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  1. #1


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    best way to organize photos-used to windows
    I am used to working with a PC and opening two windows and dragging my photos from one folder to the other as an efficient way of moving and organizing them . I have my photos stored on an external hard drive (I bought the macbook pro with SSD memory 125mg and I am an avid photographer so I have tons of gbs of photos so putting them all on my internal hard drive was not the best option). What is the best way of moving them around on my hard drive? I don't seem to be able to open duplicate windows, so I have to open each one, and them re-save or click move.

    What am I missing?

    thanks

  2. #2

    RavingMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scotttyd View Post

    What am I missing?

    thanks
    iPhoto, Aperture or Adobe Lightroom.

    Manually dragging photos around is a PITR. All three of the programs I listed will gladly manage your photo catalogue for you. You can even maintain them in your current folder format.

    IMO for a large collection on external drives, Lightroom is the best choice.

    EDIT: For that matter you can open multiple windows and drag between them if you wish.
    I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .

  3. #3

    RadDave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scotttyd View Post
    I am used to working with a PC and opening two windows and dragging my photos from one folder to the other as an efficient way of moving and organizing them . I have my photos stored on an external hard drive (I bought the macbook pro with SSD memory 125mg and..........
    Hi Scotty.. - well, first I'm assuming that you have a MBP w/ a 128 GB SSD - correct? I'm a 'new' owner (1 month now) of a 256 GB SSD - you'll not going to have a lot of room on that drive so you need to consider your storage options w/ the amount of images you now own - just saying.

    Second, how well have you learned using 'Finder' (kind of the Windows Explorer substitute) on your MBP? If you understand how to open multiple Finder windows and select them for your external HDs & your photos folder, then transfer of your images is simpler - also there are a number of Finder substitutes that will add features similar to WE if that is of interest?

    SO, let us know where you are at w/ using Finder and further advice can be given!

  4. #4


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    Quote Originally Posted by Scotttyd View Post
    I am used to working with a PC and opening two windows and dragging my photos from one folder to the other as an efficient way of moving and organizing them .
    Let me blow your mind a little here.

    Stop organizing your photos. Let the computer do that while you focus on editing and sharing them.

    As mentioned above, all three of those programs will do this for you. I know some people really seem to like hand-organizing stuff, and that's nice -- but who has the time anymore? And even if I had the time, isn't that what I bought a computer to do?

    It may take a bit of mental adjustment to let go of the idea of organizing your photos, but I assure you that the programs mentioned (and others) can present your photos to you in any way you want and consequently it *does not matter* how they organize them internally. It's a very different concept I know but believe me it makes a difference.

  5. #5


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    I figured out how to open multiple windows - and with now about 40 folders and then numerous sub-folders I don't want to mess with manually moving them around. I currently have photoshop - it has an organizer - what is your opinion with these two options:
    1. Use iphoto and then use photoshop as an external editor (I still have to figure out how to do this)
    2. skip i photo and just use the photoshop organizer?

  6. #6

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    If you are used to and like Adobe Bridge (assume that is the organizer you are talking about) then stick with it. My opinion is Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is the best all around choice, but it costs money.

    iPhoto is free and came with your Mac. Certainly nothing wrong with giving it a try. In Preferences for import you can select for iPhoto to use reference to your photo rather than copying it to a Library File.
    I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .

  7. #7


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    Of course the problem with using the "reference" method (and this is true of any program that uses it) is that you can *never move the photos* or re-organize without starting all over.

    iPhoto's default mode removes this issue by handling the organizing for you, which you can rearrange pretty much any way you like (because the actual organization done by the computer doesn't change, just your view of it). I'm not familiar enough with Aperture or Lightroom to say but I presume they do much the same. I've always felt that the latter two programs were better suited for people who are trying to maintain a "photography catalog" whereas iPhoto is fine for most people who just want to keep their casual pictures together.

  8. #8


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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    Of course the problem with using the "reference" method (and this is true of any program that uses it) is that you can *never move the photos* or re-organize without starting all over.

    iPhoto's default mode removes this issue by handling the organizing for you, which you can rearrange pretty much any way you like (because the actual organization done by the computer doesn't change, just your view of it). I'm not familiar enough with Aperture or Lightroom to say but I presume they do much the same. I've always felt that the latter two programs were better suited for people who are trying to maintain a "photography catalog" whereas iPhoto is fine for most people who just want to keep their casual pictures together.
    I want to keep a sort of photography catolog. I do a lot of underwater photo - on a typical trip I take about 1000 pictures. More than 50% I delete upon initial review - I may end up keeping about 50 of them and doing some post editing on them (photoshop elements) - I have found the folder system works well for me. I will pull a few at a time and do my processing, then save in a new "edited" folder.

  9. #9

    RavingMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    Of course the problem with using the "reference" method (and this is true of any program that uses it) is that you can *never move the photos* or re-organize without starting all over.

    iPhoto's default mode removes this issue by handling the organizing for you, which you can rearrange pretty much any way you like (because the actual organization done by the computer doesn't change, just your view of it). I'm not familiar enough with Aperture or Lightroom to say but I presume they do much the same. I've always felt that the latter two programs were better suited for people who are trying to maintain a "photography catalog" whereas iPhoto is fine for most people who just want to keep their casual pictures together.
    I agree 100%

    The big (and perhaps only real) advantage to the reference method IMO is when you have an extensive collection on multiple drives. Lightroom makes it fairly easy to manage what becomes a mess otherwise.

    One thing that isn't quite true is about moving referenced photos. If you do it in Finder you will mess things up, but Lightroom lets you drag and drop between folders within the program organizer. It moves the files and updates the references.
    Quote Originally Posted by Scotttyd View Post
    I want to keep a sort of photography catolog. I do a lot of underwater photo - on a typical trip I take about 1000 pictures. More than 50% I delete upon initial review - I may end up keeping about 50 of them and doing some post editing on them (photoshop elements) - I have found the folder system works well for me. I will pull a few at a time and do my processing, then save in a new "edited" folder.
    Based on this last bit I would recommend you download the free trial for Lightroom. I wouldn't buy it just yet though because it appears version 5 will be out in June.
    I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .

  10. #10


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    thanks for all the help - this is where I sit right now.

    I have two external SSD hard drives - both with plenty of space.

    HD1 - I use time machine to back up my MBP on to.
    HD2- my "backup" for my photos

    I will not be using my internal SSD 128gb to store a copy of my photos simply because I have too many.

    This is what I want to be able to do.
    1. Take my SD card from my camera and dump my photos into a catalog on the external drive (this is what program I need to figure out that will do this?).
    2. Be able to go through my photos quickly and easily and delete the ones I do not want.
    3. I will be working on my external hard drive - I do not want to have to put them on my internal drive, work on them, then export them to my external hard drive and then delete then from the the internal drive - that just seems like way to much work.
    4. Easily pull up the photos I want in photoshop elements.
    5. Then when I am done - drag and drop them on to the back up external hard drive (or even better, some program that can do this automatically by cloning my other external harddrive



    Does this make sense?

  11. #11

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    Makes sense to me except for the SSD externals. Not sure the cost justifies the slight speed increase. You can buy quite a few GBs of standard HD for the cost of SSDs.

    Regardless, since you have them sounds good to me,
    I've always wanted to be smart, handsome and modest. But, I guess I'll have to be satisfied with two out of three . . .

  12. #12


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    maybe I am using the wrong terminology for my externals - I have a 1gb (paid $90) and another that is 500(paid less). I do not claim to be a computer expert - I am very much a novice.

    So, dumb question - since I have i photo free- I might as well try it - can I use I photo to take pictures from an sd card and put it straight onto my external?

  13. #13


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    I'm not quite understanding how you are referring to your external drives as "plenty of space" unless you are misusing the terminology. Just to be sure, let's review:

    SSD = solid state drive. Small capacities, very expensive, super-fast.
    HD or HDD = hard disk drive. Amazingly cheap and HUGE capacity, not as fast as SSD.

    1GB and 500MB (as you seem to be suggesting) is not a lot of space, particularly for a lot of photos. Perhaps you meant that you have 1TB (terrabyte, equals 1,000GBs) and 500GB HD external drives? That would make more sense.

    To answer your iPhoto question, iPhoto libraries can be located on any drive you want, so yes. The same applies for Lightroom and Aperture as well.

  14. #14

    dtravis7's Avatar
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    Chas I am very sure he meant to say 500GB and 1TB. I sure hope so!

  15. #15


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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    I'm not quite understanding how you are referring to your external drives as "plenty of space" unless you are misusing the terminology. Just to be sure, let's review:

    SSD = solid state drive. Small capacities, very expensive, super-fast.
    HD or HDD = hard disk drive. Amazingly cheap and HUGE capacity, not as fast as SSD.

    1GB and 500MB (as you seem to be suggesting) is not a lot of space, particularly for a lot of photos. Perhaps you meant that you have 1TB (terrabyte, equals 1,000GBs) and 500GB HD external drives? That would make more sense.

    To answer your iPhoto question, iPhoto libraries can be located on any drive you want, so yes. The same applies for Lightroom and Aperture as well.
    yes yes yes you are right - my mind was elsewhere - 1 TB and 500 GB external drives

    if you want to save the libraries on any drive - you do that under preferences?

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