started with digital that by my current skills are cr.. poor but the bring back memories so they stay
    What do you do?


     
  2. Sharpshooterr

    Sharpshooterr TPF Noob!

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    It seems the older I get, the less nostalgic I am!!
    My first defense against having to many images is at the time I am about to take a pic.
    For example, A sunset....., I say WoW, what a sunset and my first inclination is to take a picture of it. Then I have to slap myself and realize it's just another sunset, just like all the rest, nothing special and don't take it!
    Same goes for half the landscapes, birds etc!! Or I can take it and waste HOURS later going through them and flushing it then!!!
    I erase 90% of what I take. No fancy process, just erase.
    Of course I'm not talking about pics that have a special significance like family, personal or historical significance etc.
    SS
     
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  3. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I just offload the older B- and C- grade shots, D- and F- grade shots were the few I deleted very soon after downloading them to the computer. I actually throw away VERY few pics..
     
  4. JonFZ300

    JonFZ300 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I don't throw away anything. Memory is cheap. I separate good files from bad but I don't trash anything.
     
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  5. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I use Adobe Bridge to review the files on my SD card. I like how fast the zoom function is using the space bar. The obvious bad shots get deleted immediately. Then I use the batch tool in Bridge to move the files from the card to a hard drove folder. From there I import with Lr using certain custom presets that I favor. Now comes the 2nd more critical culling process, those deemed to delete are flagged. Once I go through the batch, I sort/filter, flagged photos and delete them as a batch. Next is initial processing of the remaining photos, in Lr, I make virtual copies of the originals and apply edits to the first image, using Sync to apply the same edits across the board. Again I review and delete those I don't like. From here comes the final editing including going into Ps if necessary. When the final editing is done, I do one last review and delete if required.

    Where I have difficulty is on that final review when I might have multiple images that are almost identical. All are so close that its hard to pick just one. Usually at that point I find it helpful to come back after a few days/weeks/months and quickly review a file. Sometimes I delete, some more, sometimes I don't. I should add that if I'm shooting for someone else I don't delete any once I've sent them the proofs for review.

    I do housekeeping on my hard drive throughout the month reviewing old files, archiving to an external drive as required, doing backups, etc. Once they're off the hard drive they're safe from deletion.
     
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  6. Original katomi

    Original katomi No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Interesting how we all have our different ways. I store my working images on both the hard drive in a folder called darkroom, yep I am that old, as well as an external drive. When working on a project I save after each layer or change giving each save a letter a, b, c so on so I end up with a lot of the same or in stages. I liked smoke’s comment about when it gets hard to decided sometimes one pic is better in one aspect and not in another. I agree sometimes it’s better to leave it and come back later, this where my two year archive came from. Deleting in the heat of the moment then Wishing I had not. A few years a go I did a 40 by 12 inch mosaic with each pic about 1.5 inch sq each pic had its own layer. my poor laptop was panting then I did have to go and delete
     
  7. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Wow, at that rate I'd be maxing out my internal HD on every project! Is there a reason for that? I save my Ps files as psd's so my layers are intact. Adjustment layers are easily edited, but if I have a layer that I'm appling something not easily edited, I convert it to a smart object or smart filter.
     
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  8. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    An advantage of editing in a parametric editor like Lightroom..each variant in saved as a VERY SMALL instruction set to be applied to the raw data,detailing the corrections that were made to the raw data, as opposed to a 110-150 megabyte fairly large file (a large.JPG, usually, but perhaps a 16-bit .TIFF). I am familiar with the file storage issues around keeping lots of minor PS edited variants of files around.

    Perhaps one ought to consider the file storage requirements for Photoshopped data as a big reason so many photogs have switched from pixel-level editing, and over to parametric editing.Instead of 80,100,128,or 150 megabytes per editing,our storage overhead is less than 1 megabyte for 10 variations.. in other words,somewhere between 80 and 150 times more efficient, on a per-image basis.

    Of course, Photoshop is really good for making complex edits, and not everything can be done in Lightroom.
     
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  9. RVT1K

    RVT1K No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'm pretty cut-throat with my own stuff.

    What I typically do is take a group of related photos and make a folder for them, something like "birdfeeder 4_15_2019". Then I dump all the shots from the camera to my PC. My next step is the culling, I use a simple picture viewer and go through them one at a time deleting anything I don't like for whatever reason.

    The next step would be to edit anything that jumped out at me. Maybe I'll print it, maybe I'll just show people. It will also wind up in the folder that I use for my PC's desktop slideshow, kinda like a fancy digital picture frame.

    The final step is to copy things to an external hard drive.

    Considering how cheap storage is, I have not gone through all my old digital photos in quite a while.
     
  10. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Even better, is that those "editing instructions" are stored in the Lightroom Catalog. Lr doesn't give a hoot where the raw file is stored as long as it knows where to find it. I have an internal SSD that runs only those programs that require the extra speed (like Adobe & Windows) everything else runs off the internal disk HD. Some of the raw files are on it, some are on a network drive. I also have an external thunderbolt SSD that works as additional rapid storage if needed, and a scratch disk for Ps.
     
  11. dennybeall

    dennybeall No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Storage is so very, very cheap that after I've culled the rejects from the initial batch the remainder are kept. The screensaver on the laptop randomly selects photos in the Pictures folder and it's really kind of fun to see something pop up that was forgotten.
    I'm retired and no longer exhibit, so my photos are for my pleasure. I still have 3 - 3 TB and a couple of 1 TB drives around stacked up with the old smaller drives.
     
  12. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    3-and 4-terabyte disks are now pretty affordable. A lot of images can be stored on a 4-terabyte drive.
     

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