Import workflow question

May 17, 2020
8
1
Excuse me for asking such a basic question, but what are the recommended methods of importing photos from the memory card to the computer?

I started back in 2004 with Zoombrowser and moved to Imagebrowser. Was in the USMC and with a point and shoot back then. Stayed with it because, well it was "good enough".

Now, I have a 5div and am rebuilding my computer with new SSDs and a fresh Windows install and the new machine doesn't need a glitchy, out-of-date program bogging it down.

So here I am realizing I don't a have an import workflow. I stopped using Lightroom on the cloud but I have a disk copy I bought 2 years ago.

So other than drag and drop, what methods are used by the people here?

Thank you in advance
 

LDS

EOR R
Sep 14, 2012
1,651
190
That depends on what tools you rely on for editing, how do you store and categorize images, and other needs. The Canon EOS Utility itself will help you to import photos into a given file structure. Most modern OS will offer to import your images too, albeit with limited functionalities.

I do found the Lightroom Import module useful, others hate it - but it's useful if your main editor is Lightroom itself, and use its database features. There are others tool-independent utilities from simpler ones, to sophisticated ones for more complex workflows.

Do you need just to preview, cull and import photos quickly? Do you need to add tag and keywords for fast retrieval across different folders? Do you need to apply basic processing to imported photos? Do you need to convert them into other formats?
 

Photorex

EOS RP
Nov 19, 2016
284
72
I do not use the import function in Lightroom in the first place to import my pictures from the card into the PC. It´s simply too slow to import all. Instead I copy them with Explorer to their destination on the PC. Then I'm using FastSone Imageviewer to quickly sort out the unwanted pictures. Finally I use Lightroom to import the remaining photos. This for me is the fastest workflow for 3 reasons.
1. I only import the remaining files with the slowest application
2. The import with Lightroom with photos already on my drive is faster tahn the copy process during import
3. I tend to start develop some of my photos right after import. This slows down the process of sorting out the unwanted photos. Sorting them out with FastStone Imageviewer does not slow me down during this process as I'm not able to do development work on them.

Frank
 
May 17, 2020
8
1
That depends on what tools you rely on for editing, how do you store and categorize images, and other needs.
I am at the point of a "fresh start"

I'll check out the EOS utility.
Do you need just to preview, cull and import photos quickly? Do you need to add tag and keywords for fast retrieval across different folders? Do you need to apply basic processing to imported photos? Do you need to convert them into other formats?

Short answer is I want something that reliably moves the files off the card into decent organized file system. It would need to be faster and easier that Windows copy-paste for something basic like that. More features and functionality would be be great but it really depends on how much a hassle it is to use versus the benefit.

So I am open to lots of different methods.
 

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
Mar 25, 2011
15,801
938
Thats a good question, and it requires that you have a overall plan for how you plan to manage, store, find, and edit your photos. Lightroom Classic was developed with input from many professional photographers and has the tools to support various workflows. You can use it with outside tools or it does it all. I've used many of the top editing tools over the years, but finally settled in on two. The Adobe photographers package which is subscription based and is often on sale for about $90-$100 a year, and ACDSee which I use for jpeg edits of images that are temporary. I've used it since the days of the early internet where linux commands were needed so I just kept on.

If you are going to acquire a lot of photos over the years, then a image management system is going to payback. Lightroom has one built in. It stores information about each image, what the edit settings are, keywords, which camera and lens was used, tons of things in its database and you can search and filter by those many various things. So, if you want to see images taken by your 5D MK IV at ISO 26500, you can do it.

Keywording each photo as you enter it is critical, you don't need to put photos in different folders, just develop a set of keywords and add them to the photo Lightroom makes it fast and easy.

There are many approaches, and getting it right at the start gives a foundation to build on.

A photo editor without a management feature means you need a separate one to use when importing, one whose keywords can be read by others. Usually, this involves a sidecar file which must be kept with the photo. Doing that for the rest of your life???

In any event, you should readup on the various schemes for importing and managing photos because changing later is probably impractical.
 

LDS

EOR R
Sep 14, 2012
1,651
190
I am at the point of a "fresh start"
Then Mt. Spokane is right when he writes:

In any event, you should readup on the various schemes for importing and managing photos because changing later is probably impractical.
Short answer is I want something that reliably moves the files off the card into decent organized file system.
Basically, when importing there are two main approaches: storing the photo in some chronological order (es year, month, day), or using some other kind of classification (i.e. customer, job, subject, event, place, whatever). You can also use any combination of them

Personally, I found the first approach easier if you are not a professional (or very methodical photographer) and each import can't be easily assigned to a single category, and you don't want to make multiple imports for each image type. Even simple tools like EOS Utility can use the image date to import files into folders organized by date (with subfolders as well).

But it makes retrieval harder unless you can remember when a given photo was taken. So some way to assign keywords/tags to images becomes important, although it adds some effort to imports - unless that can be automated (but AI often fails still). If photos are geotagged, that can be used to search them as well in some tools.

IMHO is usually easier to add/remove/modify tags than moving images around in the file system. But because there is no standard for keywording and tagging (even when they can be stored in the EXIF data), it's easy to become dependant on the tools used to manage them. I found useful the tool to edit photos are able to use the same data to find and open photos.

You'll need to plan for a workflow that fits your needs. I'll give you an example of my workflow using Lighroom, but that fits my needs, yours may be wholly different and work better with other tools. For example, I usually have to import hundreds of images, not thousands. While a professional photographer may want to ensure that photos for different customers are never mixed.
  1. Photos are imported from the card (using a card reader) with LR, set to generate standard previews (LR import settings have an impact on the import speed). This import is also a first "backup" of the images on the card.
  2. I use a two-level folder hierarchy, YYYY\YYYY-MM-DD (the year in the last subfolder is useful if I make a copy somewhere else)
  3. In the import preview, I may perform a first culling, deselecting obviously bad images.
  4. At this step I set keywords that can be assigned to the whole import, and assign some metadata from a preset. I may skip this step and do it later if getting the images off the card quickly is more important than classifying them.
  5. The import is run.
  6. I exit Lightroom, and sync the new folders to a NAS, so the new imported images are stored there too. If I think they are important, I may make another copy to another external disk as well. I use the robocopy command line utility in Windows. Only at this point I may reuse the card.
  7. I re-enter LR, and perform the final culling, also adding specific keywords and data to images for later retrieval
  8. Images are edited, and other keywords or data may be added as needed.
 
May 17, 2020
8
1
Keywording each photo as you enter it is critical, you don't need to put photos in different folders, just develop a set of keywords and add them to the photo Lightroom makes it fast and easy.

There are many approaches, and getting it right at the start gives a foundation to build on.

A photo editor without a management feature means you need a separate one to use when importing, one whose keywords can be read by others. Usually, this involves a sidecar file which must be kept with the photo. Doing that for the rest of your life???

In any event, you should readup on the various schemes for importing and managing photos because changing later is probably impractical.
Thanks for the advice. Sidecar files is an issue one doesn't know about until it bites you.

Any suggestions on where to read about import schemes? I tried a search on these forums. The results for "import" for example were interesting but had nothing to do with the topic.

I am used to having different folders for different projects. The idea of accessing my images via a program instead of Windows Explorer does not sit well with me. I like to know exactly where that file is, not just LIBRARY. Old habit from college when people got burned because they saved the report in WORD.

Also, Tags don't seem appealing but I can change my mind. Part of the problem may be a bad habit of 1) insert card 2) Start import 3) start dinner, go to bed, etc.

Also if I tag a group of photos with the same keyword, why not use a folder like "2020-05-19 zoo"?

The other issues are astrophotos get project names, like "Orion 100mm 2020-05-18" and weddings are filed w2020-05-17 Smith Jones.

The set-in-my-ways is holding me back and that is why I am asking for advice. I have shot on SLRs since 1990 and DSLRs since 2012. I've covered weddings from 2015. The wedding business slowed down in 2018 because I am/was a field engineer and the travel schedule become too heavy. Before COVID, I was preparing to shift more time to weddings. While I am laid off it is a good time to switch.

Any help is appreciated.
 
May 17, 2020
8
1
I use a two-level folder hierarchy, YYYY\YYYY-MM-DD (the year in the last subfolder is useful if I make a copy somewhere else)
I used the same file system.

My issue with LR is the multi-step process. Why do we need to done something three times for it to be once once? Preview this, then import, then exit, then........

It would seems so simple to have a workflow of 1) copy photos to hard drive 2) group photos 3) label/tag photos. No idea why Adobe wont do that. Am I missing something? Labeling and tagging each photo individually seems like a lot of work for little to no return. (In my line of work, everything must be worth the time. We don't do something just to do it)

Thanks
 

dppaskewitz

EOS 80D
Jul 19, 2011
182
3
72
Here's what works for me, using LR Classic:

1. When I started with a DSLR, I didn't have LR. So, I decided on about 5 major classifications (Family and Friends, Rail fanning (don't ask), Vacations, Outings, Other). And used those classifications to organize photos in Windows Explorer.
2. Within each classification, I have a folder for the year.
3. Within each year, I make a sub-folder for a "shoot." That could be multi-day (e.g., a vacation) or one day.
4. Each subfolder is named in YEAR-MO-DA format with a short descriptive name following. Multi day subfolders are YEAR-MO-DA#DA for start and end days (e.g., 2020-05-02#31 Kauai --- for the vacation I'm supposed to be on right now. Oh well).
5. If multi day, there is a lower level subfolder for each day (e.g., of the vacation). (e.g., 2020-05-19 Queen's Bath --- Maybe next year....)
6. I used this file structure until I started using LR. When I began using LR, I continued using it. (I thought about changing to an organization starting with the Year, then the categories, then "Shoots" within the categories. But, this works for me, the way my mind works. I recognize that most people would skip using the categories. I find it helps me, but I can see it working for astrophotos, weddings and the like.
7. I have something like 156,000 photos in my LR Library (I know, at least 90% is crap; someday I hope to spend some time doing more culling, particularly in the early years when I was less choosy about what I kept). I can find any photo within a few minutes without using keywords. I just have to remember where I was and about what year.
8. If I want to see the Windows file structure location of a photo, I right click it and select "Show in Explorer." Windows Explorer opens and there it is.
9. After I import photos and do the first cull, I rename the remaining photos with YEAR-MO-DA-Original file name. So I don't have any duplicate names ever.
10. I try to keyword photos. That's really helpful if I want all my photos with a sunset, for example.
11. I now NEVER move a photo (or a folder) except through LR. (LR is actually pretty good at finding missing photos when you screw up. Trust me, I know).
12. I have learned and use LR's Collections feature. If I want to have a group of photos to show to the camera club during a Zoom meeting, I put them in a collection. Then, I can go to the collection and share easily. And, I leave in the collection so I can remember what I shared. These aren't copies of the photos, they are simply a note in the LR sidecar file that the photo exists both in the Library file structure and also in whatever collections it has been placed into.
13. So long as I don't violate No. 11 above, I have not had a problem with side car files being separated from the photo files. Knock on wood.
14. This sounds like I like LR. It's addictive. It's well thought out and it works. Other software may do the cataloguing as well (On1, Luminar, etc.). But LR works well for these purposes.
15. But, if LR ever went away, I would still have my file structure, all of my raws (obviously, I wouldn't be able to see LR edits unless I imported the whole mess into a competitor software); and everything I have processed in Photoshop and saved as a Tiff. So there is comfort in that.
16. I know, sounds like a lot of work and confusing. But, it's remarkably simple once the bones of the structure are in place.
 

HenryL

5D Mk IV
Apr 1, 2020
27
86
I used the same file system.

My issue with LR is the multi-step process. Why do we need to done something three times for it to be once once? Preview this, then import, then exit, then........

It would seems so simple to have a workflow of 1) copy photos to hard drive 2) group photos 3) label/tag photos. No idea why Adobe wont do that. Am I missing something? Labeling and tagging each photo individually seems like a lot of work for little to no return. (In my line of work, everything must be worth the time. We don't do something just to do it)

Thanks
Hi Seeker,

Forgive me if I'm being dense, it's certainly not intentional, but I'm not clear on what the objection to Lightroom is? Lightroom provides exactly what you say in 1, 2, 3 above. I do the following after each outing:
  1. Insert card, import module opens. I use what is described above - yyyy/yyyy-mm-dd. I do have a few exceptions, but regardless it takes 2 seconds to select the destination folder. Because I download images after each outing, at this point I also add keywords that apply to the entire group. You could easily skip this step if you aren't into keyboarding keywording, and you have the ability you stated to just look for a folder in the catalog. Right here I've already done all the things you mentioned above.
  2. Once imported, it's a simple task to quickly go through and select the keepers. I work on those as desired
That's it, done. Is there something that you are wanting to do that I haven't covered? I don't think so but it's my second Monday of this week. ;)
 

LDS

EOR R
Sep 14, 2012
1,651
190
My issue with LR is the multi-step process. Why do we need to done something three times for it to be once once? Preview this, then import, then exit, then........
That is my workflow, I don't work on the photos UNTIL I have at least a copy/backup made. If anything bad happens (accidental deletions, etc) I want to be sure I can recover them.

That is why I exit LR - because I make a copy of the catalog as well, since it will hold some of the data applied when imported. It is not needed - as I said you need to tailor the workflow to your needs.

With LR you can plug the camera/card, import everything, and then work on the images immediately - from the same application. You can select multiple images in LR and tag them at once (you can also edit multiple images at once in LR).

Depending on how much is extensive/sophisticated your tagging/keywording, it can be made on several images at once, sometimes on a single image.
 

LDS

EOR R
Sep 14, 2012
1,651
190
Also, Tags don't seem appealing
The advantage of tags/keywords is they are multidimensional. For example: "why not use a folder like "2020-05-19 zoo"? "

I could tag a photo with different tags, for example, "zoo", ""Lion", "Cubs", "New York", "John", "Jane", "birthday" (and many others) - and then search on any combination of them.

In LR Classic keyword can be hierarchical, for example you can have "wildlife < mammals < feline < lion < cub" and "wildlife < mammals < felines < tiger". Now you can ask LR to show photos with the keyword "felines" and it will return both the lion cub and the tiger. Putting every keyword in the folder name is awkward. You may also want to search for felines, but only among photos took in a zoo in USA.

It may be useful for you, or not. When I travel, I can take different kind of photos. For example some may be architectural images or landscapes, others may be street images, others may be of wildlife. I find useful to be able to find easily all images of XIII century castles in Europe under the snow.

Of course if you shoot a wedding professionally you may not be interested at all in tagging photos beyond the names and date. Astrophotographs can have few dimensions as well, albeit some wide field ones may contain many objects, and other data could be added like which filter was used (if any), etc.

Some tool are able to automatically index and search for lens model, aperture, shutter speed, etc., saving you the time to remember to add it to each folder or photo.
 
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Reactions: HenryL
May 17, 2020
8
1
Hi Seeker,

Forgive me if I'm being dense, it's certainly not intentional, but I'm not clear on what the objection to Lightroom is?
Sorry for the confusion, I have no objection to Lightroom. In fact, I bought a stand-alone copy about a year ago when I saw a last remaining copy on a store shelf. I also used the cloud version when I started weddings until the team moved to something else.

I just want to know what else is available and if there is a best way to use Lightroom. Optimizing settings will have a learning curve and I'm good with that. If the end results are justified. It is too easy nowadays to spend time learning software only to find out it doesn't suite you.

If you ever use AutoCAD you see it is a very useful program, within it's limits. And I had the experience of needing one professor to remove some bad teaching from a previous one.
 
May 17, 2020
8
1
The advantage of tags/keywords is they are multidimensional. For example: "why not use a folder like "2020-05-19 zoo"? "

It may be useful for you, or not. When I travel, I can take different kind of photos. For example some may be architectural images or landscapes, others may be street images, others may be of wildlife. I find useful to be able to find easily all images of XIII century castles in Europe under the snow.
So it looks like tags require experience to find a happy medium; not too broad but not too many. I'll just have to keep my OCD in check.;)
 
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HenryL

5D Mk IV
Apr 1, 2020
27
86
Sorry for the confusion, I have no objection to Lightroom. In fact, I bought a stand-alone copy about a year ago when I saw a last remaining copy on a store shelf. I also used the cloud version when I started weddings until the team moved to something else.

I just want to know what else is available and if there is a best way to use Lightroom. Optimizing settings will have a learning curve and I'm good with that. If the end results are justified. It is too easy nowadays to spend time learning software only to find out it doesn't suite you.

If you ever use AutoCAD you see it is a very useful program, within it's limits. And I had the experience of needing one professor to remove some bad teaching from a previous one.
Thanks for clarifying, I think I see the question you're asking now. Let me toss out a few alternatives I've tried over the years. First a little background. I started with Lightroom 1.0, used every version up to and including 6.x, the last perpetual licensed version. I had/have a fundamental aversion to subscription software like the Adobe. It's not the monthly payment that irks me, it's the "what happens when I stop paying for it" question that I object to. If after, say, a year of payments I was able to cancel and stand pat on whatever the current version is at that time, well then I'd be perfectly fine with it. 6.x was fine when I only had a 7DII and 5DIV. Realizing I would one day get a new camera and LR 6.x won't ever support it, a few years ago I started looking for alternatives:

1. ON1 Photo Raw - I've used every version of this, they upgrade versions annually. I find this to be the most complete Lightroom alternative, but even 3-4 versions in, it's rough around the edges. Never did get the Lightroom migration to work after spending two months with their support team. It does ok with editing, keywording, and there is no import - you work with files directly in your operating system folder structure. Giving up on this officially now, each version has it's own bugs, it's getting slower and slower with each revision, and it doesn't do "cataloging" as well as Lightroom. And if I have to upgrade annually in hopes of finally getting a non-buggy fully functional application, aren't I on a subscription of sorts?

2. Adobe Bridge - can handle the imports and culling of photos, not really a DAM though. But the price is right (free).
3. Capture One - Pricey, high quality app but the DAM portion is lacking or non-existent (been a while on this one). Didn't last long with this one, just never caught on with it.
4. Luminar - Waited forever for their DAM, as far as I know it still hasn't materialized.
5. DXO PhotoLab - just started a trial a few weeks ago. Basically just a raw converter, but a powerful one that I may actually purchase. Like ON1, it works with files directly in the file system. Can do "Indexing" instead of cataloging, and also can use keywords, but I haven't used that part at all.
6. There have been others that I just can't remember any longer. Bottom line is, for me, no other application fully replaces Lightroom. Most do a little of what it does, none do it all. Not worth it for me to rely on 2 or 3 programs to do everything I can do in LR.

Where am I at today? I had budgeted for a new camera this year, planned on a 5DV, but going to get the R5 instead. Also just picked up an M6II, so my legacy version of LR would never support these camera's directly. Converting to DNG just wasn't going to happen, and I just utterly failed at finding a single application that would replace LR, so I choked it down and paid for a subscription. :sick: I know...it still hurts just thinking about it. I was pleasantly surprised, though, that the current version is actually significantly faster on my 5 year old iMac. Maybe I'll get another year or two out of it. No more annual upgrades hoping ON1 would have fixed their app, at least this way I know going in what I'm paying and the app just works. What happens if I quit the subscription? I knew I could still browse and print my photos, but wasn't aware that you can still import new photos and use all the DAM functions. Only the develop and map modules don't work. Still not happy about that, but decided I could live with that if the subscription thing didn't work out down the road.

Lightroom is customizable, you can use it in any number of ways and find a flow that works for you. I generally use the heirarchical structure to my files, and "loosely" keyword things at import. This way I can find say, all photos taken at in May 2019 just by clicking through the folders, or I can also look for all pictures of eagles regardless of year or location by keyword search. File 'em any way you like, just one warning (and someone else alluded to it) if you use LR for managing file structure, don't ever move files/folders outside of LR.

-H
 
May 17, 2020
8
1
. File 'em any way you like, just one warning (and someone else alluded to it) if you use LR for managing file structure, don't ever move files/folders outside of LR.

-H
What is a DAM? Digital asset manager?

You reminded me why I was frustrated with LR back in the day. In order to edit anything, I needed to import to the catalog. For the weddings it was fine but that meant it was slow going for my older raw files.

Since I am going with a new hard drive, rather than install and test different programs, I'd thought I'd ask and do the research first.

It also seems my buying a disk of LR didn't really help (of course).

I know what you mean about renting software. I had tried premiere elements a little but am learning DaVinci resolve after the drive swap. In fact, I should put it on the laptop while waiting on the desktop rebuild.

I think I will buy a month of lightroom and see how the import and catalog work after it runs out.

The Alternate is ctrl+c then ctrl+p

Also, big question: how does it work when someone divides their editing time between a desktop and a laptop when using lightroom?

My old laptop was too weak for LR but my new one if good enough for serious video editing (this was before other work changed plans)

I prefer to edit images on the desktop but on lunch hours or on the road the laptop is a must.

Normal my life is not.

Thanks
 

HenryL

5D Mk IV
Apr 1, 2020
27
86
What is a DAM? Digital asset manager?

You reminded me why I was frustrated with LR back in the day. In order to edit anything, I needed to import to the catalog. For the weddings it was fine but that meant it was slow going for my older raw files.

Since I am going with a new hard drive, rather than install and test different programs, I'd thought I'd ask and do the research first.

It also seems my buying a disk of LR didn't really help (of course).

I know what you mean about renting software. I had tried premiere elements a little but am learning DaVinci resolve after the drive swap. In fact, I should put it on the laptop while waiting on the desktop rebuild.

I think I will buy a month of lightroom and see how the import and catalog work after it runs out.

The Alternate is ctrl+c then ctrl+p

Also, big question: how does it work when someone divides their editing time between a desktop and a laptop when using lightroom?

My old laptop was too weak for LR but my new one if good enough for serious video editing (this was before other work changed plans)

I prefer to edit images on the desktop but on lunch hours or on the road the laptop is a must.

Normal my life is not.

Thanks
Sorry, yes DAM is digital asset management.

Yes, Lightroom requires the import step, some don't like that part. Myself, I figure I have to somehow get the files from a card to the computer anyway, so it's not like an extra step in my workflow since copy/import is the same step for me.

Of the programs I mentioned, DXO and ON1 allow you to open just a single file directly without any import. Others may as well, I just don't recall at the moment. As mentioned, their various cataloging features are lacking compared to LR, so like everything else it's a tradeoff. Not experienced with multiple computers as you describe. The way I understand it, if you keep the photos AND the catalog on one external drive, you can move back and forth seamlessly. There may be other scenarios that would work, but I'm not aware of them and I think all the other applications have similar limitations.

Good luck finding a workflow that fits your needs, it may take some. Best I can suggest is be flexible and don't expect a 100% solution.
 

LDS

EOR R
Sep 14, 2012
1,651
190
So it looks like tags require experience to find a happy medium; not too broad but not too many.
Sure. How much tagging depends on the photos use. For example people trying to sell photos are advised to tag them as much as they could (some tools/site to sell photos can import tags/keywords) so there's better chances they show up in searches. If you tag for your personal use you can limit yourself with fewer tags relevant to you. The good about keeping "metadata" outside the file name is that it's easy to add/modify/delete them anytime, and the file or folder name does not change. With some tools (including LR) it's possible to create dynamic collections which show automatically images with the given properties, including tags or keyword, regardless where they are actually stored.

Also, big question: how does it work when someone divides their editing time between a desktop and a laptop when using lightroom?
With LR you have two options: use the cloud storage so you can edit the same image from everywhere in a simple way (but then you have more limited option to store photos locally, and you need a decent internet connection), or you have to import/exports catalogs. LR can even let you work on smart previews without having access to the source photo, and apply edits later, but it does require some more work. For example while travelling I import into a new catalog on my laptop, them import that catalog into the main one when I return at home (I use a single catalog, others use multiple catalogs).

You could also try to work using systems that can sync file changes using a remote storage (Dropbox, OneDrive, GoogleDrive) but of course you need the network speed to avoid it becomes a bottleneck.
 

Lurker

EOS 80D
Dec 8, 2012
161
20
I like to keep it simple.
I use File Explorer to copy all the files off the card to a folder/folders on disk.
I don't care how long this takes, I walk away. I may go say hi to my wife, get something to eat/drink or clean and put gear away.
When I come back I go into either Fast Picture Viewer or FastRaw Viewer to quickly go through and cull the obvious bad images. I'll then go through again to quickly evaluate the remaining images to remove any uninspired images or select the best of a set of duplicate images. I look for any not so obviously bad images and remove them.

One nice extra with Fast Picture Viewer, they have a codec so that you can view raw images right in FIle Manager.

Once that process is done you can do what you need to to get your files ready for your editor of choice.
 

Mt Spokane Photography

I post too Much on Here!!
Mar 25, 2011
15,801
938
What is a DAM? Digital asset manager?



I think I will buy a month of lightroom and see how the import and catalog work after it runs out.

Thanks
No one month subscription. You have to do 12 months at a time, but can pay monthly.

You can do a free trial for 7 days (much too short to learn it, so first, get a book and read it because you are not going to be proficient in a week or even a month by trial and error. Remember, photoshop is included in the photography plan, and its much more powerful and more difficult to learn.

Perhaps you you'd be happy with Photoshop Elements. Its a powerful program, easier to use than photoshop and its not subscription based. I think there is a free 30 day trial.

The deal which includes Photoshop is fantastic in my opinion, I used to buy both but this is cheaper because I buy 1 yr subscriptions when its on sale.

Contrary to what some say, when you stop your subscription, you still have your photos and can still use the Lightroom library module to export your photos from raw to jpeg, etc. The Develop module and Map modules are disabled, but quick develop in the library works, so you can do some development. You do not lose your work, but, you can't keep using develop to process new photos.