Saturday, December 25, 2021

"CULL"ing the four letter world that photographers don't want to speak

I'm getting close to filling my 5TB disk on which I store my mastercopy of my photo library. There are almost half a millions files, a lot are jpeg & RAW pairs and there are movies as well. This actually only covers my 2010 to 2021, The 1999 to 2009 is on a differeent 1,5TB disk, Then there are 6 2TB off-site backup copies in 2 sets of 3 external usb harddrives, that I rotate every 2 months. Its becoming a bit of a production. Also i'm now faced with the isses to determine what is the most sensible way to get extra space.

1. Probably the most likley, is I'll take two of the external disks from my second offsite disks and add a third local photo library disks (I do have one USB port left) and make just one offsite set of 4 2TB disks. The surplus 2TB can become a rotating backup of the last 2 or 3 months. OK this will give me "some" headroom for at least the first part of next year.

2. Sit down and do some serious "CULLing" of things I am never likely to reconsider. This is that really scary thing a lot of photographers or even frantic smartphone snappers, will have to face at some time. 

Why has this come about because I have and use photo mechanic and (usually) spend a bit of time when I "ingest" (load the photos from the camera card onto the computer) my photos where I in theory on load the "keepers"? The out of focus, poor composition, unfortunate expression and straight bad images always get deleted straight away.

The problem is I have come to like and use techniques that have multipled the photos I take. Particularly with the fun features on my little olympus cameras (HDR & Focus bracketting, Panoramic stitching, Burst mode and PRO capture). Also the new favoutite and automated intervalometer for stop motion. Ok I blame them, but perhaps I have become a little less dilligent and skip through these sets as I import them, not being strict enough on what gets deleted.

OK could I find and use modern software (specifically AI based system) to help me re-tackle the horrible task of reviewing and further deleting my photos. Seems it could even be an economically attractive option as well if I could get ride of perhaps 40% of my files, that could translate into 3-4 years before I have to outlay on extra disk capacity. Not sure what say two 4-5TB external harddrive (or the equivalent cloud storage) might cost but lets estimate around $150 each or $300 now. If I could find something for $100 that looks economiclly attractive.

What started this was an "offer" for AfterShot at $9.99 ( and thats probably USD$) but in my mind that seemed perfectfor my budget and I download the "free trial". It did a few good things, like  sneak preview grouping that used AI to find those images most like the ones shared on instagram and like services and was very strict with focus, Howeer a lot of its features like eyeclosed andface detect stuff didn't help me a lot also I was getting almost as many possible duplicates as I had photos (ie jpeg & raw pairs were reporting as two duplicates) and in most cases it was flagging the jpeg as the file to keep. Then I realised that the $9.99 was just per month and the discount was jut for a year if you paid up front after that it was $14.99 per month. Buying the extra disk now would be a much better option. I can see a wedding or group photographer is likley to save a lot of time. However what I am looking for is a cheap space creator. 

I do own another programs called  Corel AfterShotPro, which is a light weight RAW Editor I still use it occasionally mainly on my little HP Spectre when away from home. So one aftershot is probably enough. It does allow me to label/keyword, rank, colour code, and flag as Pick or reject but manually not via and automatic AI assisted approach.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

"Exploiting" (aka Faking) Banksy? as an NFT

Here is an interesting article from The BBC about a bansky work "warning sign" being "re-created" as an NFT by its current owner. The story contain a link to the you tube below, which appears to be a spoof of the film, "exit via the gift shop". superficially its all noble sounding, a proportion of the purchase going to charity. etc...

Looking deeper it appears a lot like a not so subtle attempt to ramp up dark memories of a terrible tragedy and opportunity to get publicity and probablu a lot of money from an asset propped in a lounge room. 

At the heart of the issue is can you believe social media and the NFT market (if DAOs or truly anything organized like that truly exists). Is it actually people scamming and exploiting others? Are NFT a real long term investment. What does ownership of something that is public and anyone can "look" on line (and potentially make decent exact reproduction). We do also know Bansky doesn't really like the art investment “establishment” and has gamed them previously. Who can we believe?

Former Christie's auctioneer Charles Allsopp said the concept of buying one [NFT] made "no sense" and "people who invest in it are slight mugs".

 I'm inclined to see this as a story, parts of which (may all) might be just to ramp up sales of something virtual. I would suggest Charles Allsopp advice is worth considering. However please read the details and make up your own mind.

Monday, November 15, 2021

Return to the Old Chestnut :: Scaning Versus Photography

I have looked at the issues of the best way to get a digital copy of your art work many times. I'm still open to finding the best way, but realise there might be different solutions for different media and how the image is to be used. With watercolour possible the most difficult to find a good solution, because much of it's magic lies in it's transparent colours.


Now it's your turn. The above images have been capture with webcam, phone, mirrorless camera and scanner (in no particular order).

Which best shows the watercolourness? 

Which looks best?

Friday, November 12, 2021

The story of the Magic Pen

 My Creativity bootcamp, has been interupted by life, and might be slow to start (but please keep an eye out).

In the meantime here is a nice story, from Danny Gregory of Sketchbook Skool)

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Creativity Bootcamp & Finding your Dominant Eye

This is a new project for me, pulling together a series of art oriented warmup exercises and drills that help focus on seeing as well as practising a few skills. I’m starting by help you find your dominant eye.

Sunday, October 17, 2021

What the? ... is going on at skylum!

I must admit I have read and watched the hype about Luminar NEO. I really can't believe it isn't backward compatible with either Luminar 4 or Luminar AI. Then there is also the constant hype to preorder it. Finally I don't see much in the way of features I would want to use, perhaps with the exception of layers (but they look more like selective filters to me. So I was committed to using Lumiar AI "as is" (ie no more updates)

Then there was a notification that Luminar AI had an update. Great they haven't forgotten their customers.

 Ok it doesn't do much (som extra camera compatibility, fix a big problem with Some Cannon R models and a sky replace feature update (I haven't used the sky replacement in anger yet) Ok not a lot to see. Wrong every time I start I get a pop-up nagged about buying into the Luminar NEO vapourware before its released.


You are going to annihilate a lot of your customers Skylum.