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How to Organize Images?
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Feb 9, 2017, 09:07 #1
EnglishBob AKA Craig *****
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I'm not sure how others store their images, but for a number of years I have stored mine in folders by date, they are stored hierarchically in subfolders for year, month and day.

Recently I was trying to help my wife, Anna, sort out her images. They were stored by date the last year or two, but everything else was in folders named where she was, the camera she used, some cute name, anything really, with no logical order or way to find more recent work.

She also had phone images, Facebook images and backed up phone images mixed in. The result was 41 GB of images, with many duplicates of a lot of them (up to 6 copies of a single image).

I set about organizing them... the first couple of hours was me sorting through and culling the obvious duplicates, slow and very ineffective when the shear number of images was considered. I started searching around the internet and came up with a couple of free programs that really sorted out the process.

The first was dupeGuru, a small utility that just pulls out duplicates based on file name, or img details. IT is free, but the current version no longer supports PC. They still make an older version available for windows and it worked just fine.

dupeGuru: https://www.hardcoded.net/dupeguru/

Now it was time to cull the facebook images, I used windows search and pulled every image with either .FB. or facebook in the file names, these were the facebook version of images that we already had, lower resolution and compressed. I also noted that her original cell phone pictures had numerical file names, while the back ups had either "Cell phone" or "CAM" in the file names, these were eliminated in the same manner.

Now I was down to a more manageable 12408 files, but they were still clustered everywhere, no logical file order or folder structure.

This lead to more searching and I came across DIM 5 - Digital Image Mover. It was an automated program that would take a folder, search the images for exif data and then rebuild a catalog in date or, structured by year, month and day. It could actually rename the files, and the structure was user configurable. Perfect, now my OCD obsessed brain could deal with the pictures, in a nice logical order!

DIM 5 by Alan Light: http://www.alanlight.com/dim/Dim.htm and http://digitalimagemover.tumblr.com/

Mission accomplished!

Now obviously before attempting anything like this, be sure to have a backup of the entire catalog of images, just in case anything goes wrong.


Feb 9, 2017, 14:26 #2
snaphappy aka Jane ****
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Thank you for the info Craig. I also organise my photos by yearly folders, then subject sub folders. These links may help me tidy up the older ones I haven't got round to doing yet.

Jane

Feb 10, 2017, 01:00 #3
delb0y Senior Member ****
Status: Online Posts:292 Threads:62 Joined:Mar 2016 Reputation: 3
Mine are stored in monthly folders, with sub folders inside:

February 17
Gig
Birds
Random

But it's a pretty poor system. Many times I recall a particular photo but not when I took it - trying to locate it is then a nightmare! Luckily anything of any artistic value gets loaded onto Flickr - not that many - and so I can usually find a photo date that way. Armed with the date I can then track back to the folder and find the original.

I keep thinking I ought to use Lightroom better, especially the key-wording feature.

What might do is draw a line under everything I've done so far and start a new Light Room catalogue and use those keywords as I load stuff. Not taking many pictures at the moment so it may be a good time to start a new regime.

Feb 10, 2017, 04:28 #4
Jocko John T *****
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Craig: That DIM 5 is excellent. Thanks for the tip.

Ask yourself, "What's most important for the final image?".

Feb 10, 2017, 09:34 #5
EnglishBob AKA Craig *****
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(Feb 10, 2017, 01:00)delb0y Wrote:  What might do is draw a line under everything I've done so far and start a new Light Room catalogue and use those keywords as I load stuff. Not taking many pictures at the moment so it may be a good time to start a new regime.

I started keywording and tagging my back catalog Derek, about 15% done in 6 months... only 150,000 or so to go! I don't see me getting it fone ever LOL.

I keep a log of where I shoot in an excel spreadsheet, which gives me a date for when I was in Yosemite etc, I just have to remember which trip I shot "that" shot. Where the log does come in handy is if i need to find a shoot I did for a specific client or property.

Feb 15, 2017, 08:07 #6
greenster93 Junior Member **
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(Feb 10, 2017, 09:34)EnglishBob Wrote:  
(Feb 10, 2017, 01:00)delb0y Wrote:  What  might do is draw a line under everything I've done so far and start a new Light Room catalogue and use those keywords as I load stuff. Not taking many pictures at the moment so it may be a good time to start a new regime.

I started keywording and tagging my back catalog Derek, about 15% done in 6 months... only 150,000 or so to go!  I don't see me getting it fone ever LOL.

I keep a log of where I shoot in an excel spreadsheet, which gives me a date for when I was in Yosemite etc, I just have to remember which trip I shot "that" shot.   Where the log does come in handy is if i need to find a shoot I did for a specific client or property.
Do you manually enter the data into the excel spreadsheet or can you get the catalogue software to output into a log file.


Feb 15, 2017, 09:51 #7
EnglishBob AKA Craig *****
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When I remember I go into the sheet and just add dates and locations manually. I'm not real good at remembering to keep it up, so then I go through my catalog and see where I have shot.

Client shoots I am good at logging, and they are usually what prompt me to go through my own and add them.

Feb 15, 2017, 13:10 #8
jjford43 Member ***
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I catalog by place taken then by year month and day I might not remember what year I took a photo but will usually rember the place this might not be the best way to do it but it works for me

Feb 15, 2017, 19:08 #9
EnglishBob AKA Craig *****
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I started out that way for the first few years, but then I just wanted them in order, by date taken. (I will admit to having a touch of OCD in some areas of my life, was a compulsive lock checker for years and have to keep my CD's/books in order!)

(Feb 15, 2017, 13:10)jjford43 Wrote:  I catalog by place taken then by year month and day I might not remember what year I took a photo but will usually rember the place this might not be the best way to do it but it works for me

Feb 15, 2017, 23:43 #10
Jocko John T *****
Status: Offline Posts:1,229 Threads:95 Joined:Nov 2015 Reputation: 4
I have just used Dim and DupeGuru to sort out my images and they are excellent. I had all my images sorted as I liked them, then mistakenly used AVG to root out duplicate files in my system. Unfortunately it messed up all my images. As well as having them all filed in some sort of order I had a huge folder called "Images" with a copy of every one of them there. After AVG did its thing I had some in that folder and some in the classification folders. A complete pig's ear.
Years ago I was scanning old family photos and was amazed at how many contained people and placed I could not identify. I then found a group my father had taken, while stationed in Ceylon, during WW II. On the back he had written who, where and when and it was a revelation. From that moment on I did that with every digital image I took. Who (in groups from left to right), where (even places that are blatantly obvious to me), and the date taken (I know exif gives that, but many of my images were processed in early PS, which didn't retain exif data). So instead of the file being called IMG12345 it will be John, London 1-2-03

Ask yourself, "What's most important for the final image?".

Feb 16, 2017, 08:04 #11
greenster93 Junior Member **
Status: Offline Posts:6 Threads:1 Joined:Dec 2013 Reputation: 0
(Feb 9, 2017, 09:07)EnglishBob Wrote:  I'm not sure how others store their images, but for a number of years I have stored mine in folders by date, they are stored hierarchically in subfolders for year, month and day.

Recently I was trying to help my wife, Anna, sort out her images.  They were stored by date the last year or two, but everything else was in folders named where she was, the camera she used, some cute name, anything really, with no logical order or way to find more recent work.

She also had phone images, Facebook images and backed up phone images mixed in.  The result was 41 GB of images, with many duplicates of a lot of them (up to 6 copies of a single image).

I set about organizing them... the first couple of hours was me sorting through and culling the obvious duplicates, slow and very ineffective when the shear number of images was considered.  I started searching around the internet and came up with a couple of free programs that really sorted out the process.

The first was dupeGuru, a small utility that just pulls out duplicates based on file name, or img details.  IT is free, but the current version no longer supports PC.  They still make an older version available for windows and it worked just fine.

dupeGuru: https://www.hardcoded.net/dupeguru/

Now it was time to cull the facebook images, I used windows search and pulled every image with either .FB. or facebook in the file names, these were the facebook version of images that we already had, lower resolution and compressed.  I also noted that her original cell phone pictures had numerical file names, while the back ups had either "Cell phone" or "CAM" in the file names, these were eliminated in the same manner.

Now I was down to a more manageable 12408 files, but they were still clustered everywhere, no logical file order or folder structure.

This lead to more searching and I came across DIM 5 - Digital Image Mover.  It was an automated program that would take a folder, search the images for exif data and then rebuild a catalog in date or, structured by year, month and day.  It could actually rename the files, and the structure was user configurable.  Perfect, now my OCD obsessed brain could deal with the pictures, in a nice logical order!

DIM 5 by Alan Light: http://www.alanlight.com/dim/Dim.htm and http://digitalimagemover.tumblr.com/

Mission accomplished!

Now obviously before attempting anything like this, be sure to have a backup of the entire catalog of images, just in case anything goes wrong.
I did a search on adobe support and found this blog on using an exif tool which will search and export your exif data into a csf file. When i get a chance i will read up on this a bit more to see how it will work.
Link below with info if you are interested
http://metadatadeluxe.pbworks.com/w/page...ort%20Tool


Feb 16, 2017, 10:37 #12
EnglishBob AKA Craig *****
Status: Offline Posts:3,541 Threads:227 Joined:Oct 2004 Reputation: 8
Thanks for sharing, will take a look at it.

Feb 20, 2017, 02:18 #13
greenster93 Junior Member **
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(Feb 16, 2017, 10:37)EnglishBob Wrote:  Thanks for sharing, will take a look at it.
I was thinking of two directory structures 
First directory structure for raw files CAPTURE directory SELECT directory for DNG files Directory MASTER for psd files then OUTPUT directory for tif and jpeg.
Second directory structure for post production EVENTS, FAMILY, PORTRAITS, TRAVEL, ANIMALS, FLOWERS, LANDSCAPES, STREETSCENES.
Then within travel sub folders with Florida June 2012 etc.
What do you think.

Feb 21, 2017, 10:58 #14
EnglishBob AKA Craig *****
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I had mine by Type at one point, but reverted to strictly date raw images, I do split processed images for Competition etc in a structure similar to that, I spit mine by PSA diviision.

Apr 9, 2017, 00:12 #15
Gleadly Junior Member **
Status: Offline Posts:1 Threads:0 Joined:Apr 2017 Reputation: 0
I've used Daminion for several years and it has a host of options, too many to mention.
It's free for up to 15,000 pics and upgrades are very cheap.

The best feature is that one can create Categories and Keywords so it easy to create collections.

Worth trying out.

Apr 10, 2017, 15:03 #16
Barbara G. Moderator *****
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By the way, welcome to the photography forums - Gleadly!

Barbara - Life is what you make of it!







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