An Arduos Task

Geek 3-A few weeks ago I had to take my Mac Book to the local Apple store for what seemed to be a major issue. As I turned on the computer that Friday morning I got a flashing warning sign. Being that I get these warnings from time to time, it wouldn’t be any cause for alarm if that flashing warning wasn’t one that I could not, for the life of me, stop from blinking so furiously. It was enough to cause a seizure in any sizable life form. So I made my appointment and headed to the always dreaded mall.

When I arrived I was put in the able care of a gentleman who’s name escapes me. For the sake of story we’ll call him’Genius’. Genius listened intently to my dilemma before describing what kind of work would be needed. I left feeling confident that the problem would be fixed and I wouldn’t be losing years of music and digital images.

Geek-Within the week I  received a message that the problem was addressed and corrected and that my Mac was ready to be picked up. When I arrived Genius emerged from the back room with Mac in hand. He explained the issues before taking a deep breath and raising his brow to say “James, I don’t think I’ve ever seen that much media in all my time working here.” Being that I was well aware of how much music I had on iTunes and the overwhelming amount of digital images I had in Lightroom 4. I expected something would eventually happen. I just never thought that time would come so soon. I couldn’t help but think of digital version of the show ‘Hoarders”. It felt like an intervention of sorts.

Geek 2-In the weeks that followed I began going through old photo sessions and music events I’d shot in recent years. Each folder containing anywhere between two hundred to (gasp) seven hundred images. Over the years I’d painstakingly rated each and every images wit the provided *Star* system, which in hindsight, made it a lot easier to choose what to delete and what to keep. As I began the very arduous task of decided what to trash and what to keep I found myself making excuses while purging a scant amount of images from each folder. But as I began to regularly revisit these old folders I began feeling a weight lifted off my shoulders. This act of purging was becoming part of my daily mantra. Suddenly I found myself deleting thousands of images without hesitation. My years of studio and event photography have shown a lot of growth and there seemed to be no reason to hold onto the past while being constantly reminded of it’s mediocrity. Anything under **** stars was almost deleted. Geek 4- My Mac’s trash folder was beginning to look like a Staten Island landfill. One of the unexpected benefits of this task has been revisiting some of my older images I had stored on Aperture and giving them new life with the advanced features of Lightroom. Thus saving them from the trash heap while giving them new life. In the end I would advise anyone and everyone to put aside a little time here and there to junk those images that no longer suit you. It will help you better enjoy the ones you love.  Your hard drive will thank you. Posted are some of the images I may have overlooked before my recent purge. Enjoy. JD

To Print or Not to Print

Earlier today I received a somewhat shocking  email from my photo lab. Along with asking me to update my profile and,  perhaps remove some of the older folders that I won’t be making any reorders on. All seemingly routine reminders. The shocking came when they noted that I had not printed a thing in just under a year. “Wait? Are you kidding me?” I knew I hadn’t printed anything in a while and it was something that has been on the forefront of my mind. But a year? That was flat out nuts. I had some serious catching up to do.

Later in the day I went back to my computer and out of pure curiosity I took a look at my Aperture program. Aperture houses all my photography neatly in folders, all marked with dates and titles. I scrolled down to 2011 which hosted about 18,000 files. “Damn, some of these are pretty damn good.” “Certainly good enough to print.” Right?

The task, a daunting one at that, will be approached slowly. I’m hoping to be in a new home by Sping/Summer and I don’t want to be adding to the already endless amount of pictures, albums and frames I already have. But considering how hard drives crash and files get wiped out I should be careful to preserve the the best of the best.