I spent the last two days attending Peter Krogh's excellent workshop on Digital Asset Management (DAM, as he likes to put it.) Wow. Do I feel like I've been under a rock for the last 15 years. I left the program yesterday and dragged myself home, feeling like I went through a wringer. Today, I've got all kinds of great ideas about how I'm going to implement this in my digital workflow and, eventually, will be able to manage my most valuable photographic files. One of the best points Peter made was start from this point forward and work on the old stuff later on. That is an emancipating suggestion.
Wednesday night, Peter did a 4-hour lecture over-view of his system (you can get The DAM Book on Amazon) and Thursday was 8 hours of hands-on work with Adobe Bridge, DNG Converter, a little PhotoShop and LightRoom, and an intense introduction to iView Media Pro 3. The last program is amazingly powerful and I wish I had enough time left in my life to get my 30+ years of images processed and indexed, but the amount of time that it would take to digitize 30 years of film means it simply will not ever happen.
I made the leap to buy an Apple MacBook Pro just before going to the program. I am very glad I did (even though I won't get the new computer until at least tomorrow) because some of programs work better on Mac than on PC. As I looked around the room, I was one of about 5 photographers working on a PC laptop. We were the ones who couldn't do some of the steps because they weren't supported in our software. This morning, I was busy buying CS2 and iView Pro for the new laptop. Since I teach at a community college, I was able to take advantage of deep discounts offered to educators for the software and slighter ones for the computer.
I'm going to the four day D-65 Workshop next week where I will be using the new computer and software along with the digital camera. I can't imagine how tired I'll be after that!
iView Media Pro can also be used to track MP3s, movies, documents, tiffs, jpgs and other files as well as DNGs. I'm willing to bet I will find really good ways to use it for my legal files and documents as well as for my photographs. It would be a good way to keep all files related to one client or one case together (although I can also do that in a program I own called TimeMatters which is not quite so robust.)
Later, I'll be off to Fry Electronics looking for this weekend's sales on storage devices.