Aperture workflow with Photoshop

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by JonD25, Jan 9, 2008.

  1. JonD25 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2006
    #1
    Ok, here's my general workflow.

    1) Import RAW images from memory card into Aperture
    2) General exposure, white balance, and levels adjustments
    3) Export certain images to Photoshop as PSD
    4) In photoshop, mostly edit with curves, also some manipulation like the clone stamp or healing brush or burning/dodging, keeping as many layers as possible in case of future editing (aka, anything I can't do in Aperture that I can only do in PS)
    5) Save image. Done.

    My problem now is that as I shoot more and more photos, my library starts growing a lot. My Aperture library right now is over 30 GB, and space is quickly becoming an issue. Does anyone have any suggestions to better my workflow, especially in order to keep the size of my library down? Would you convert your RAW images to something else like tiff or jpg after step 2 and reimport them? Or do you keep all your RAW images stored in your library? Should I just bite the bullet and buy a huge external hard drive? (I already have a 250 GB for Time Machine and a 120 GB for recording and storing some other things, and they're both almost completely full)
     
  2. Mantat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Montréal (Canada)
    #2
    I feel your pain!

    First of all, TIFF are bigger than RAW, so stay with the RAW images and JPEGs.

    Also, you can do a lot of modification you are doing right now from inside Aperture. Maybe Aperture tools arent as good as PS, but for most of the time, my guess is that the healing and stamp tool, curves, etc can do the job. The only real missing feature is a good sharpening tool. USM sharpening is much better than anything available in Aperture and other more advanced sharpening techniques can only be done in PS.

    So my suggestion is to do as much editing inside Aperture and only export to PS for the final adjustment or when PS is really required. This is probably going to save you a lot of space. I did a quick photoshoot the other day of about 30 pics, 5 were keepers, edited them all in TIFF mode and now this whole project is taking more than a Gig!!! No more TIFF for me!

    Once you are done with a project, you can always export the whole project and archive it on DVDs. If you do so, my advice is to first make an export of all pics in JPEGs so you can reimport the JPEGs once the project is out and tag them with the DVD #. So you will still have all your pictures in your computer. If you ever need the original file, you can fetch it. I havent done that yet but I am about to do so (current lib size: 54gig).

    My final suggestion is to get a 500gig external HD, they cost about 120$ and should last you a bit. There are two posts on the Oreilly Media (section: Inside Aperture) that talked about storage strategies, I suggest you go take a look.

    Finaly, make sure the size of your previews isnt bigger than your screen resolution. If so, change it then use the generate preview function with the command (or is that option?) key pressed. Aperture will then regenerate all previews with the new size. This isnt a drastic space saving tip, but can make a difference if you have a lot of pics.
     
  3. pprior macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    #3
    I feel the pain. As I do more and more photoshop I'm getting many multilayered images 16 bit tiff than are 200+MB each.

    However the ease of organization with Aperture takes the pain away and I just keep buying larger hard drives.

    You can get a terrabyte drive now for under $400. I just think it's time to give up on the idea of worrying about drive space and buy what you need.

    I remember back when I had one of the first hard drives released in computers - it was 10mb (that's right MB) and once it was full I was always going around looking for 10K or 20K files to delete to free up space....now a single picture is 20 times the size of my entire HD at that time :)
     
  4. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #4
    The last disk I bought was a Seagate 500GB for $99.95. The 750GB are at $180. I'm currently shopping for a 4 or 5 bay case that will hold some 500 or 750GB drives.

    How much did you spend to create the image? Just in equipment (camera, lenses, computers and software) alone it is many thousands and then what was the cost of setting up the shot or travel to the location? You can spend another $400 on storage. A 30Gb Apertur library is "nothing". Many photographers are using terrabyte size RAID devices now. And they are cheap. just two $100 drives and you have 1TB.
     
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #5
    I still have mine. I kept it as a historic relic. It is a seagate 10MB disk, it is about 3 inches tall and I paid $600 for it. I remember being astounded "I disk drive for under $1,000!" They were nothing new. CDC built the first disks in the 1960's and we had hundreds of them at work, but they were nothing a normal person could buy.

    Back when 10MB cost $600 you worried about space but now the last drive I bought works out to 20 cents per GB. So that 30GB Aperture library costs all of six bucks at today's prices.
     
  6. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #6
    So what you are saying is that your project costs you a little over 24 cents. and you are considering giving up TIFF due to the cost of storage.
     
  7. JonD25 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2006
    #7
    Obviously the long term solution is to buy another hard drive. I just wondered if maybe there was a better way to do things than I was currently doing, more for short term as money is a bit tight right now and any money I do get has to go to other things besides hard drives.
     

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