Wednesday, September 06, 2006

File storage and workflow

I have an external 200Gb harddisk as my primary storage. It is partitioned into three drives "RAW" 20Gb, "PSD" 160Gb, and "JPEG" 20Gb. The sizes are different because an average CR2 file (20D RAW) is about 8MB and after post processing in photoshop (PS), using layers, one can obtain a 24-100 MB file in PSD format. After merging the layers this is a 5-8 MB JPEG.

Since post processing can take anywhere from 10 sec to infinity depending on the photo and what you are trying to accomplish I backup both the RAW and the PSD to DVD. I then store my DVDs at work so should I get robbed or my house burns down I still have a copy.

My workflow is as follows:
  1. Make a dir, named with date, on the RAW drive and dump the CF to this dir.
  2. Use the canon utility viewer to make a first run through to remove non-keepers.
  3. Pull all (usually 15 at a time) RAW files into PS using camera RAW. In camera RAW I make WB, shadow and exposure changes.
  4. Batch save PSD files to new dir, named as date, on PSD drive.
  5. Edit photos, curves, saturation, etc
  6. Make final decision on which to keep.
  7. Batch convert/save PSD files to JPEG files in new dir, named as date, on the JPEG drive.

Note: I no longer use camera RAW because of improvements in Canon's DPP (Digital professional pro) software. So depending on the photo, step 5 is completed in DPP and if necessary exported as a TiFF for futher editing in PS .


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