Cataloging your digital images

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by test1, Jan 3, 2006.

  1. Hi

    Just wanted to share with you my recent experience.

    After one year using digital camera I've got thousands images. Until
    recently I had them on the hard drive. However since disk space got
    lower and instant access to raw images isn't critical, I started to
    think about a way to put my photos on CD. Then obvious problem came up
    - how am I going to find arbitrary image when I need it? Printing
    index for each CD appeared as a good idea but on the other hand
    inconvinience in storing index pages and you can't perform machine
    search on those pages either. "No paper" solution was very desirable.
    Burning photos on CD in categories didn't appeal to me either - too
    much work and yet no info about individual images.

    Finaly I've discovered that Adobe PhotoAlbum even in Starter Edition
    provides possibility to catalog images on CD, but what's more
    important - there is an option to store only low-resolution copy on
    the hard disk and record label and optionally short note about the CD
    where original is located.

    So now my process is as follow:

    1) Edit raw image in Canon Digital PhotoPro and store recipe (don't
    save image itself else they grow bigger); crop only roughly
    2) Convert images to jpeg resizing them so that longer side is 768
    pixels (so it can fit on most screen without extra resize). Do not
    change file name.
    3) Burn raw images along with recipe (those .vrd files) and
    screen-size jpegs to CD
    4) Import jpegs from the CD (not from original folder on you hard
    drive) to Adobe Photo Album Starter Edition and choose to keep images
    offline (it will create low-res copy on hard disk); label will be
    taken automatically (from CD label specified during burning) and put
    extra small note if necessary; now CD can go to the storage
    5) Categorize images as desirable using tags and collections in the
    Photo Album

    That's all. Now I can remove originals from the local disk. Whenever
    need comes, I can search images in Photo Album just like the would
    have been on the local disk; and if I need to find original, just try
    to edit the image - Adobe PhotoAlbum will ask to insert disk labeled
    "blah-blah-blah" (whatever you have specified above). Just press
    'cancel' (so you don't make low-res copy to be unlinked from its
    original on CD). The rest is easy - find the disk with required label,
    copy desirable image to the hard drive. Voila!

    What I like in this aproach is that it's free, easy and powerfull.
  2. A major weakness in your system is that you appear to be saving images to only one CD. If that CD fails then those images will be lost. A sensible modification is to save each image to 2 or preferably 3 CD's, with at least one CD being stored off site.
  3. Hi Ted,

    I do this too (just a standard backup technique), just didn't mention it here as the focus was on how to find images once they're on CD rather than on how to build reliable storage system.

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