Adobe Bridge Alternative Photo Organizer

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by baryon, Nov 12, 2010.

  1. baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    Hi everyone,

    I'm a photographer and I have tens of thousands of photographs. The way I classify them is the following:

    Each shoot has its separate folder, and within that are two folders: Originals and Retouched. Every photograph I consider finished is retouched in Photoshop, and therefore has a modified version in the Retouched folder.

    The reason this is important to say is because Aperture does not allow me to do this. Aperture insist on having one version of each image, and it replaces every original with its retouched version, and hides the original.

    I would like to use Events, which I love because it uses big icons to represent each "folder", but it seems that I cannot put two folders (Originals and Retouched) in an event, just one big flow of photos, mixing all the originals and modified version together.

    I retouch everything in Photoshop, even the smallest things such as cropping, so all the correction features of Lightroom and Aperture are useless to me.

    I love Adobe Bridge because it does not "Import" anything, it just views files in the folder structure I put them in. I can also have full screen previews by pressing Space, which is great. The only problems with Bridge are that it's very slow and it has a quite glitchy (and ugly) interface (that's Adobe...).

    So I'm looking for something that would do almost everything that Bridge does, but would be a more "native-to-the-Mac" interface, and would run much faster with less bloat, and no unnecessary functions (like Aperture). Also I hate libraries and I hate importing images, and if Bridge doesn't have to do that than I don't see why other applications should.

    Basically, here's what it would need to do:
    • Be a quick file browser oriented towards Photography
    • Versatile thumbnail views
    • Labels
    • Instant full screen previews
    • Drag & Drop to and from Finder and Applications
    • Must read all image file formats including RAW and PSDs

    Any suggestions?

  2. MonkeySee.... macrumors 68040


    Sep 24, 2010
    I'm a week away from getting my new shiney iMac and what you say concerns me as i also retouch pictures in PS and would like to keep the orginals in full view.

    Does this also happen with iPhoto??

    I'm currently using Picasa on my windows machine and it has served me very well over the years.

    I used adobe bridge for about a week but didn't get on with it and unfortunatly i can't remember why! :confused:
  3. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus


    Jul 24, 2002
    When I send an image from Aperture to Photoshop Aperture creates a new master and auto-stacks that with the original master. You can unstack them if you want which would get you what you want I think
  4. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    Have you actually tried Lightroom?

    Lightroom can manage edited and unedited versions of a file.

    Lightroom's integration to ACR and photoshop is really good.

    I don't understand why you would want to use Photoshop for cropping in preference to something like lightroom. Lightroom will store the cropping instructions in a few bytes - whereas if I take one of my 5DII RAW files and crop it in Photoshop, I end up with an extra 60MB file. Seems like a waste of space and energy.
  5. baryon thread starter macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    Yes I'm sure I could unstack them but I want to keep my edited and unedited images separately, in different folders, by default. The same way when working with Film, you keep your negatives in one place and your enlargements in another, they have nothing to do with each other. Aperture also has too many features that I don't need at all, along with the fact that it insists on importing everything (even if you choose to store files in their original location) which takes ages. Also, in Aperture, you can't just drag and drop files from Aperture to Skype for example, it will only drag the small-sized preview, which bothers me. Aperture also insists on converting every photo I send to Photoshop into TIFF format, which is stupid. Moreover, I can't drag and drop a file into Photoshop, I have to right click it and choose "Open in external editor", which is a bit counter-intuitive. In Bridge, I just press Enter for that, or double-click the file.

    I want to keep my edited and original files separate. I only want to look at my edited versions, as those are the images I consider "finished". The rest is just there in case I want to do something with them. Lightroom is good if you have 200 images to crop, then you obviously don't want 200 extra versions. But that's not how I work: I take 500 photos and choose 10 of those and edit them for days in Photoshop. I want to keep them in a separate folder, and not amongst the other 500 pictures. I don't want to see the other 500 at all, but I need to keep them obviously.

    In Lightroom and Aperture, something like Cropping is handled by a non-destructive effect, which means that I need to first export the image before being able to actually use it for anything. I don't like that. I want my files to be what they are. If I want to be non-destructive, I have my originals stored separately, and I work only on PSD files which can always be opened and reworked. I need the flexibility and precision of Photoshop. I also often have 5 different edited versions of the same image, I need those to show up separately.

    I basically would need Bridge without the slowness.

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