Since I got my first digital camera in 2004, I’ve taken thousands of photos using several different cameras and smart phones. Although I’ve been good about transferring them to my computer, I haven’t been consistent in they way I organize them.
This became even more of an issue when my interest in photography as an art form was rekindled a few years ago. In addition, as a web designer and blogger, I also have a large collection of stock photos.
Most personal photo organizers recommend filing by date and/or event. That’s great for snapshots taken at family gatherings and conference, but trying to find a picture of a sunflower (for example) was like looking for a needle in a haystack.
For that reason, I read last year’s Organizing Photos edition of the Professional Organizers Blog Carnival with great interest. I was sure that someone out there would have the perfect solution for me – and they did!
One of the bloggers included a link to an article comparing several different photo organizing software programs. Unfortunately, I don’t remember who it was. If it was you and you’re reading this, please leave a comment so I can thank you properly!
After carefully reading the article, I was convinced that ACDSee Photo Studio was exactly what I needed. Their website describes it as follows:
“Finding, sorting, moving, organizing, and sharing—everything you need for complete mastery over your photography workflow is right here, at your fingertips. Add ratings, hierarchical keywords, categories, and location data to your images. Quickly identify photos for further processing with visual tags or customizable color labels.”
Watch the video to see it in action.
I love the fact that I can create my own categories and subcategories, keywords, and collections, not to mention how easy it is to add this information.
There are also multiple ways to view my collection.
- As shown in the video, I can display the folders which I’ve already created on my hard drive. I can even add, delete, or move folders, all within ACDSee.
- I can view by collection.
- In Catalog view, I can display all the photos in a specific category or subcategory, or with a specific keyword. I can also display by label or rating, but I haven’t yet decided how I will use those.
- Using the Auto Categories feature, I can find photos meeting just about any criteria, including those taken with a specific camera, or camera setting.
With all of the above options, you can change the view mode from Thumbnails (as in my example above) to Thumbs + Details, Tiles, Icons, List, Details, or my personal favorite, Filmstrip.
Although my main objective was to organize my “art” photos and stock photos, the software will work well for personal photos too. Using each family member’s name as a keyword will allow me to easily find material for a slideshow or photo book in the future.
Like any large organizing project, this is not a quick and easy job to be completed in one sitting.Organizing several years' worth of digital photos is a big job, but the right software makes it manageable and enjoyable!Click To Tweet
After purchasing the software, I spent a few leisurely afternoons working on my photos, starting with the most recent and going backwards. I haven’t yet gone back to work on the older ones, but I’m pleased to have a process in place for all my new photos. After an event or photo outing, I transfer all the photos to a new folder on my desktop so I can review them and decide which are worth keeping. Those that make the cut then get moved to my Pictures folder and immediately tagged with appropriate categories and keywords.
I opted for Photo Studio Ultimate so I could take advantage of the advanced editing features, but you get the same photo management features with the less expensive versions. Check it out by downloading a free 30-day trial!
Whether you need a powerful tool to organize your own photo collection or something to recommend to your clients, ACDSee is definitely worth a look.
Photo by Caio Resende from Pexels