Most people think that shooting photos doesn’t have anything to do with being able to organize your digital photos effectively. However, I found that there are a few important settings you can make on your camera which will help you greatly once you transfer those beautiful photos to your computer. If you miss them, on the other hand, your task to keep your photos organized will become more difficult. Read on about three camera settings that can help you keep your photos organized.
Set your camera’s time and date
This is the most important piece of information you want captured with your photos. Without this setting, you will not be able to keep your photos organized.
Remember to change your camera’s time and date when you travel to a different time zone and remember to change back once you come home from traveling.
This is the most important and mandatory camera setting without which you will not be able to organize your digital photos effectively.
Set your camera’s folder naming scheme
Now that you have the date and time zone correctly configured on your camera, you need to check and make sure that your camera is set to create a new folder on the memory card daily.
Why is having a new photo folder each day helpful for organizing your photos?
While it is true that you can shoot photos for multiple events in one day, most of the time we have photos from a single event being shot in one day.
This setting is optional, however, since most of the time you are using your software to import photos. And if you have setup your software correctly, it will create sub folders for each day of shooting.
What’s the use then?
This setting will help you in the case when you must transfer photos from your memory card on some device where you do not have access to your software that automatically creates sub folders for each day.
This situation happens frequently when you travel and you need to empty your memory cards using a computer or backup device that is very simple and small.
If you go to your camera’s menu and you don’t find anything related to creating folders you might be lucky because most cameras these days will have this setting by default. More high-end camera can offer several options like: “Monthly” or “Weekly” in addition to “Daily”. Just check it and make sure it is set to “Daily”.
Set your camera’s file naming scheme
Most cameras have two schemes: “reset numbers every time your remove the card” and “continue numbering even after removing the card and putting it back. The latter is also known as “continuous numbering”.
Continuous numbering means that the images will be named by your camera according to a large number range (like 1 to 9999). With this scheme you get about 10,000 images with unique numbering. Your camera will create a different folder for each day of shooting.
The chances of you shooting more than 10,000 photos in one day are pretty small, so this will help you in the long run. ?This will help you avoid many problems and duplicate photos. ?
Turn your GPS on
If you want geo-tags to be added to your photos as you take them and your camera has a GPS unit, turn it on.
However, just beware that having a GPS sensor on your camera turned on will drain your battery very quickly.
When battery life is very important to you (like when you travel) it is wise to turn your GPS unit off because this is the largest battery draining function in your camera. Just remember that there is always software that can add geographical information to your photos after you have shot them.
So be discerning when you use it.
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If you do a lot of image editing like I do, I recommend using Adobe Lightroom Classic CC via the annual Adobe Creative Cloud subscription. Lightroom has excellent photo editing capabilities. Yes, Lightroom has a steeper learning curve as you have to learn to keep your catalogs in sync with your hard drive. But if you do image editing, Adobe Lightroom is my favorite.
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