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Posted on Sep 19, 2013 in Efficientizing, Photography, Studio | 0 comments

Managing Duplicate Photo Copies in Lightroom

What do you use to manage your photo collection?

I used to go the simple Windows Explorer route and had a perfect way of naming each photo so they sorted correctly.  It worked fine …until Lightroom came along.  Suddenly a whole new whole opened up to me.  Photoshop and photo management in one?!   I was in heaven.  We have been using Lightroom for the last few years.   Now the problem is my husband and I both use it.  Sometimes we will import photos into Lightroom and forget to clear those photos out of the camera.   And someone would import it a second time in a different location.   This happens a few times a year, usually with those important photo collections from vacations we are afraid to lose (imagine 1000 images becomes 2000!).    Recently, it has gotten to a point of being very unmanageable.   There are double and even triple copies of photos everywhere!  Just imagine trying to delete those individually….and I actually did try it!!

As mentioned in my recent post, one of my current project is to finish all of our unfinished photo albums.   It’s going to be a long process for me since I tend to be very picky and want to include everything in our yearbooks.   Then, I came to this huge roadblock…. why do we have so many duplicates?!   Oh right…because…   So then, I prayed for a solution.   And a solution came to me in form of a Lightroom plugin called Duplicate Finder.  Thank you for thinking of my problem before I realized there’s one!   This was definitely money worth spending (about $15), that saved me many hours of hunting down the files.  It matches files based on a variety of data within the photo itself, not just the file name.  Phew~!

 

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This is what the plug-in looks like.  Very simple, you just have to check attributes that you would like to match and click ok.   They will go through your selected photos, find the duplicates, and put it into a collection for you to deal with.  Usually that means DELETE for me.  🙂

 

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Now, if there’s a tool like that to help me find duplicate things in life…and then organize them for me into neat folders.  I will buy that too!

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Posted on Aug 28, 2013 in DIY, Photography | 0 comments

The Photo Album Rush

I have set a goal for myself in the last few months to finish up all my unfinished Photo Albums.  My goal is to finish this before our baby arrives so that I can focus on documenting our memories of him/her.   I think our focus will shift a little bit once the baby arrives.  I have only done one yearbook for us, and that was 2009.  I was so hopeful that I will be diligent and create one each year.  What happened?  Well, you know…wedding albums, honeymoon albums, vacation photo albums and just chilling.  Yup, I have been busy and then very lazy.  Now, every free moment I get I am trying to organize and create our yearbooks.

My hubby loves the yearbooks.  Recently I came up with a brilliant idea, and I casually asked him what if I just do a summary photo album of our years together?  You know…like a “Best of” type thing.  He didn’t buy it.  He wanted one album for each year.  I think I’ve spoiled him with all our detailed albums.  Ha!  Well ok, I am up for the challenge…it will just take me a few hundred hours longer.

To make my life easier, I recently tried my hands on LumaPix Fotofusion. (Thanks to review from Photobook Girl’s site. Her site is a great resource for the most current photobook deals.)   A program that I will use to create all my albums from here on out.  It seems to have a little bit of a learning curve.  But, I think it will be worth it once I get the hang of it.   It will literally save me hundreds of hours.   And I won’t have to relearn to use every single service with their unique album creation programs out there.  I will do a review once I get the hang of using the program myself.  For now, I need to shuffle through the clutter of my millions of photos from the last 5+ years!

Here’s a peak of some of the albums I have created in the past.   Wish me luck as I dive into our millions of photos!!

 

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This is actually my latest creation…but also covers our oldest photos from when we first began dating.  I made this for my hubby as one of the presents for this birthday. 🙂   I used MyPublisher for this and took advantage of the coupon code from Photobook Girl.  And it was less than $50 (includes tax and shipping) for a 100 page photo album!!  Great deal!

 

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This was my first “yearbook” from 2009.   This one was ordered from Blurb.  The size is a small 8×8.   I’m doing major catching up now.  As you can see, my albums aren’t too much about style at this point as a “fit-every-meaningful-photo-as-I-can”.  I do have a pages sprinkled here and there with full page size photos.   The cover is actually a photo taken right after our engagement.  <3

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Albums I “usually* do not slack on are vacation albums.  This ons is from Blurb. The only reason is because right after our vacations, I’m always so eager to go through, sort, and edit the photos before sharing with friends and family.  But the time I have finish that task, putting together the albums isn’t that hard.  It’s usually the sorting and editing that takes the most time!

 

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Another vacation album.  This is my first soft cover album (this one is from Blurb).  I was actually pleasantly surprised by the outcome.  I probably will do more softcovers it the future for casual vacation albums like this one because the glossy photo cover is really pretty!

 

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Last but not least is my favorite album of all times, our wedding album.  This one I ordered from Photobook America.    It took me over a year to put this one together.  It has over a 1000 photos from our wedding in there because there are photos that I just don’t want to leave out.  After sorting through the professional photos and friends photos, I picked a handful of favorites for the main part of the album.   And the end, I have pages to put in smaller size photos that I did not want to leave out in a yearbook style and also “Behind the Scenes” section.  Love it so much. I sometimes just take it out to look at it myself and relive our wedding day. 🙂

 

These are just a few of my photo albums that I’ve put out.   As you can see, I order quite a few of my albums from Blurb.  That’s mainly because I was so familiar with using their album creation program.  Now that I’m going to start using Fotofusion, I am going to have more flexibility to trying out other photo album companies!  Very exciting indeed!!

Hope to finish  2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, and start on 2013 soon… Where can I buy more time??

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Posted on Aug 23, 2013 in DIY, Photography, Studio | 0 comments

DIY Home Photo Studio

Ever since I took photography class back in high school, I’ve always loved studio photography.   There’s so much you can control…the lighting, the background, and the whole environment.  Personally, I never thought I will be able to have my own photo studio since I do not have access to such equipment and space.  Recently, I had second thoughts about this and wanted to try and see if I can recreate one at home.  Turns out it was quite easy!  Now mind you, it is not anything fancy.   But, I can still call it my own little photo studio.

Materials:

  • A room with natural light
  • A camera
  • Optional:Tripod for camera
  • Hooks with removable tape
  • Binder clips (or any clips with hooks, I got mine from Ikea)
  • Fabric (About 2-3 feet….longer if you are taller than 5’3″.  Two feet should be sufficient for kids or babies.)
  • Iron (to iron out those wrinkly spots)
  • Optional: Umbrella lights
  • Optional:Masking tape

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Here are the hooks and removable tapes that I used.

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You can find similar type at your local Target, Walgreens, etc.

Direction:

Step 1: Find a wall where you can put up your fabric/canvas.   Next to a window where natural light can come in would be perfect.  Also,  keep in mind that there should be an open space in front of you to move around and take photos.

 

Step 2: Measure how high you want the fabric.  Make use there is enough fabric left on the ground for you to step on when taking photos.  As you can see I added one set of hooks on top and one in the middle.  The middle set is for photos where you can sit down or for photos of little ones.  That will allow you to maximize the use of your fabric.  

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Note: If your fabric is too short, feel free to add a solid color on the bottom

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Step 3: Place one hook up, clip your fabric, and hang it.    Pull the fabric so it is tight and not showing any wrinkles.   Place the other hook up.

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Step 4: If the fabric is wrinkly, iron it first.   If it’s still hanging loose, cheat and use masking tape to pull it tight and tape the fabric on the wall.   What you can crop out from the final photo won’t hurt you.  Cropping tool is one of my favorite tools! 😉

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All Set!

 

Here are some of the finished products from my studio!  And me in action. 🙂

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