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Author Topic: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC  (Read 965 times)

jlacasci

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Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« on: July 31, 2021, 03:42:02 pm »

I did a search and could not find an answer to this question.  I'm a long-time Bridge and Photoshop user and spent years photographing sport.  To be clear, I will describe my former workflow under that environment.  On the storage, top-level folder was Photos, next year, next level date-sport-teams.  Under date-sport-teams I would create NEG - for raw images - I would use star ratings to cull.  Any images from NEG that would be edited were moved to a Working folder under date-sport-teams.  This is where all edited versions live.  JPG was the final folder where ready-to-sell or print images lived for posting to my website.

A month ago I began using LRC and have been reviewed an Adobe LRC book and have taken a master class on Udemy on LRC and one on Workflow.  Finally my question. 

I'm using a similar folder structure, Photos, Years, Event-date    Under Event-date I will have NEG for raw images, and OUTPUT for printing (I don't publish any longer).  I feel I still should have a Working folder where I will copy the images to for editing.  What is confusing is that I "could" create a smart collection, any image from my NEG folder with more than 1 star could be added to a smart collection.  I could edit the images from the smart collection.  But, this seems to create a problem as the original raw images will not remain untouched.  I understand that the images aren't really touched and the editing data is just stored in the catalog,and also written to the XMP file as I have this option selected.

What is the opinion of this group on this?  Do most of you have a working folder and if you do, do you make a copy of the selected images for editing to this folder?

I appreciate your time.
Thank you,
Joe
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digitaldog

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2021, 04:10:53 pm »

The rule is, there are no rules. If you come up with a system that makes sense to you, perfect.
For example, for me personally, I see zero reason to create folders or worry about dates. I can't recall dates. I can recall locations. The images are all dated. But others are very good about recalling dates.
For printing, I use a color label for images that need to be printed (or are printed). That may work for some or not; it works for me.

The advise I have, other than do what seems logical and intuitive to you, is maybe get a copy of "The DAM Book" and read it. It has a lot of interesting suggestions you may find useful. It is all about getting your mind to work on a system that works for you. Kind of like your own filing system of papers or other computer files. If I came over and organized this for you, that system might work for awhile or fail because we simply don't work the same way.
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Jeffrey Saldinger

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2021, 05:41:52 pm »

Joe, perhaps I’m not fully following your workflow, but where you say “But, this seems to create a problem as the original raw images will not remain untouched,” it’s not clear to me why that is a problem unless you want to always have available for reference right there in your catalog an undeveloped raw file. In my workflow, I’ll work on the raw file and thereafter, in most cases, never refer again to what it looked like “out of the camera.” If for some reason I want to see it in that original state, I can just make a virtual copy of whatever state the raw file is in at any point, and then fully reset that virtual copy. Then I have the virtual copy available for reference (or for a different approach to development) alongside the raw file in its current, developed state.

As for separate folders for your raw files and your output files, in my Lightroom catalog I have found it simplest in most cases to have all the files related to a given raw file in the same folder -- there are some exceptions that are, as Andrew alludes to, logical and useful for me but might not be for anyone else.

It seems that some reliance on keywords, smart collections, and develop module history states will help as you go forward.

My files are named only by the date taken and the image file number assigned by the camera. Most of my folders are named only by the date on which I imported the images from my card.

The videos of Tim Grey, available on Lynda.com or through his own website, have been useful to me from time to time and might be to you, too.
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JRSmit

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2021, 04:19:43 am »

Like Andrew said, get a copy of the dam book.
Also ask yourself a question: what if a file is moved from its folder with a meaningful name to another folder, how much value has the name of the original folder?

Bottom line: the files are your assets, the primary purpose of its name is to make it unique within your ‘space’.
As you need to store them, device a folder structure, with as primary purpose physical storage.
Keep the physical structure and naming intact, at all times.

All other structures based on: dates, camera, keywords, etc are all metadata already present in the file, and can be used for logical structures.
This is where LR excels, you need one physical structure, and on top you can create whatever permanent or temporal logical structure you need.
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PeterAit

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2021, 09:30:16 am »

I agree that making extra folders is a bad idea and sort of defeats the premise of LR. With color labels, ratings, keywords, filters, flags, and collections  you can impose any sort of logical order--or orders--you need without actually moving files between folders.
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mcbroomf

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2021, 02:13:31 pm »

  I could edit the images from the smart collection.  But, this seems to create a problem as the original raw images will not remain untouched. 


This isn't true unless you use the option to create Virtual Images in your collection.  As long as you don't do that any change made to a file in the collection is made in the "main" folder (Neg in your case).
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digitaldog

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2021, 02:14:47 pm »

This isn't true unless you use the option to create Virtual Images in your collection.  As long as you don't do that any change made to a file in the collection is made in the "main" folder (Neg in your case).
And a VC can become a real existing document outside the DAM; export as DNG.
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BobShaw

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2021, 07:22:31 pm »

I suggest that you look at the Chase Jarvis Workflow
https://www.chasejarvis.com/blog/workflow-and-backup-for-photo-video/

It is a bit old' but I have used this for over 10 years.
Essentially your Image folder has three folders in it.
They are Originals, straight out of camera and never changed, Live, anything that has been worked on, and Final, completed to the customer.

In each folder i have the year taken, 2021.
In that I have a folder for the day taken 2021-08-02_FirstImageInTheCard

I never import any images into any catalogue so they can be used by multiple programmes

Timemachine backs upeverything. Never use a catalogue backup.
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fdisilvestro

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2021, 10:30:27 pm »

I never import any images into any catalogue so they can be used by multiple programmes

Importing an image into a catalogue does not prevent to use it in other programs and/or importing it into other catalogues

BobShaw

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2021, 10:40:34 pm »

Importing an image into a catalogue does not prevent to use it in other programs and/or importing it into other catalogues
I possibly used the wrong word. It depends if the catalogue "references" the image and leaves it in the original files location (good) , or moves the file to the catalogue (bad).
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digitaldog

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2021, 11:11:12 pm »

I possibly used the wrong word. It depends if the catalogue "references" the image and leaves it in the original files location (good) , or moves the file to the catalogue (bad).
LR doesn't move anything that you don't ask it to move. It simply references the location of the files you import. IF you move them from outside LR (Finder), you really screw the pooch for LR; it has no idea what you did outside it, you get the dreaded ? asking: show me where the files are.
If you move them (or rename them, or delete them etc) from inside LR, it does what YOU ask.
There are NO images in the catalog! Well there are 'metadata' like images we call Virtual Copies, hence my post about exporting them as actual files. But with every VC, there is a Master somewhere on your HD that LR is cataloging it's actual location. 
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fdisilvestro

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2021, 11:32:54 pm »

I guess that Bob was thinking about an option in Capture one to "Move the files into the catalog", which does not really store the images inside the catalogue (the sqlite database) but inside the folder structure where the catalogue is.

In the case of OSX, this folder structure is just seen as  one item (package, I believe) while in windows there is just a folder structure.
It is not a friendly folder structure, and I personally do not recommend this option in C1 (sessions are much better if you want to keep all files in one location).


digitaldog

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #12 on: August 01, 2021, 11:38:31 pm »

I guess that Bob was thinking about an option in Capture one to "Move the files into the catalog", which does not really store the images inside the catalogue (the sqlite database) but inside the folder structure where the catalogue is.
Can't comment nor use C1.
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PeterAit

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Re: Is it a best practice to create a "working" folder in LRC
« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2021, 03:45:02 pm »


I could edit the images from the smart collection.  But, this seems to create a problem as the original raw images will not remain untouched. 

No -- raw files ALWAYS remain untouched, that's at the heart of the way LR works.
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