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06-07-2016, 12:19 PM   #1
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What is your workflow& software used for digital processing?

Am looking around for new ideas and software to ease or streamline the digital processing workflow, as i feel that atm i use a not so optimal setup. I do shoot a mix of raw and jpeg, but feel I should do more raw. At the moment I have a K5 but think I will buy a K1 later this year.

My workflow is as follows:

1. Downloading images per shooting session to a folder ordered by date plus session name.

2. Browsing images and deleting the ones I dont want. Using either faststone image viewer, windows photo viewer or now experimenting with Adobe Bridge.

Here I need to probably assign keywords with rating to later find images easier. I have images since my old K100 from 2006 that I need to better organize, but whats the easiest way to go?

3. I edit the images then in Lightroom (I use an old version 2.2) or photoshop elements 11. I know all old stuff thats in part why I ask what best to use these days. Also dont want to get hooked on Adobe CC if not necessary.

Any tips on your workflow & software used is welcomed. Thx in advance!


Last edited by Urs; 06-07-2016 at 03:40 PM.
06-07-2016, 12:25 PM   #2
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In essence I do more or less the same, be it purely with open source alternatives. For downloading I use Damon Lynch's Rapid Photo Downloader (Rapid Photo Downloader) which also creates folders based on camera-model name contained in the exif data of the files on the card and ensures file verification after copy (and a whole lot more than that, really).

(Geo)Tagging and starring is done with Digikam, raw conversion with UFRw/ImageMagick and PP with either Digikam's Showfoto editor or Gimp.
06-07-2016, 01:34 PM   #3
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LR could take care of a lot of what you are trying to do, especially the cataloging (keywording, etc). I think it integrates everything together a bit better than others, if that is important to you. Otherwise, Bridge or FastStone might give you similar functionality but less full featured. They are basically just browsers while LR is more about image management.

Now I don't blame you for wanting to avoid CC, and I'm not going to suggest going into it. You could just upgrade yourself to LR 5 or LR 6 (not sure how easy LR 6 is to find as Adobe tends to hide the product page for LR 6 since they want you to get CC).

Alternatively, you could use software like DarkTable (if you have a Mac or Linux) or go to software like ACDSee (similar to LR) or just pick up a strict cataloging software like IMatch for keywording.

My workflow:

1. Use BreezeSystems Downloader Pro to put files onto my computer
2. Use IMatch to browse, cull, and keyword (catalog) my photos
3. Process photos using LR, DxO 10, LightZone, or RawTherapee.
06-07-2016, 03:29 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Urs Quote
Am looking around for new ideas and software to eas or streamline the digital processing workflow, as i feel that atm i use a not so optimal setup. I do shoot a mix of raw and jpeg, but feel I should do more raw. At the moment I have a K5 but think I will buy a K1 later this year.

My workflow is as follows:

1. Downloading images per shooting session to a folder ordered by date plus session name.

2. Browsing images and deleting the ones I dont want. Using either faststone image viewer, windows photo viewer or now experimenting with Adobe Bridge.

Here I need to probably assign keywords with rating to later find images easier. I have images since my old K100 from 2006 that I need to better organize, but whats the easiest way to go?

3. I edit the images then in Lightroom (I use an old version 2.2) or photoshop elements 11. I know all old stuff thats in part why I ask what best to use these days. Also dont want to get hooked on Adobe CC if not necessary.

Any tips on your workflow & software used is welcomed. Thx in advance!
G'Day,

I have chosen to avoid the CC path too, and I assume that at some point in the future the support to LR6 and Photoshop CS6 will cease.

A number of years ago I came across the onOne Photo suite and have retained the use of that system as it improved. I originally was after Genuine Fractals for enlarging of images and next thing I'm buying something that's a lot more than a photo enlarger. I don't use it for everything, though the program is able to be used as a standalone or as a plug-in to Lightroom and Photoshop.

So, as I already had Lightroom and Photoshop I still use these but have chosen to add onOne Photo 10 into my workflow as it is quick and flexible providing very good tone and colour controls with very handy masking tools. Later this year onOne will have their own Raw program too, so it will be interesting to see how this will go next to Lightroom. And ironically they have a special deal for both programs that expires soon, the details are here: https://www.on1.com/landing/announcing-photo10-5-raw/?

Image capture:

K-1, DNG RAW and Adobe RGB

My Workflow:

I could import using Photo 10 as it's browse app is able to filter images using keywords star ratings etc
but I still use the LR6 import dialogue as I started this workflow back when I bought LR2. I use it to select the file location, sub folder naming and file naming as well as keywording. I browse the images in the LR6 library and select the images to be processed from there. Any deleting of images is done in LR6 so the Lightroom catalogues are correct. This also applies if I want to relocate images around hard drives, it is all done in LR6 to maintain catalogue integrity.

The initial processing in LR6 is to ensure the horizon is straight, any dust spots are removed and the white and black points are set to maximise the use of the cameras dynamic range. I might use the colour channels to adjust the image if needed. The workflow from here will depend upon any lens issues or noise. If there is any CA or purple fringing I will use LR6 to resolve it. If there is a lens profile installed I will use this. If there is noise I will apply noise reduction.

Processing:

I continue the edit in Photo 10 and may use the enhance tool or just use Effects. There is a layer tool as well however as you can swap between these it doesn't matter which one I start with. The process here is tones, colour, sharpening and maybe a vignette. I may play with some of the other filters if the image seems to work with it that could include B&W, cross processing, split tones, textures or a combination of these. There's a lot to choose from, all can be adjusted to my tastes and masked out if I want. For certain workflows in Photo 10 I will save it as a preset for future use. Once I'm done here I save and return to LR6.

Fine details and export:

Typically from here I will go to Photoshop as I prefer to export from Photoshop. This tool is still the best and most refined in its application. The content aware tool is handy and the control over sharpening might be required here as well. I 'save a's to retain the large file, and make a copy for resizing and saving as SRGB for posting to the interwebs.

If an image needs little more than some sharpening and exporting I might do it all in LR6 or Photo 10. Currently my workflow is evolving as I have added to the workflow but not necessarily subtracted therefore I would like to streamline it more hence my focus on the Photo 10 suite as it seems to be saving me lots of time and is constantly improving. I also stopped learning about Photoshop though it's such a great tool I'd not give up on it completely.

Hope this is what you were seeking.

Tas


Last edited by Tas; 06-07-2016 at 04:50 PM.
06-07-2016, 04:56 PM   #5
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Just curious, what is use of a downloading software or importer ?
My own workflow is pretty simple-
I copy the folders from my sd card to my pc using the windows explorer. All master raw files stored in one place.
I import that folders to Lightroom 6, develop and export as required.
I keep duplicate copies of the master Raw files at a hard disk.
06-07-2016, 06:47 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Urnamaster13 Quote
My own workflow is pretty simple-
My choice is pretty similar. I am a huge fan of simplifying and optimizing. I've been experimenting a bit with the trials of Fast Picture Viewer and Photo Mechanic, Fast Stone, etc. etc. I like simplicity and speed of Fast Picture Viewer the best. I don't want to dupicate features all that much. The FPV can be used for browsing images really fast and can be used for rating images as well as a few other things. I may not use this in my regular workflow, but have used FPV off and on over the years (non pro) simply for blazing through images with the scroll wheel in full screen.

I'll likely stick to direct import into LR CC
06-08-2016, 05:31 AM   #7
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I download the photos from the SD card onto my hard drive into a folder that has a date followed by a name. Since I shoot RAW+, I place the jpegs into that folder & create another folder inside called DNG & place the raw files in there.

I browse the jpegs with the Windows Photo Viewer or Image Viewer on Debian & only develop the RAW files that I like and/or plan on doing large prints of. I use RawTherapee for that, but I've also been experimenting with DXO 9 on Windows lately.

That's it.
06-08-2016, 11:06 AM   #8
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Thanks everybody for your input! Lots to check out and rethink the way I do things.

06-09-2016, 02:02 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Urnamaster13 Quote
Just curious, what is use of a downloading software or importer ?
My own workflow is pretty simple-
I copy the folders from my sd card to my pc using the windows explorer. All master raw files stored in one place.
I import that folders to Lightroom 6, develop and export as required.
I keep duplicate copies of the master Raw files at a hard disk.
I use a downloader (independent of LR and my catalogging software, IMatch) mostly because it allows me to automate the location where folders go and how files are named to a level of detail that LR can't match. I occasionally shoot with 2 to 3 cameras while out and about, and the downloader allows me to name all the photos using a consistent framework so that all the photos from a shoot are filed away and integrated by date regardless of the body used.

I think the need depends on the workflow. While I rely on a DAM and even LR to provide catalog management, I recognize that my current software of choice may not be there in the future. Using a downloader allows me to somewhat make my catalog future proof in that the file naming and folders will say a lot about my images.
06-09-2016, 03:08 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by emalvick Quote
I use a downloader (independent of LR and my catalogging software, IMatch) mostly because it allows me to automate the location where folders go and how files are named to a level of detail that LR can't match. I occasionally shoot with 2 to 3 cameras while out and about, and the downloader allows me to name all the photos using a consistent framework so that all the photos from a shoot are filed away and integrated by date regardless of the body used.

I think the need depends on the workflow. While I rely on a DAM and even LR to provide catalog management, I recognize that my current software of choice may not be there in the future. Using a downloader allows me to somewhat make my catalog future proof in that the file naming and folders will say a lot about my images.
Wow, those could have been my exact words. Even the use of multiple cameras and the need to have them utomatically stored away by camera-model. I have the ISO picked from the exif and added to the filename as well to make it easy later on to decide which files may need a run through NeatImage for nr.

So my downloading software automatically creates any required folders and copies/renames the files so the path ends up looking like this:
/Photos/2016-K-5/160314-Brussels/CMG18498-Brussels-ISO100.JPG and I only supply a job name, in this case "Brussels". Some tags are also added to the exif during the copy across as well as copyright info.
06-10-2016, 12:59 PM   #11
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There are a bazillion ways to do it. I happen to like Lr/Ps quite a bit, but YMMV.

But I think that two things help immensely in organizing.

First is figuring out how you like to find images. That determines what you do to set that up, not the other way round. Directories and such are nice, but extremely limiting and inflexible, dependent in some cases on the filesystem, more prone to error, not as universal as they could be, etc etc. That's why we have photo metadata: it's standard, runs across platforms and filesystems, is universal, highly flexible, and easy to use. That would be my preference for finding stuff: keywords, captions, titles, exif data, etc etc. Works even in Explorer.

Second is automating or at least streamlining the process of getting from camera/card to computer. If you do stuff then it'll get done. Otherwise, let's face it, we'll neglect it. The king of this is probably Photo Mechanic, created for someone shooting sports on a sideline who has to get images, complete with all the caption info, etc, to their boss within minutes after the match ended. And it does that.

But if you don't wanna spring for that, or feel it's overkill, there are other ingesters/cullers that work well. I'd suggest FastRawViewer for anyone that does raw since it can show better previews than what you get from the embedded ones in Pentax DNGs, and hence can more effectively cull, especially if you push your raw images. And it can do some basic other stuff. And it's like $15US. For keywording I like XnviewMP since it does hierarchical keywords, and is free. You can also get Adobe Bridge even if you don't subscribe to the CC plan; it can do keyword templates and lots of sorting, moving and renaming. For free.
06-15-2016, 09:12 AM   #12
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Update: I finally updated my lightroom version 2 to the new standalone version 6, now that is like night and day. Incredible the improvements in the new version, in just about all levels. I just wish I did that sooner.
06-16-2016, 10:31 AM   #13
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I'm glad I found this thread. PentaxForums is an amazingly helpful resource!

I use a KS2, shooting only RAW or RAW+. I'm a long-time Photoshop user but for very specific tasks related to large-format imaging and reproduction. Using it in a photo-processing workflow is new to me and I've been stumbling along making it work. I ready for a change to a proper workflow.

I don't have a spare PS6 license so one way or another I've got to add something. My thought is to use a standalone Lightroom 6 for previewing/trashing/initial cataloging, then open the pertinent RAW files in DxO OpticsPro 11 Elite for the processing as I think the results should be a bit better than LR, especially the noise reduction at higher ISO's. From there back to Lightroom ,and perhaps Nik if black and white, for any further enhancements and saving.

Does the LR to OpticsPro to LR make sense or am I overcomplicating it? I just now began working in OpticsPro, am getting somewhat comfortable with Nik and its various plug-ins, and have zero experience with Lightroom. My current workflow had been browse with Bridge and preview with the magnifier, open the DNG if it's worthy with Photoshop and minimal adjustments to vibrance and such, then mostly Nik tools before saving as a JPEG.

Last edited by gatorguy; 06-16-2016 at 11:30 AM.
06-16-2016, 01:22 PM   #14
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LR has steadily improved. I use it LR6, non-CC, to upload, catalog and edit. Some images I tweak in NIK Viveza II for the ability to select image areas for adjustment and the lower added contrast of NIK's structure slider vs. LR's clarity.
06-16-2016, 05:58 PM   #15
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I shoot RAW+JPEG, and sorting for me happens with Picasa Editor. Candidate RAW files will be marked with a star, and moved to a Keeper folder that gets backed up to the OneDrive cloud. Some less interesting shots will have their JPEGs dropped straight into Google Drive as finished, without any PP.

The keepers then get brought into Lightroom CC, and by plugin are often sent to the Nik Collection, and rarely, Photoshop CC.

The final export goes into Google Drive.
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