Best tool for Photo Library management...

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by netdog, Jul 9, 2007.

  1. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Location:
    London
    #1
    I currently have CS3 Design Premium and iPhoto.

    I can't find how CS3 can manage image location well, and find that iPhoto's method of file organization (completely non-intuitive in terms of directory structure). CS3 does handle my RAW image manipulation fine, but I want my photos organized in a structure that will carry me into the future -- organized by logical topics and nested in folders (within Finder) that will always make photos easy to find regardless of app and make that organizing easy.

    I'd rather avoid any small 3rd party apps as I want an app that will be around in the future.

    Am I a candidate for Aperture? Could I achieve this kind of import from iPhoto (where everything currently lives) in a fast, automated, visual way? Something else?
     
  2. Fearless Leader macrumors 68020

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    Mar 21, 2006
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    Hoosiertown
    #2
    aperture stores everything in a giant database type file, so if aperture ever goes under, you loose a lot, but can scrape your photos out, as they originally were when you first imported them.
     
  3. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
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    London
    #3
    It doesn't have to. You can store images in your own, custom designed, folder structure if you want. You can migrate existing managed file to referenced files, import new images as referenced and basically mix-and-match between Aperture managed and referenced files...
     
  4. Fearless Leader macrumors 68020

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    #4
    seriously? I think I just fell in love with aperture again.
     
  5. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Location Location Location
    #5
    However, the changes that you make would be lost, since apps like Aperture and Lightroom don't really edit your photos.

    Oh, and you'd have to stick with this one app for life, unless you want to start over many years down the road. :eek:

    Lightroom and Aperture can organise photos the way you want, I think. However, you will be attached to an application, which you say you don't want.
     
  6. netdog thread starter macrumors 603

    netdog

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Location:
    London
    #6
    But if the files are organized in a logical file structure, couldn't I then switch apps (even from Lightroom to Aperture or Aperture to Lightroom) and just import all the files without moving them from their intuitive Finder nests?
     
  7. Fearless Leader macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2006
    Location:
    Hoosiertown
    #7
    yes but the problem lies with the fact that these new breeds of photo management tools, don't actually change your photos. They store the processes that the photo undertook when you edited it, and render out the photo, so you can go back to the original when ever you want.

    but, since the selected app of choice is the only app that can read that file, you can only move originals, unless you exported the images, but that would loose the logical file structure (not sure on that last one.)
     
  8. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    Jul 24, 2002
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    London
    #8
    Yes, since 1.5 :)
     
  9. Fearless Leader macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2006
    Location:
    Hoosiertown
    #9
    aperture was really a waste of money for me, all I need is iphoto, I think I went crazy after picking up the d50, d40, and a couple of lenses.
     
  10. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    Jul 24, 2002
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    #10
    Flog it on eBay then! That's how I picked up my license for £70 just before the free 1.5 upgrade :D
     
  11. timnosenzo macrumors 6502a

    timnosenzo

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2004
    Location:
    ct, us
    #11
    If you're just looking for something to organize your photos, you may want to consider iView Media Pro. I used it before going to Aperture--it worked great for just cataloging and organizing my pictures, then I would use CS2 to edit them. Although I got tired of using 2 separate apps which is a big reason why I went to Aperture. :)
     
  12. M@lew macrumors 68000

    M@lew

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2006
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #12
    I never really got Aperture's "Project" management. So one reason why I like Lightroom is that you can access your photo's directly from the folders you set up in finder. Just tell Lightroom which folders it uses.
     
  13. caspiyoav macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #13
    So right...

    I COULDN'T AGREE MORE... !!!!
    As much as we all like apple products, we must agree that photo-organising in iPhoto is rubbish, and FAR from being capable enough...
    Not being able to work with a folder structure is ridiculous and makes absolutely no sense, not to mention copy/pasting is driving me CRAZY !!!! IT IS SOOO BAD.... :mad:

    I'm considering photoshop elements 6, which I think is better in this respect, however then I lose the whole Web-Gallery thing, which I use daily...

    I've been looking around the net and couldn't find any good solution...

    would be extremely grateful to anyone who comes up with good solution...
     
  14. bking1000 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    #14
    Why must we agree? I don't agree. I don't think it's 100% super-fantastic, but I wouldn't agree it's rubbish. I've tried Picasa and folders in Windows, and bridge, Lightroom, Aperture 1.5 and 2 and iPhoto 08 on the Mac.

    For my purposes (and I would never go so far as to say this is the way it must be for others) having iPhoto org my photos, and make that nice little jpeg copy with my changes, is fine for me (about 3000 photos). Maybe it wouldn't be for others with 30,000 photos.

    If I ever wanted to pull them out, into a file directory structure, it would take a bit of work, but then again, it took me a bit of work to move into iPhoto from Picasa windows. Transitions always take effort, and digital media evolves so rapidly, any platform choice represents some level of risk.
     
  15. disdat macrumors regular

    disdat

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2005
    Location:
    New England USA
    #15
    I use iPhoto 08, didn't think I would like it coming from iPhoto 06, but I do. I use the iPhoto Library Manager, with several different libraries (most of which are located on an external hard drive).

    I use Lightzone (by Lightcrafts) for my heavy editing and I find between the two, it works.
     
  16. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #16
    You can do this in iPhoto. When you import the photos iPhoto will organize them into "events" but you can also make any number of folders and foldrs inside foldrs and so on and place you photos inside these as well as leaving them inside the events.

    Yes it is non-intuitive. Lots of people can't understand how a photo can be in multiple locations at the same time. How can the phot be inside an even and in the "San Francisco" folder and the "Jane Doe" and the "Street Scenes" folders all at the same time? Non-intuitive only at first then yo get used to it

    Notice that iTunes does this exact same trick with albums and playlists and smart albums

    Aperture does this same thing as well.

    In all of these cases, iPhoto, iTunes and Aperture keep the file in some "library" and the folders only contain "pointers" not the actual file.

    I don't understand why you can't make folders in iPhoto 08.
    It's easy. Up at the top menu there are options to create new folders and new smart folders. You can even nest them. Most of Apple's software is using this concept now because people find it easy.

    iPhoto can also do this. Both programs use the term "referenced file" to mean files not managed by the program. iPhot and Aperture both work the same way.

    But that is dangerous. If you move, rename or touch" a file it basically "disappears" from Aperture because Aperture only stores a pointer to the file. So if the file is modified outside of Aperture with say the finder Aperture's pointer is not updated. If you are going to mess with your master files using the finder you had better really understand what you are doing and even then hope that you never make a mistake. You can loose much work if a folder gets moved.
     
  17. iFizz macrumors regular

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    Apr 2, 2008
    Location:
    Third planet from the star called "Sun"
    #17
    Aperture can support what you are describing.
     
  18. art gardiner macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2007
    Location:
    Cairo, Egypt
    #18
    most of the catalog / library apps out on the market work off your original image ingest. they simply fine tune the organization of files once you have taken them off your cf/sd card. as mentioned, iview (now expression media) is a great tool for organizing/structuring a data base. others include; photo mechanic, extensis portfolio, canto cumulus, etc.

    the key is to create your own file structure/hierarchy within your given os platform, and structure your cataloging app to taylor to your specific needs. be it as simple as a file structure of year<month, or via client - your time is best spent on this portion. every other cataloging app can adjust from there. then you can concentrate on how you want to structure individual images from there.

    where do you want to take this process? do you want to adjust exif data, add keywords, batch process by client, automate some of the basic tasks? the list goes on. what works for one person may not work for you. personally, i work in two management programs. the first is iview, where i do most of my weeding out. then i go into portfolio to copy and catalogue the keepers - adding pertinent data to each batch based on job, client and keyword. is this the best way? for me it is the most comfortable. from portfolio i take them into ps, and color correct, etc. then back into portfolio with a "watch" folder that automatically logs them for me.

    again, this works for me, and many may feel it's a waist of time when portfolio can do it all (minus major image editing) on it's own - or vice versa with iview. but, this works for me, and affords me the flexibility i need. your needs may very. the only way to know for sure, is to take your time to think out what you need personally, and go from there. unfortunately, it's really not a decision that someone can make for you without knowing how you think, or what your needs are.

    hth's

    art
     
  19. theBB macrumors 68020

    theBB

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2006
    #19
    Are you sure? Such links in iPhoto '06 are smart enough that if you simply move or rename the photo, it can still keep track. This is true for iTunes as well. Don't ask me how, but obviously it is not like the soft links in UNIX.
     
  20. caspiyoav macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #20
    Why CAN'T I ... in iPhoto 08

    - Paste photos onto an event without opening it....
    - copy paste pics after performing a search... it has to be from the main 'unsearched' view...
    - split/merge or basically do ANYTHING after I searched for photos... WHY the hell does iphoto care if I searched for it first? erggggg....!!!
    - have a Sub-event of some sort...
    - and so if you cut/copy a picture from one event you have to scorll/while clicking until you happen to stumble upon the event you're looking for...
    - and so many other things I can't think of at the moment...

    I have approx 18,000 pics.

    It just isn't flexible enough !!!:mad:
    I thought I was going to like it, and I did at first - but not anymore!!!

    How can you do this?

    How can you do this?
     
  21. bking1000 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    #21
    Here's my take on events and folders/albums in iPhoto:

    The interface is not perfect. I agree, events should be easier to manage in, and there should be sub-events. However, no matter how much iPhoto talks about events, the real power is in albums and folders. Just remember: albums contain photos, and folders contain albums (or sub-folders). So, you can create three albums under folder a, three albums under folder b, and folder c can contain folders a and b, and also another album.

    Aperture's folder and project support is much more robust than iPhoto's, but I actually like iPhotos overall user interface quicker and easier.

    Some suggestions to get started:
    Try right clicking on events, and choose "open in new window" then you get a floating window of the event you want to disperse photos from. Type "apple-~" (apple key plus the tilde key) to switch between the floating event and the main iPhoto window.

    I am not sure about copy and paste from search, but here's a tip: I only use flags on photos for short term organization. As I look through my photos to group them together, when I find one I like, I hit apple-. (apple key and the period key). This toggles the flag on the photo. Once I have flagged all the ones I want -- look on the left and you'll see a folder called "flagged photos" That now contains a reference to all the photos you just flagged. You can then open this folder, type "ctrl-a" to select all the photos, then drag those photos into a new album. When you are done, select all the photos in the flagged folder, and type apple-period again, and that will unflag all the photos, and empty the flagged folder, and you can start over with a new grouping. I'll have to get to my Mac and check out how to use this when searching.

    One thing you may be having trouble with is events vs. albums. Events contain your "original" photo while albums contain points to that photo. So, you can only have a single photo in a single event (unless you duplicate the photo). However, you can have that same photo in multiple albums, because it's only a pointer. For this reason, the copy and past behavior between events and albums is different.

    One other tip to try -- in preferences set double-click to "edit picture" and set edit to "edit in full screen" This opens the iPhoto editor every time you double click a photo. Then when in full screen edit mode, go up to the view menu, and set thumbnails to be on top (for example) and hide. This is just my preference, but I think it sets up a pretty cool interface for working with your pictures.

    Other tips, when in full screen edit mode -- type "A" to open adjustments, apple-I to bring up the information screen (and vice versa for to close either one). Also, use "c" for crop and "s" for straighten.

    Sorry for the random ramblings. It's tough to explain this on-line. Feel free to PM me with specific questions, and I'll be happy to help.
     
  22. caspiyoav macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #22
    Thanks for your patience...

    I was not aware of the possibility of creating folders in iPhoto.
    I hope this makes a difference, I was experimenting a bit and I have a couple questions about it (if you don't mind....):
    1. As far as I could see, there is no possibility to create a sub-folder or sub-album, correct?
    2. I can see that if I make changes to the photos in the event that is also apparent in the album, however, if I choose to change an event's name - that does not update in the folder. so how can I keep the folders updated? or is the solution to stop working with the events altogether and work from the folders? but that's a bit a hassle, isn't it?
    3. Is it viable for me to start building a folder structure for all of my 18000 pics? is that a bit ridiculous?

    would appreciate your opinion.
    Thanks

    Adobe photoshop elements

    Does anyone use that?
    How are photos organised there? is there control over the folder structure?
    how do you overcome the issue of the lack of compatibility with the .mac web gallery?

    thanks
    Yoav
     
  23. bking1000 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    #23
    One persons' opinion:
    1. you can create sub-folders (but not sub-albums): just create a new folder and drag it onto an existing folder, and it will move to be a sub-folder. This does get into one of the things I don't like about iPhoto: when you create a new folder or album, it ALWAYS drops it to the bottom of the list, instead of creating it in the folder you are already in. So, after you create a new folder or album, you have to drag it to where you want it. Not good. Aperture allows you to create a new folder where you are.

    2. I do not directly link folders and events, and they are both independently named. Here is a metaphor: Events are like rolls of film. They are grouped together by when you took them. Albums are like making reprints of the picture, and putting them into books for display. Your wedding album might have 30 nice pictures, but perhaps 75 were taken. You might keep all 75 in the event, but only display 30 in the album. That's only one metaphor. You might choose to work a different way.

    3. Personally, I cannot speak to that. I have 3000 pictures, and it took a bit to build the files. I really do like the iPhoto interface. After I built my iPhoto structure, Aperture came out, and I think the Aperture album and folder approach is much more robust, but I like the iPhoto interface better, and like the fact that it creates a jpg with my changes, instead of just being a database of edit tags. So, I'm sticking w/iPhoto. Perhaps others might comment on a library your size. I am hoping Apple might improve the folder interface in iPhoto in the next release. I continue to re-evaluate tools, and still find I like iPhoto best. I heard Picasa might be coming to the Mac, so that's the next one I have my eye on for test. Right now I'm iPhoto and Photoshop Elements.

    PSE6 uses adobe bridge. You can download a free trial from adobe.com. Not sure about .mac integration, which is another reason to stick w/iPhoto (or Aperture)
     
  24. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
    Location:
    In my imagination
    #24
    I say go with Aperture because you can import not only your images but AFAIK your edits from iPhoto into Aperture, then export your images to folders but have them linked to Aperture. Once Aperture got that feature Lightroom was only appealing to those that either:

    1. Don't change their workflows often, and
    2. Found Aperture too slow.

    Now that 2.0 is out it would be even harder to go with anything else if you need an app now, and not when LR 2.0 comes.

    I have 10,000 images located in various folders all linked into Aperture. The beautiful thing is that Bridge, which lets me view video files and other graphics can access the system as well, and I can use Time Machine to back up my images.

    Don't worry about loosing any library since Aperture and LR both allow you back your library up, that was a moot point and I really don't know why anyone would have brought it up. If you use multiple Apple apps and you want to integrate your photo library into them then go with Aperture since it's the only app that works well with Mac OS X and Apple apps. If not, then just take your pick.... and there are other options besides Aperture and LR that are in some cases better.
     
  25. h1kar1 macrumors regular

    h1kar1

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2007
    Location:
    Los angeles
    #25
    I use aperture 2 myself

    It took me a while to get used to it and learn it a bit more.

    being a PC guy and new to the mac it took a bit.

    Apertuer - has backing up built in called vaults.

    You are not stuck with aperture all you have to do is export versions

    version = modified version of your master.

    if you want un modified version your true originals export masters.

    you can also import images with foldors to keep you foldor layout. that is what i did with over 40gigs a picuters it worked fine.

    and yes aperture work great with app apps' and other apple hardware
    like the iphone can import right to my iphone and can also sync images from aperture to my appletv also.

    just food for thought.
     

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