Monday, April 30, 2012

Thought Of The Day: Photography Work Flow

When you've captured over 1,000 images in a short period of time, the only way to get through the post-processing is with a solid work flow.

First, be a harsh critic. If an image doesn't grab you right away, delete it. Someone said that if an image doesn't look good as a thumbnail, it won't look good large, so don't waste your time with it. That may be extreme, but you can't post-process all 1,000 images (that would take a long, long time that most people don't have), so you have to draw the line somewhere.

Side point: don't carelessly snap away. Don't waste your time by opening the shutter too often. Put a little more thought into each image, and you'll have fewer to delete later.

Second, prioritize which images should be post-processed first. If someone is paying you or if you will earn money from a photograph, that's where you should start. Save the other images for when you have some extra free time.

Side point: organize your images in a logical way. Don't store them all in one folder. Don't forget to back everything up in case the unthinkable happens.

Third, post-process quickly. I'm not a fan of batch editing, because each image deserves it's own unique adjustments. Batch editing does speed up the process, though, and can help you if you need to be done yesterday. If you have a lot of post-processing to do, this is not the time to experiment with software--stick to what you know works. Clean up the photographs, but don't attempt to reinvent the images.

Side point: if you get the images correct in the field, you'll have less to do in post-processing. Make sure all of the settings are as you want them. A few seconds of extra effort before opening the shutter can save a few minutes in front of a computer later.

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