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Mobile Photos & Creation Dates

mfanous

New Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
3
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
Hello all,

I was wondering if someone can help me in a matter concerning creation dates in regards to mobile photos.

Little Background
- spent lots of time in the past correctly organizing photos in the library
Photos (top folder)
YYYY (folder)
YYYY-MM-DD Event Name (folder)
- using Lightroom for any edits etc
- until more comfortable, I generally import to my computer, organize them first into the above mentioned, and then import into Lightroom (the reason for this my wife and I share the SLR, at times because of multiple family events in a row, etc, the same care might be used for all events - I know this is wrong, still working on it, but this is fun/hobby/amateur for us, I don't do this professionally)

Enter the problem - Mobile Photos.
- I decided to tackle this problem, so I can have a properly structured photo library. I am beginning to rely more on iPhone 7 Plus for quick family pictures, moments, etc.
- Changes I made to library.
Photos (top folder)
SLR (folder within photos) (then the regular structure from above follows)
Mobile (folder within photos)
Person Name (My wife and I each have a folder under Mobile)
(then the YYYY folder structures begins)

In the past, I used to categorize mobile photos according to the mobile phone (Droid, iPhone 5, 6, etc) however this didn't make sense when looking back, so I cleaned all that up.

Currently, I use an app called PhotoSync (wonderful app) that lets me upload in a myriad of ways. I noticed something odd and wanted to know if the following headache was worth it.

I have 2 methods that I am trying out for upload (Photosync to Mac, and Photosync to Amazon Cloud)
* Note - Amazon Cloud is mounted to my computer through oDrive. I don't use the Amazon App to upload.

In Finder, when looking at a picture...there are 3 things
Created
Modified
Last Opened

Photosync on Mac upload method
Created and Modified are the same date.

Photosync to Amazon Cloud (which syncs back to my computer via oDrive)
Created is a different date (date of upload)
Modified is a different date (99.9% date of picture taken or until it gets modified)

Current solution with Mobile Photos specifically (due to filename issues when importing)
I use a script from Phil Harvey (ExifTool) that pulls up the EXIF data (Date Time Original) of when the picture was shot, and I use that to rename the file correctly. So my filename (in addition to the Exif) has the correct date/time naming convention
(YYYY-MM-DD at HH:mm:ss - IMG#### - pixel length x pixel width.jpg)

After this is done and I verified it. I do another task of updating the Finder Date (Created/Modified)

How important (in the grand scheme) are the Finder dates (Created/Modified)?

Ultimate Goals
- Organized Library for Mobile and SLR
- Lightroom Friendly for Tagging/Editing/etc
- Share in an organized fashion

Please let me know your thoughts!
 

rob211

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2014
Messages
1,123
Location
Walnut Creek, CA USA
Lightroom Experience
Advanced
Lightroom Version
First, I don't understand why you are creating work for yourself by putting stuff into those various folders. Lr already knows that a JPEG was made by the iPhone (or any other camera). You can filter on that, create smart collections, etc etc. No need to "add" that info redundantly by putting stuff in different folders.

Second, not sure what you mean by "person name." Can I assume that is the photographer? if so, I would put that into metadata. That way it's stored where it should be, and again it's more accessible for filtering, sorting, etc within Lr. "Creator" would be the IPTC tag to use, and you could easily apply that with a metadata preset I expect.

Third, I would't worry about Finder/filesystem dates. They are very different from the exif and iPTC timestamps in the photos themselves. Most photo software when sorting, filtering or otherwise using timestamps is gonna use exif data. Filesystem timestamps might be important to backup software, but normally you wouldn't mess with those. You probably are only noticing them cuz you're still messing with folders, which are a rather poor way for organizing photos, and this is just one example of that. Again, since obviously the images have the correct exif date, why replicate that elsewhere? maybe I'm missing something in your workflow though.
 

mfanous

New Member
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
3
Lightroom Experience
Beginner
Lightroom Version
First, I don't understand why you are creating work for yourself by putting stuff into those various folders. Lr already knows that a JPEG was made by the iPhone (or any other camera). You can filter on that, create smart collections, etc etc. No need to "add" that info redundantly by putting stuff in different folders.

Second, not sure what you mean by "person name." Can I assume that is the photographer? if so, I would put that into metadata. That way it's stored where it should be, and again it's more accessible for filtering, sorting, etc within Lr. "Creator" would be the IPTC tag to use, and you could easily apply that with a metadata preset I expect.

Third, I would't worry about Finder/filesystem dates. They are very different from the exif and iPTC timestamps in the photos themselves. Most photo software when sorting, filtering or otherwise using timestamps is gonna use exif data. Filesystem timestamps might be important to backup software, but normally you wouldn't mess with those. You probably are only noticing them cuz you're still messing with folders, which are a rather poor way for organizing photos, and this is just one example of that. Again, since obviously the images have the correct exif date, why replicate that elsewhere? maybe I'm missing something in your workflow though.

Thank you rob211 for the reply,

Let me explain a part. For a long time (until 3-4 years ago), all my photos (SLR, mobile, scanned, etc) were scattered across several different external drives, CDs, etc. I had no "real system" for anything. I ended up investing in a Synology to create a more organized workflow (photos, videos, projects, audio, etc). Before investing in a lightroom, I created the a Finder/Filesystem hierarchical organization for myself.

So when it came to pictures, they were all stored in a folder called Photos...within Photos...were YYYY subfolders, and within YYYY subfolders, were YYYY-MM-DD Event Name subfolders.

When all of this was finally organized, I then invested in Lightroom, learned all about EXIF tags...had to correct some of them either because of Time Zone issues, or because whoever took the pictures didn't set the date correctly to begin with.

Person Name was to distinguish who the photos belong to (my wife or I, when backing up photos from the phone to the mac, it's how I track to make sure, we backup regularly)

Lastly, the reason for concern with Finder/Filesystem. All photos are stored in the Synology, so whenever I need a picture for something very quick and don't have access to Lightroom (or if I just want go through some memories) it seemed easier to go through folders. As far as I know, the Lightroom Catalog cannot be in a network location, so it makes using Lightroom for both my wife and I difficult. The catalog just sits on my computer, and will just do edits when she needs on Lightroom on my computer. I also needed an easy way to send photo albums to Amazon Cloud (or any cloud service) to be viewed by family.

If you see any area that can use fixing, let me know, I am always willing to learn something new!
 

rob211

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2014
Messages
1,123
Location
Walnut Creek, CA USA
Lightroom Experience
Advanced
Lightroom Version
Ah, I see now why the folder business: finding outside of Lr.

I also have to get at stuff without firing up Lr at times. For that reason I write metadata to files. That way other tools can find it. I use a Mac, and on a Mac certain metadata is indexed. So a simple Finder search using Spotlight will turn up any image made with say a particular camera, keyword, etc. But not, I think, creator (since it's just me I don't use that one that much. But the Spotlight criteria "any text" would find it). Or I use Adobe Bridge, which runs on anything. It finds faster than the Mac Finder at times, and can find say "Ansel Adams" in the IPTC field with the creator's name. And even if I don't know what term to search for, it's still better at browsing images than the regular Finder or File Explorer.

So if you didn't concentrate on using folders for imparting this info, but instead put it in metadata in images, I suspect even outside of Lr you'd be better organized.
 
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