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Import Destination

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Ok, this is a really odd if not silly question. Especially since I've been using LRC since the standalone days back to V3. So please be kind if you answer.
Anyway, I can't for life of me figure out how to use the import by DESTINATION option or what it is even used for? I tried to use it to sort a group of files from a card into separate folder destinations on my external drive where my pictures are stored. But I could only import onto 1 location (folder) at a time instead of into multiple folders simultaneously.
So, if importing to multiple folders is not the purpose of the DESTINATION import option what is the purpose?
 
Solution
I've been using LrC as well as other software and taking pictures long enough to have considered all your recommendations and in fact over the years have used some if not all of them. BTW, I location for keyword information and sometimes even in the photo name although rare and I even sometimes use location as a folder when warranted.
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I believe it's intended to give the user a more visual view of the images in the grid, especially when using one of the LrC date-based folder schemes. It could be especially useful when the memory card contains images from multiple shooting dates (i.e. the card has not been reformatted since the last shoot). When earlier shoots have already been imported and culled in LrC, it will be easier to figure that out when scrolling through the various dates, where you would maybe see a date section containing both checked and greyed-out thumbnails. That would tend to indicate that the specific date's shoot has already been imported, meaning the greyed-out images are the ones that you kept in the catalog, whereas the checked images would be ones you imported and subsequently deleted. So unchecking that specific date in the import panel would stop you re-importing already imported and deleted images.
 
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I believe it's intended to give the user a more visual view of the images in the grid, especially when using one of the LrC date-based folder schemes. It could be especially useful when the memory card contains images from multiple shooting dates (i.e. the card has not been reformatted since the last shoot). When earlier shoots have already been imported and culled in LrC, it will be easier to figure that out when scrolling through the various dates, where you would maybe see a date section containing both checked and greyed-out thumbnails. That would tend to indicate that the specific date's shoot has already been imported, meaning the greyed-out images are the ones that you kept in the catalog, whereas the checked images would be ones you imported and subsequently deleted. So unchecking that specific date in the import panel would stop you re-importing already imported and deleted images.
Jim, the scenario you refer to, multiple dates on 1 card, is exactly what I thought it was meant for. However, the flaw in the implementation is that LRC does not allow import into multiple locations ie, folders simultaneously. So it means each group of dates have to be imported separately. I would like to be able to tell the import to move each image group into a folder based on it's capture date and to do it simultaneously. Am I explaining it clearly?
 
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Not sure I'm understanding. In the Destination panel of the Import Dialog you can elect to organise "By Date", which means that LrC will copy the images from the card (or other source) into a specifically created set of individually dated sub-folders (the sub-folders are dated in accordance with the specific date format selected from the available options). So what you would see in the centre panel when sorting by Destination is that all images are segmented by capture date and the header for each segment will show the name of the sub-folder that they will be copied into.
 
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Jim, the scenario you refer to, multiple dates on 1 card, is exactly what I thought it was meant for. However, the flaw in the implementation is that LRC does not allow import into multiple locations ie, folders simultaneously. So it means each group of dates have to be imported separately. I would like to be able to tell the import to move each image group into a folder based on it's capture date and to do it simultaneously. Am I explaining it clearly?

What Jim has referenced is exactly how I’ve imported multiple dates from 1 card since I started using Lightroom v2. I have just returned from a week long trip and imported my multi day card into Lightroom (cloudy) on my iPadPro. These will be sync’d into the date named folders on my iMac at home by the time I view Lightroom Classic on my iMac. Lightroom Classic has been running 7X24 at home during my whole trip.


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Not sure I'm understanding. In the Destination panel of the Import Dialog you can elect to organise "By Date", which means that LrC will copy the images from the card (or other source) into a specifically created set of individually dated sub-folders (the sub-folders are dated in accordance with the specific date format selected from the available options). So what you would see in the centre panel when sorting by Destination is that all images are segmented by capture date and the header for each segment will show the name of the sub-folder that they will be copied into.
Simply put, it does not allow import of multiple dates into individual folders (dated of course) simultaneously. You must do one date group at a time going back into the import dialog window after each import to import another date. Believe. I had very long chat and remote session with an Adobe rep about this.
 
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What Jim has referenced is exactly how I’ve imported multiple dates from 1 card since I started using Lightroom v2. I have just returned from a week long trip and imported my multi day card into Lightroom (cloudy) on my iPadPro. These will be sync’d into the date named folders on my iMac at home by the time I view Lightroom Classic on my iMac. Lightroom Classic has been running 7X24 at home during my whole trip.


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I use a PC and have been using LRC since version 3. I have been unable to import multiple dates into separate folders in one import simultaneously. As I replied to Jim, I had a very long chat and remote session with an Adobe rep about it and he was unable to do it too. He said he would put it in as a possible feature update. Now this was a little less than a year ago and I haven't tried to do it again since. I bring it up here in this forum because I'm a new member and I frankly don't have warm and fuzzy feelings about Adobe support reps and thought someone here might know a way.
Maybe I'm missing something. Do the destination folders have to be date based? My folder hierarchy top level by year and sub-folders are by subject. Is that the problem?
 

Brent Harsh

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I've used lightroom since V2 also, and have always let the Import process handle splitting into subfolders automatically. Either your rep didn't understand what you were asking for or just didn't want admit he couldn't walk you through it. Maybe because you were referencing the viewing choises of the top bar of the import dialog - that only lets you choose how to want to see the images included in this import (either "all", "new only" or... as sorted by destination folder. But before "destination folder" choice means anything, you have to set up your subfolder strategy for these "destination folders" over on the right side of the dialog, not on that top bar. To do that, expand the "Destination" panel on the right side of the import dialog, and choose "By Date" for "organize" - then choose the date format you want for folder naming. I have "year/year-mm-dd" for the format, and this sorts my images into two subfolders of my "master photos" folder - first a year folder, and then each date gets its own subfolder of that. I see now that you asked one last question about if the subfolders have to be date-based - and yes, they do. About 13 different formats to choose from, but it has to be a date. I don't think there's any way LR could automatically assign "subject names" to subfolders created on an import - it merely chooses a folder name right from the metadata dates of the image files. I'm about to post a sorta-related question and saw yours first - hope this helped.
 
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Maybe I'm missing something. Do the destination folders have to be date based? My folder hierarchy top level by year and sub-folders are by subject. Is that the problem?
Simply put....yes. See my post #4.
 
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I've used lightroom since V2 also, and have always let the Import process handle splitting into subfolders automatically. Either your rep didn't understand what you were asking for or just didn't want admit he couldn't walk you through it. Maybe because you were referencing the viewing choises of the top bar of the import dialog - that only lets you choose how to want to see the images included in this import (either "all", "new only" or... as sorted by destination folder. But before "destination folder" choice means anything, you have to set up your subfolder strategy for these "destination folders" over on the right side of the dialog, not on that top bar. To do that, expand the "Destination" panel on the right side of the import dialog, and choose "By Date" for "organize" - then choose the date format you want for folder naming. I have "year/year-mm-dd" for the format, and this sorts my images into two subfolders of my "master photos" folder - first a year folder, and then each date gets its own subfolder of that. I see now that you asked one last question about if the subfolders have to be date-based - and yes, they do. About 13 different formats to choose from, but it has to be a date. I don't think there's any way LR could automatically assign "subject names" to subfolders created on an import - it merely chooses a folder name right from the metadata dates of the image files. I'm about to post a sorta-related question and saw yours first - hope this helped.
That is what I'm talking about, the viewing choice in the import dialog window named "Destination Folder ". I realize the sub-folders have to already exist. And I know that LrC won't create multiple sub-folders automatically "on-demand" during the import process. The issue is as you suggest, LrC will not let me perform an import to multiple destination subfolders all at one time UNLESS the destination is a date folder as shown on the Import window when "Destination Folder" is selected.
 
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Maybe I'm missing something. Do the destination folders have to be date based? My folder hierarchy top level by year and sub-folders are by subject. Is that the problem?
Well, yes. Lightroom has no way of knowing which images go to which subject folder. If you choose one of the default date named folder schemes and tell Lightroom to import by date, it will put every thing in to the proper folder based upon the capture date found in each file header.

There is really no need to try to organize by folder in Lightroom. This is what collections are all about. If you have subject collections then one image can be in more than one subject collection. FileSystem organization is too restrictive to do this.

With a date based folder structure, You can close the folder panel except for time when you are doing filesystem tasks in Lightroom.
Also with a date based folder system you can move older image file to a lesser used EHD and still access them in Lightroom Classic when you need them.


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Well, yes. Lightroom has no way of knowing which images go to which subject folder. If you choose one of the default date named folder schemes and tell Lightroom to import by date, it will put every thing in to the proper folder based upon the capture date found in each file header.

There is really no need to try to organize by folder in Lightroom. This is what collections are all about. If you have subject collections then one image can be in more than one subject collection. FileSystem organization is too restrictive to do this.

With a date based folder structure, You can close the folder panel except for time when you are doing filesystem tasks in Lightroom.
Also with a date based folder system you can move older image file to a lesser used EHD and still access them in Lightroom Classic when you need them.


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I hear you and I respect your feedback. But let's agree to disagree. I believe there is a need to use a folder based organizational structure.
There was a time I used a strictly date based system. However, based on the teachings of Tim Grey, I found that using subject based folders was a better way for me to go. If you're curious go to his website www.greylearning.com or look him up on YouTube.
Besides, I don't like using collections for organizational purposes because
1) I can't remember when I took a particular photo unless it was of family, 2) and most importantly, collections do not travel well to other software. In the event I should decide to stop using Lightroom, or whats more likely Adobe should force me to stop using Lightroom as my DAM software, collections are not transferable to other software. So mainly for that reason I prefer to use a more cross platform method of organizing my photos.
Regards,
GEGJr
 
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Consider using folders based on location rather than subject if you do not want to use dates. There are several reasons why this might work much better. First of all, an image can contain more than one subject. A family member photographed during a vacation, for example. Would that be ‘subject: family’ or ‘subject:vacation’? It is very important that any folder hierarchy is unambiguous. It must be very clear that an image fits only one folder, not multiple folders. Dated folders fit that criterium, location based folders fit that criterium, subject based folders do not fit that criterium.

The second reason why this might be much better is that it is pretty easy to create and maintain such a folder hierarchy in Lightroom. Like Cletus said, Lightroom does not know your subjects so there is no way to make Lightroom store your photos in the correct folders if you use folders by subject. But for locations this is fairly simple, because you cannot be in more than one location at the same time. When in France, you use the top folder ‘France’ as destination. If you often go to France, you can use subfolders by year inside the ‘France’ folder.

The third reason is that you do not want to have to move images around once they are stored somewhere. An image that was shot in France will never become an image that was shot in Spain, so with folders based on location this will never be a problem. Same thing for date based folders. With subjects it might be a problem. A photo that you consider to be a ‘vacation photo’ right now, may become a ‘family member photo’ if that family member has passed away.
 
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I've been using LrC as well as other software and taking pictures long enough to have considered all your recommendations and in fact over the years have used some if not all of them. BTW, I location for keyword information and sometimes even in the photo name although rare and I even sometimes use location as a folder when warranted.
 
Solution
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I hear you and I respect your feedback. But let's agree to disagree. I believe there is a need to use a folder based organizational structure.
There was a time I used a strictly date based system. However, based on the teachings of Tim Grey, I found that using subject based folders was a better way for me to go. If you're curious go to his website www.greylearning.com or look him up on YouTube.
Besides, I don't like using collections for organizational purposes because
1) I can't remember when I took a particular photo unless it was of family, 2) and most importantly, collections do not travel well to other software. In the event I should decide to stop using Lightroom, or whats more likely Adobe should force me to stop using Lightroom as my DAM software, collections are not transferable to other software. So mainly for that reason I prefer to use a more cross platform method of organizing my photos.
Regards,
GEGJr

We can disagree. But you and Tim Grey will find yourselves in the minority when it comes to Data Asset Management.

The example that I like to use is a photo of Aunt Tilley, Uncle Joe in front of the Eiffel Tower on a vacation. Which folder to you store the photo? You only get one choice. Does it go in the “Vacation” folder? The France folder, the Eiffel Tower folder, the Aunt Turley folder or the Uncle Joe folder?

With Collections, you can assign the same image file to all of the above. If you assign keywords: Aunt Tilley, Uncle Joe, Eiffel Tower, Vacation and France, you can create Smart Collections based upon keywords and other metadata and the one image file will automatically be assigned to all of the smart collections where there is a keyword match.

There is no other DAM tool that offers the management capabilities found in Lightroom All are based upon the archaic and limiting file system organization.

EHD = External Hard Drive.


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I agree with Cletus. Use collection and add keywords which travel well to other software.
I let LR store the files (the container, a computer thing) in folders organized by date (year/date) and I often add a small description text after the date.
As a photograph, I want to manage images, not files. So, for the photos (the contents, a photograph thing), I manage them with collections and keywords so an image can be easyly searchable and can appear in several sbject. A Cletus said, this is a great tool !
 

GregJ

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What Jim has referenced is exactly how I’ve imported multiple dates from 1 card since I started using Lightroom v2. I have just returned from a week long trip and imported my multi day card into Lightroom (cloudy) on my iPadPro. These will be sync’d into the date named folders on my iMac at home by the time I view Lightroom Classic on my iMac. Lightroom Classic has been running 7X24 at home during my whole trip.


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Clee, I'm in Houston visiting kids and grandkids. My daughter is an engineer for Jacobs and tomorrow I'm going to shoot at the construction site of the world's largest water plant. Should be interesting. You may have seen my weird way of transferring my files and their sidecars from my laptop to my PC after I return home from a trip and dump my laptop to my home studio (PC) catalog. I do that to avoid LR creating date folders on a cat import and thus have only my barbaric named folder system like "SE Asia Jan 2020" which contains 4000 raw files shot over a month in SE Asia (as an example). Mt master folder says "raw files". Under it are 900 folders with names like "Cancun Jul 2004" or "Family reunion 1975". I have over 5 TB of raw and TIFF (from slide scans) organized that way. It makes sense to me. But a cat import can really mess that up. That is why I copy the folder to the PC - name it how I want, and then "add" that folder and all its raw files and sidecars to my "master" catalog. It sucks the sidecar file info into the catalog and adds no weird layers of folders or anything else. I think I'm the only person in the world that does it this way.
 
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