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Author Topic: To delete or not to delete  (Read 1156 times)
allegretto
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« on: December 26, 2013, 02:08:29 PM »
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Wanted to sample opinions here. Storage is relatively inexpensive but cost isn't the only question.

Suppose you KNOW you already have all your useful, even presentable images organized and backed up at least once or twice.


Do you ever irrevocably delete unwanted images? Not talking borderline images, but ones you know you will never use.  Or do you just keep them cuz you never ever ever delete any image?
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PeterAit
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2013, 09:30:42 AM »
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I permanently delete lots of images. It's not really a storage space issue, but a "less crap to look through" issue. I am an amateur and don't have to worry about a client coming back a year later wanting to see the outtakes from an old shoot.
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Peter
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2013, 10:50:38 AM »
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I delete almost nothing, especially when I have several very similar shots of the same scene. Many times I have gone back to old photos shot years before and found that ones I had neglected first time around were now "obviously" much better than the ones I picked at the time.

It's fun to find treasures while wading through the old stuff that people with more discipline would have deleted.
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iluvmycam
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« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2013, 01:53:30 PM »
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I delete all the crap. But I also shoot cards like film and have a copy on the card. This is becasue I have messed up a few times and lost important images. I can always go back to the master cards.


Space is not so much the issue. I don't have time to screw around with garabge. If it is not going into a musuem or at least close to going into my portfolio, then good chance it is heading for the trash.
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2013, 02:04:39 PM »
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I don't delete much.   I have a blast going back in time with new software features and improvements asking what images I'm now glas I kept..
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JeanMichel
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« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2013, 02:51:28 PM »
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With very few exceptions -- blank frames and such -- I do not bother deleting anything. It is of course a simple matter to delete digitally, wasn't as easy with film. I look at the imported files just as I look at my contacts and neg pages: all there and marked one way or another for printing, etc. The contact sheets or the grid view in LR lets me see the thought process leading to series or single images. Starring, labelling and keywording are the norm for me now.
Jean-Michel
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2013, 02:56:20 PM »
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Hi,

I delete crap, but cameras nowdays produce little of that. So I end up with dozens of images with subtle differences, and I tend to keep them.

Best regards
Erik

Wanted to sample opinions here. Storage is relatively inexpensive but cost isn't the only question.

Suppose you KNOW you already have all your useful, even presentable images organized and backed up at least once or twice.


Do you ever irrevocably delete unwanted images? Not talking borderline images, but ones you know you will never use.  Or do you just keep them cuz you never ever ever delete any image?
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Tony Jay
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« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2013, 03:03:14 PM »
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This is an interesting question.
IMHO deleting images is an important part of DAM.
The issue is not necessarily about storage space as already alluded to.
The M in DAM stands for management and so it behooves us to actively manage our images rather than use Lightroom (or some other application) as a dumb receptacle for our images.
For what it is worth I delete images in several stages:

On import I will immediately delete images that are technical failures (hopelessly blurred, exposure issues beyond redemption, or those that are clearly compositional failures).

Over weeks to months I will review those images again and again. It will not be unusual for a particular image that did not initially stand out to eventually become the pick for that shoot. Sometimes I will be undecided about a particular composition for a long time but then suddenly realise that a subtle crop, or something, makes a radical difference. Sometimes images that I had hopes for I eventually have to abandon after years of wrestling with.

By the way I fully appreciate that others may have a much better tuned sense of the aesthetic and so may be able to make much quicker and more efficient decisions about the viability of an image, however, a bit of a break and a fresh appraisal always help.

Also, in my situation, having only engaged in "serious" photography for about seven years I find that going back through my image collection periodically allows me to delete early images rather easily because what seemed pretty acceptable four or five years ago is clearly substandard now. As of writing this I only have about 1% of the images I shot in 2007 still in my catalog, however, I still have about 65-70% of the images shot in 2013 in my catalog.

This question does have philosophical overtones and so some individuals will never delete any images and be able to advance sound reasons for their approach while some, like myself, progressively delete images and are able to justify that approach.

One possible solution for those who always have nagging doubts about deleting images despite acknowledging the need to manage their image collection is to keep a redundant archive of all the images they have ever shot while still actively managing their catalog by deleting images. If a mistake is ever made it would still be possible to re-introduce that image into the catalog from the archive. Since HD storage space is relatively cheap and dropping progressively in price this may be an option to have the best of both worlds.

Tony Jay
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