A nightmarish problem that just keeps growing and growing is how to deal with all your personal data when it comes to pictures and video. I’ve been using this work-flow for some years now, I thought I should share it and get some feedback. I do plan on making a few changes to it in the near future.
I shoot mostly still images, in RAW format and then process them into JPGs or PSDs. So the first management issue is, once the images are processed, do I delete the originals, no, IÂ keep it, the same way that you would save the old film negatives for later reproduction, same apply’s here, you may want to develop that RAW image in a different fashion at a later date. I save developed images in the same directory from that shoot. Speaking of file system, I have recently shifted to dumping the days shoot into a single folder with the date, I sometimes will add additional date to the folder as well.
I organize each daily folder into a monthly folder into a yearly folder. I use Expression Media as my cataloging tool and I catalog based on a years worth of images (I use to have one master of all years, until it corrupted one day and I lost all my meta data 🙁 ).
So the hardware flow is as the following, dump to my Pictures folder, (or lately I carry a portable Seagate 500gb drive that I have been using since I keep filling up my Laptop drive, to a 2TB LaCie RAID that I connect to my laptop one or twice a month (more often if I have some really nice shots that I don’t want to risk). I then sync the 2TB desktop RAID with my 2TB NAS RAID that is in a server rack in a climate controlled environment.
Somewhere along in this process I have processed and uploaded some images to flickr, or maybe facebook, or even here to share, I sometimes send full rez, occasionally If I really like the image I will only upload a medium rez and save the high one for just me, I know selfish…) Then every so often (I should do this more often) I will upload my favorite images RAW and JPG to smugmug for archiving. I currently do not allow browsing of this library, but plan on doing so in the future.
So that’s it, yes I know it sounds like a job, and sometimes it feels like it, but It’s heartbreaking to have a hard-drive failure and lose precious memories, especially since I can’t remember shit these days (gotta work on that next)
Oh and it was fun to actually draw a picture, yeah I have skilz