Adobe Lightroom 3.0 - Directory Question

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by rgomes, Mar 10, 2010.

  1. rgomes macrumors member

    Jan 20, 2010

    I'm planning on purchasing Adobe Lightroom 3.0 when it comes out in the spring. I have about 5 DVD-R full of my photos that are mainly in RAW format. Where would be the best place to copy these on my MAC computer?

    PC used to have the MY PICTURES folder.

    Is there any advantage to having it in a particular folder when working in Lightroom?


  2. thomahawk macrumors 6502a


    Sep 3, 2008
    Osaka, Japan
    Lightroom should make its own folder in which it will store its pictures in. There won't be any problems with putting it in the "my pictures" folder. basically you just need to keep your photos organized under one folder. Usually if you let Lightroom do it's thing you wont have to worry about it.
  3. John.B macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2008
    Holocene Epoch
    Run, don't walk, to the X-Equals website and read their Digital Asset Management – The X-Equals Way article (in four parts).

    Also, buy/steal/borrow a copy of The DAM Book: Digital Asset Management for Photographers (2nd Edition).

    You'll thank me later. :cool:

    (BTW, it's a Mac, not a MAC.)
  4. Kebabselector macrumors 68030


    May 25, 2007
    Birmingham, UK
    OS X has a pictures folder under your home drive, you could put them there if you want. Lightroom has the ability to import them into it's own library or utilise them where they are.

    I have all my images on an external firewire drive (and my LR library - I do use a Mac Mini though so don't have much internal HDD capacity). On import I leave files in the original place. It's all personal preference to be honest, there's no right or wrong way of doing it.
  5. John.B macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2008
    Holocene Epoch
    Agreed. Though to put a finer point on it, the "wrong way" would be to lose your pictures in a hard drive crash or if your computer was stolen or your house caught fire or any of a number of other possible calamities.
  6. Razeus macrumors 603

    Jul 11, 2008
    X-Equals is the most ridiculous DAM I've seen. Wayyyy too many steps to track and get lost in with all those folders. Especially with LR and it's DAM features.

    I simply drop my RAW files into a folder, import to LR AND backup at the same time to a external drive for archive, then use Collections to sort the photos. I'll export files to seperate folders for jpeg and tiff for finished work. Then once a week, I simply back a back up to another drive of the Lightroom, RAW folder and Finished Work folders.

  7. emorydunn macrumors 6502


    Jun 5, 2006
    Austin Texas
    I organise my files by year, month, and then shoot. I store my Lightroom catalogue inside the Lightroom folder.

    So my folder structure looks like this:
    User/Pictures/Lightroom/Photos/2010/02_Feb/L'Union Fait La Force
  8. Edge100 macrumors 68000

    May 14, 2002
    Where am I???
    I agree; the X-equals method is WAAAY too complicated for me.

    I would suggest organizing by date (YYYY-MM-DD) and project name, and using Collections as Razeus suggests. LR has excellent metadata searching too, so that's an easy way to find photos without an elaborate folder system.
  9. John.B macrumors 601


    Jan 15, 2008
    Holocene Epoch
    It's as easy or as complicated as you want to make it.

    The trick is to get the Lightroom import dialog setup to support whatever file and folder naming convention you use. It's one of two features of Lr that I would miss if I went back to Aperture full time (the other being the graduated filter). The main advantage is that you incorporate key data into the naming which makes searching at the OS easier. And because that data lives outside the catalog the transition to a different DAM would be easier if necessary. Not to mention if your catalog ever got hopeless corrupted.
  10. soup4you2 macrumors regular

    Apr 12, 2007
    I'm discovering lately with 3.0 beta that just doing year, date works just fine for folder structure. but the real power is in metadata.

    Just be sure to save your metadata to the actual files every now and then.. (apple+s key)
  11. Razeus macrumors 603

    Jul 11, 2008
    The X-Equals method is good IF, and only IF, you are not use a tool like Lightroom or Aperture (in which LR is the superior tool). Using their structure totally defeats the purpose of using Lightroom in the first place.

    To simplify:

    In your Pictures folder on your main drive:
    1) One folder for Lightroom to maintain the catalogs (auto created by LR itself)
    ~you shouldn't even have to touch this folder
    2)One folder for your files, perhaps name it "Photography"
    ~drop all your files into this folder; no sub-folders are needed - simply put them in there
    3)One folder for finished work called "Portfolio"
    ~1 sub folder for JPEGS; 1 folder for TIFFS;

    Frankly, that's it as far as folder structure.

    As far as organzing photos, LR's Collections feature is really like a having "folders", but sooooooo much easier to update and manipulate its contents.
    For example, although my photos are dumped into my "Photography" folder, within Lightroom I can make a Collection called Zoo in which all my photos ever taken at the Zoo are within. If I have Black and Whites Collection, it'll pull every B&W photo I have (assuming it's tagged). This is soo much easier than setting up folders at the OS level, which frankly limits you and becomes tedious trying to find certain things.

    Once a week (frequency depending on how much you are doing), simply backup these folders to an external drive for backup; perhaps 1 more drive to have offsite

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