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how do you manage many photos

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My situation

  • Will buy A7Riii in a few days
  • own a MacBook with about 50gb space left
  • assuming that I fill a 64gb card quickly (700 shots a 80mb raw files?)


  • Do you import all photos to your computer or hard drive first to analyze and delete the bad ones?
  • are you also using a cloud to store your photos?
  • any recommendations for a smooth workflow with a possible walkthrough?

Much appreciated,

(I forgot my nickname with which I signed up here)

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I am a  working pro and I shoot anywhere from 500 to 3000 images per week. 

I download everything onto an external HD that is mirrored to another HD. When that fills up I get two more and repeat.

My actual backup and archiving is a little more involved but that is the basic outline.

No matter how many  images you delete, over time you will run out of space.

A good question to ask yourself is "What is so important on your computer that it must use up so much storage to leave you only 50GB?"

IMO off loading a lot of that data would be very helpful. If it is important data it is even more important to find backup locations for it.

Edited by markophoto

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I don't shoot near as many pictures as you, but here's what I do.

1. Import into Capture One directly SD card.

2. Do all of the culling.  Typically this results in 9 out of 10 images being deleted.

3. Export to a Dropbox folder only the images I want to share.

4. Format the SD card after putting it back into the camera.

This is working good for me.  I keep all of my photos on a beginner level NAS (WD 8TB MY Cloud EX2) which works great.

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Delete junk in-camera

Put the interim keepers on the computer and go through them and trash the final junk. Then do the PP. Although PP is required for some final decisions.

Now, I am years behind with my PP. But as long as I get it on the computer, it is like $ in the bank. I can PP anytime.

I also manage a large photo and film archive. So that is a  big reason I don't do better with my own work. The archive is mine too, just found work versus personally produced work.

Edited by slackercruster

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A7R3 is a good choice.  Since you will be purchasing in a few days you need to ensure that the camera has the latest updates in both camera firmware and Lens software because new versions have been recently released.  If you buy at a full service store, sweet talk them into doing it for you.  If not, then you'll have to go to the Sony support site and get the instructions and download 2 pieces of software.  If your MAC is 10.13 (High Sierra) or higher the first piece of software ("DriverLoader_1013") is required.  If your Mac is 10.12 or earlier, then only the second piece of software is required.  The instructions were hard for me to understand so I would suggest reading all the instructions with both pieces of software.  I had to read them multiple times.  

On to your question about a filing system.  I use Adobe Lightroom for basic file management and editing.  I also back up my RAW (in my case I use DNG files) in an external portable 5GB drive.  I also back up edited DNGs in the cloud.  I would recommend probably one more place.  

Now, about workflow - in LIghtRoom you can import all the photos from your SD Card.  Then you can use LightRoom to run thru them and pick the ones you want to keep.  I then edit and update all the metadata and tags, in order for searching.  LightRoom will offer A LOT of ways to organize your photos, so I'd recommend it as your main organizer.  When I'm done selecting and editing, I then export jpgs of the DNG files for showing and upload them into my site.  I back up everything including those I don't want to keep in my Google Drive (2TB for $10/mo).   Due to your limited space, after you finish this workflow, you could remove your photos  from LightRoom (and your computer).  You'll have to find a workflow that you are comfortable with, so it will be a LOT of trial an error.  

I hope this helps a bit.  There are certainly many, many people much more experienced and skilled than I to offer you advice.  I would suggest searching these questions on youTube.  You'll find many helpful videos.  Good Luck

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