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Author Topic: Wedding Workflow  (Read 31780 times)
bslanger
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« on: April 13, 2006, 08:13:10 PM »

Anyone have a good wedding workflow going? I've just attended the workshops, and read the book, but trying to implement the actual workings of things
has been turning out to be, well, not good, and I'm back to my original workflow.  
« Last Edit: April 16, 2006, 10:56:57 AM by peterkrogh » Logged
rskoss
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« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2006, 01:59:41 AM »

Anyone have a good wedding workflow going? I've just attended the workshops, and read the book, but trying to implement the actual workings of things
has been turning out to be, well, not good, and I'm back to my original workflow. 

You might get better/more responses if you asked a more specific question. At which step in the workflow are you having trouble and what is the nature of your trouble.

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peterkrogh
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« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2006, 10:59:36 AM »

Brian,
Where does it break for you? 
Peter
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Sean Slavin
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« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2006, 05:45:20 PM »

Anyone have a good wedding workflow going?

I have just migrated my business to digital. Last weekend was my first all digital wedding. I too have questions on the workflow as Peter's book left me partially confused on a few things. This isn't intended to be a thread hijack but it's still on topic, so here goes.

The first part of Peter's process concerning originals makes perfect sense to me. First thing I do is download each 4gb card to it's own Raw folder on my "Originals" drive. I've kept the structure the same as described in the book so that each Raw folder fits on it own DVD. However, I mark them by the creation date not the date of the last image added.

I then go into Bridge to add my copyright info and keywords.

From there, I move onto Lightroom. Yes, I know it's still a beta but it works for me on cataloging, ranking and RAW processing. It's a very intuitive app for me and it is helping me quite a bit on getting the hang of the whole digital processing step.

Now this is where it kind of breaks for me. I understand the meaning behind derivatives but I'm not sure how to make this a seamless step. Right now, I am exporting full res TIFF files out of Lightroom and they are going into an Event->Client folder structure. I'd like to make this more like Peter's "Derivative" drive but the structure doesn't make sense in my head. From the wedding last weekend, I exported 740 images that will make the proof book. They added up to slightly over 26gb. If I were to use the derivative structure, would I have 7 DRV folders for that one event? When I convert the TIFFs to 4x6x300 JPEGS for prints, where would I store those? In more DRV folders? Do I even need to keep the TIFFs or can I just export those to a temp location until I make the jpegs? I do make final adjustments (convert to b/w, sharpen, etc) on them in Photoshop before saving them as jpegs.

Currently, I have an Events folder. Underneath that, I have folders for types of events, Weddings, Corporate, etc. Below those I have clients. In the client folder, I have folders for TIFFs, JPEGs and Master PSD files. This is bad juju for easy, systematic backups I know and I do recognize that it needs fixing.

I suppose things could become more streamlined with future versions of Lightroom. If it allowed for exporting of high res jpegs, I wouldn't need the TIFF files for proof prints at all. The jpegs would then fit nicely in the derivative structure.

Once I have the proof jpegs, those get burned to 2 CDs. One goes in my backup file in a fireproof safe and the other goes into the client's file where it sits with the DVDs of the original RAW files from their event.

I do more than just weddings so I need a workflow that can handle all types: corporate, stock, advertising, editorial, etc. I like Peter's ideas and the structure makes a lot of sense. I am just having trouble getting my head around actually implementing it.

Sean
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2006, 06:24:31 PM »

Sean,
Two things.  First,
NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
Just kidding (sort of). I think it's a bad idea to put Lightroom into real production right now.  It's not finished, stuff will change, and you open yourself to a loss of work.

Second, why are you making all those TIFFs?  Are you bringing them through Photoshop and editing them further, like layering or some other sophisticated Photoshop work?  Why don't you just export JPEG files?
Peter
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Sean Slavin
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« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2006, 09:05:03 PM »

Haha! I know where you are coming from but do you think that much will change between and the final release? Yes, there is a lot of work to be done but I believe it would be dangerous, not to mention foolhardy, on Adobe's part to release a final version that didn't understand the same file structure as the public betas. As I mentioned earlier, I'm really only using it for catalog, ranking and the RAW processing and from my undrestanding it shares the same code base as ACR which is already a solid product. I have no need for the Print or Slideshow modules right now although I do love how easy it is to set up a contact sheet.

To answer your second part, I'm not really sure. Every time I've tried to export a JPEG, even at 12 quality, it still comes out at 72dpi. When I export the TIFFs, I get them at 240. They get a bit of further tweaking in PS (highlights, shadows, b&w conversion and sharpening), then resized to 4x6 at 300dpi. Is there a way to export a JPEG from Lightroom at 300dpi? If I could do that, then I think they would fit in on a Derivative drive, right?
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bslanger
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« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2006, 07:42:52 PM »

It does seem everyone needs to kind of make their own custom blend of a workflow.  I've been fiddling and re-creating mine, and in taking notes, it's about 4 single spaced pages of a workflow!  That includes going from the cards, through folders 1-4, through iview, and even slideshows.  I could post part or all of that for kicks.  I'm sure there are other ways to do things, but in order to get things going, it looks like it might work for now.
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2006, 05:36:45 AM »

Brian,
I'd suggest that you give the workflow a trial first before you post it for others.  Unless, of course, you are looking for feedback on your proposed methodology.
Peter
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bslanger
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« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2006, 04:45:18 PM »

Nope, definitely would not post my temporary workflow as ANY kind of model, just thought it might be some good snooze material for any insomniacs as the thing is long, and maybe someone could show me the holes in it, but I will work and test it out before even thinking of posting it, even for review or feedback.   I do have some questions about the Pictage/ Derivatives iview workflow that I will post later.  I'm good all the way through folder four for the originals, but getting the files converted and stored in iveiw could use some tweaking.
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AndyT
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« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2006, 06:05:15 PM »

To answer your second part, I'm not really sure. Every time I've tried to export a JPEG, even at 12 quality, it still comes out at 72dpi. When I export the TIFFs, I get them at 240. They get a bit of further tweaking in PS (highlights, shadows, b&w conversion and sharpening), then resized to 4x6 at 300dpi. Is there a way to export a JPEG from Lightroom at 300dpi? If I could do that, then I think they would fit in on a Derivative drive, right?


Sean, you have the ppi stuff mixed up.  All that matters are the actual image dimensions of the files your produce.  Don't worry about the ppi until you need to resize your images - then use it as a guide to the print definition that you require.

e.g. Photo @ 1800 x 1200 @ 300ppi will print a 6" x 4" photo at 300ppi.
      Photo @ 1800 x 1200 @ 150ppi will print a 12" x 8" photo at 150ppi.

But the starting files are absolutely identical.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2006, 06:09:19 PM by AndyT » Logged
AndyT
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« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2006, 06:44:08 PM »

I have a wedding workflow based on myself and my partner shooting.  It's a little more involved because we like to define exactly who took what and the only way of knowing this (considering that we use the same types of cameras) is by knowing which CF card belongs to which person Smiley

Here's how it works:

We shoot RAW (Canon 5Ds)  Canon don't let you change the prefix of their filenames but there's a workaround.  One set of cameras is set to shoot sRGB, the other Adobe RGB.  The colour space is entirely irrelevant at the shooting stage if you shoot RAW BUT the cameras files are prefixed differently:

sRGB: IMG
aRGB: _MG

When the wedding is done - the CF cards are downloaded using ImageIngester on to our G5.  As well as having two hard drives in the G5, I also have an inexpensive Firewire HD which is used for backups.  ImageIngester downloads, creates DNGs, adds a metadata template with all the copyright info and creates a copy of the files on two different drives.  In the Bridge, we sort by filename initially so that we can quickly add the photographers name to the metadata.  With that done, sort by capture Date and begin to plough through the files.

1.  Very briefly, scroll through the thumbnails/previews and mark for deletion anything that is rubbish, accidental, obviously of no use etc.  We do quite a hard edit at this stage as we don't intend to deliver more than 250 files.  Once done, select and delete the marked files.

2.  Rename now according to one of Peter's suggestions.  We use "Studioname_YYMMDD_001.DNG"

3.  Add basic keywords.  I use Bridge temporary sets for this - it's just simple stuff (client name, location, wedding etc.)

4.  Select all files and add ACR defaults.  (I created my own default settings as a basic starting point to work the RAWs from).

5.  Using ACR, I review and adjust each RAW as necessary.  At this point I may mark further files for deletion - if they don't look good enough to continue with.

6.  Batch RAWs to JPG (PS Image Processor)

7.  Put DNGs away into the Originals Archive Bucket.


We now have keyworded and adjusted JPGs to work with.


8.  Process each JPG that requires it; concentrating on global adjustments before retouching etc.  At this stage we don't crop anything!

9.  Put a copy of the processed JPGs into Derivatives bucket.

10.  Now we run through them again to crop.

11.  I rate all cropped files with a star to help sort them later in iView MP.

12.  Rename all cropped JPGs with a C suffix so that they don't conflict with the uncropped versions in the derivatives bucket.

13.  Run rank and file to copy the star rating into the keyword metadata.

14.  Copy finished JPGs to Derivatives.


It's hard to explain exactly how we ended up with this system but it works well for us and it solves a couple of problems that have constantly plagued us in the past.  We have to use the JPG workflow as NONE of our files are sold without retouching in some way.  Even those that possibly could be, are thrown in the pot purely to keep them all together.  We also offer differing sizes of reprints.  For that purpose, we keep the uncropped JPGs so that in the event of an order for say a 10 x 8, we don't have to crop an already-cropped file further - or worse still, go back to the DNG and reprocess the JPG and hope we can make it look the same as the 12 x 8 they just ordered of the same print!  That has happened in the past and it's not fun Smiley

I'd love to be able to shorten this further, but my aim is to do the work once and then be able to deal with clients' orders quickly without having to revist photoshop much - if at all.  If I refused to offer different print crops, it would be very much simpler and quicker, but the financial penalties of doing so don't make it viable at the moment.

If that's of any use or if anyone has any comments/ideas, I'd love to hear them!

Ciao
Andy
« Last Edit: May 11, 2006, 06:47:21 PM by AndyT » Logged
peterkrogh
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« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2006, 08:45:45 PM »

Andy,
You need to do much more work to the DNG files before you batch out the JPEGs.  Maybe Brian *will* post his workflow, since I think he has a pretty efficient system to do this.

I like the color space renaming trick to tell photographers apart - good use of the tools at hand.

Peter
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AndyT
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« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2006, 12:36:32 AM »

Do you have anything particular in mind Peter?  We've tried and tried but the RAW tools just don't let us get anywhere close to our "processed" jpg look - much of which is very quickly achieved with actions.  e.g. blurred overlay saturation layers, vignettes, dodging & burning.  Of course retouching (faces etc., is not something we want to repeat either).

I work on the theory that each time I have to open a file costs me valuable time.  Just to open 200 files in Photoshop, look at each one very very briefly and close it down takes a minimum of 10 seconds - that's 33 minutes gone of my day without even adjusting anything.  To reduce this to an absolute minimum of button pressing and time selecting items in menus, I absolutely swear by Mike Dickson's Autoloader script;  it's linked below.  At the moment, I'm having to do this twice just at the JPG stage, which is frustraiting but I can't find another way of managing different crop requests.  I only deliver "cropped & processed" proofs - as otherwise, clients find it hard to imagine how the image may look - especially if you've changed it significantly during cropping.  I aim to present it in the best possible light, which enhances the chance of sale.  Unfortunately, I have to keep the original uncropped (but processed) JPG to cope with the 10x8 scenario mentioned above.  I'd love to move away from 10x8s and stick with a 4:3 ratio print, but everytime we've tried - we've lost sales.  People just can't seem to find decent frames in the high street shops for 12x9 etc.  Undecided

Autoloader: http://www.photosforlife.ca/scripts/AutoLoader/
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alanackoff
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« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2006, 01:02:42 PM »

IView has a PDF download suggesting a workflow using iView and Capture One. I've found it to be a pretty good starting place for my wedding workflow. Once I eliminate the rejects then I adjust, crop, and batch convert with C1 and export as TIFFs which show up in iView thanks to automatic folder watching. At this stage I assign metadata and build virtual catalogues for groups of images that will need a special treatment of some kind (ie sepia toning) When all is said and done, then I use Peter's bucket method to archive my CRW and final TIFF files on recordable media and I keep my complete working files on a hard drive.

The major drawback is that since there is nothing like "Versions" in Aperture, I end up with multiple folders of TIFF files for B&W conversions, noise reduction, color correction, etc. Fortunately disc storage is pretty cheap this days. I may eventually throw out my working files since my final TIFFs are 16 bit Prophoto RGB. I used to work in a recording studio so I think of the TIFFs as my final mix. Always keep your original tracks and your final mix. The final mix goes to a mastering lab and comes back "mastered". As technology improves there may be reasons to "digitally remaster" your final mix or even "remix" from the original studio tracks.

There are at least 5 ways to do everything on computer. Unfortunately the only way to find out what works best for you is to try it. At this stage of the game, shooting raw for weddings is a bit like swimming in gasoline, but it will get better. You might check over on the DWF (digital wedding forums) for other workflow ideas.

Alan
« Last Edit: June 10, 2006, 01:14:16 PM by alanackoff » Logged
Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2006, 09:02:20 PM »

To reduce this to an absolute minimum of button pressing and time selecting items in menus, I absolutely swear by Mike Dickson's Autoloader script;  it's linked below.

Autoloader: http://www.photosforlife.ca/scripts/AutoLoader/

Andy, are you using version 1 or 2 of AutoLoader?  I would want to 'autoload' a NEF and save it as a jpg in a different folder.  Will it do that?
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