I’ve been wanting to document and share my Photography workflow — from camera to archive — for a few weeks now. The introduction of Adobe Lightroom into my workflow recently has meant a delay which has ultimate turned out for the best. I’ve changed my workflow significantly several times over the last few weeks as I manage two applications that do similar, complementary, yet quite different functions.

  • My Digital Asset Management system is IMatch and has been for 15 or so years. It is the tool I use to add metadata to my photos and organise them for historical family reference.
  • Lightroom is the new kid on the block. It too handles metadata though for my uses falls far short of what I easily achieve with IMatch. The reason for Lightroom in my workflow is photo editing.

My challenge has been working through the issues caused by both applications touching the metadata in my images. Last night, with some assistance of Mario (IMatch’s developer) to solve a recurring circle of metadata updates, I finally settled on something that will work.

Here is my high-level process. The detail will come over the coming weeks.

  1. Copy RAW photos from my Canon 400D into Lightroom. Cull those I don’t like and develop (edit) them. Once I’ve edited, move the photos into IMatch. No metadata beyond editing instructions is added in Lightroom.
  2. Copy JPEG/HEIC photos from the family’s phones direct into IMatch. Cull those I don’t want/need to keep.
  3. Add Metadata in IMatch for Event, Location and GPS, People and correct Dates.
  4. File away into my archive folder structure (YYYY\YYYY-MM).

Four simple points, with a whole lot of detail to come.