Just recently I’ve been going through some of my earlier image archives, looking at files which in some cases haven’t been viewed for several years. It’s an interesting exercise on several levels. Firstly there is the possibility of finding a worthwhile but neglected picture, working on it and presenting it. Further it’s a chance to see how my approach to image processing and presentation has changed over the years and also to review how I’m managing my digital assets.
All my image organization, and a large part of my processing, is now done with Adobe Lightroom despite my misgivings about the company’s pricing policies. I’m finding that I’m now using Photoshop less for straight forward processing, going into it mostly if I wish to use Google’s image processing plugins (formerly Nik Software) or do some form of compositing. Looking back on my images from 2008, I see that many of the images I processed back then were via Photoshop and saved out as PSDs (Photoshop Documents) even for very simple processing. I’ve also refined my system as regards to file naming, sticking to a few simple points and being consistent. For example any image that does go through Photoshop so that I can use Silver Efex Pro will be saved as a TIFF with the file name given the suffix _SFX, images that go through Color Efex Pro will get the suffix _CFX. This means that if I wish to locate my monochrome images within a folder I can do so easily by a Meta data search for “_SFX”. If I could offer advice to others about getting the best value out of Lightroom as an organizational tool, it would be to think about just how you wish to name files, keyword them, etc, and then be consistent.
And so to today’s image which is part of my revised Tanzania collection. A Brown Snake Eagle photographed in Tarangire National Park, one of those neglected images to which I referred. Photographed from quite a distance with the 500mm telephoto lens as it was physically impossible to get closer, the bird is obviously perched in a favourite tree looking at the accumulated mess on the branch!