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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

What’s In A Name?

Keeping Track • Essential Gear For Motion Capture

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The four-digit number identifies the specific image; I can have 9999 Anna's hummingbird images. But often I'll use a thousands designation to further classify the group of images. A 1000 grouping could mean the birds are on a nest, or 2000 might mean the images are in black-and-white. You can modify this in any way that suits you.

The single letter "G" after the number tells me that the image is a digital capture. An "S" designates that the image has been scanned from a slide or negative. A "C" shows that it was modified greatly in the computer, such as a stacked image, or a "P" to indicate a panorama. After this, I occasionally add an underline (_) and the letters "LR" if the image is a low-resolution version created for the web or a PowerPoint program.

Example 2: Oregon Landscape. If landscapes are your main interest, the system works well there, as well. The file name L-OR-BE-0002-G.TIF indicates the location of Oregon and the city of Bend. A 1000 series could mean all the images of downtown. Other first letter sets can designate "AL" for Africa Location or "SL" for South America Location.

The EXIF data for each digital capture already includes the capture date and camera used. I add information about the specific location, people in the image, model releases and agency status (submitted, accepted, rejected) or any use permissions or restrictions that apply.

The hardest part is assigning the file names consistently. I'm aided in this by keeping the digital files on a separate drive in folders identified by the first letter(s) in the file name and their meaning, such as "L-OR, Oregon landscapes." You can rename and code the file names, and add EXIF data, for all the images in an edited shoot within Adobe Bridge > Tools > Batch Rename. The EXIF data can be distributed across the shoot by selecting all the images in Adobe Bridge or Photoshop and then right-clicking on one image and selecting File Info. What you fill in for that file will attach to them all. Don't forget to add your copyright info!

Trying The Movies

Q My DSLR has video capability, and I'd like to give it a go to add to my repertoire. But all the examples I see from camera manufacturers make it seem like a big deal, with lots of expensive-looking equipment and people involved. Are there accessories and software that a mere mortal can afford and master to make video capture a fun and creative endeavor?
M. Johnson
Via email

A It doesn't really take a village to make a video, and in my seminars, I've been encouraging still photographers to give it a shot. In my opinion, you can have just as much fun capturing video as you do with stills, with results that entertain and inform your viewers in a whole new way. Today's DSLR video is very different in terms of quality and capture than your dad's old Super 8s and even recent camcorders. The ability to use an array of lenses increases the creativity factor in a big way. Editing software is easy to use, and the final product is quickly shared via social media, Vimeo and YouTube.

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