Back it up! October 13 2016, 0 Comments
Loosing files is a heartbreaking experience; I know, I’ve been there. That is why I am very diligent about backing up all of my files and you should be too. Don’t have a system yet? Here are some options:
Why? It is so easy to copy and paste folders full of your files to the drive and be done. You can even tell Apple’s Time Machine to copy everything for you and it will copy and maintain all of your files so it is the same as your main computer drive.
Why not? Initially hard drives are a big investment, and it is worth it to buy a reputable brand even if it costs a little bit more. Even with good brands, the drive will die over time and not knowing when is a ticking time bomb for your files unless you have them in an additional location. If you have multiple hard drives, it is a good idea to keep them in different locations in case of a fire or flood.
Why? You can set up a cloud anytime and they will store your files for you. Many Cloud sites have a fee over a certain data amount but they are typically very cheap. You just upload your photos, or you can set it to automatically update when you are connected to Wi-Fi.
Why not? Security is an issue with clouds because you never really know where your files are going and who has access to them. Having a good Internet connection is important; otherwise it’ll take forever.
Why? DVD’s are a very solid and reliable way of backing up files because it is a set it and forget it method. As long as you are using archival disks and safe holders, they should last.
Why not? Disks don’t come very large which means that burning all of your files onto disk can take a lot of time and organization. Also, computers don’t come with CD/DVD slots in them anymore; who would’ve thought! So if you have a newer computer, you’ll also need to buy a disk reader.
Here at Lumiere Photo, we back everything up onto a hard drive and also onto DVDs. We have books and books or client files on DVDs labeled in chronological order. It would also be a good idea for us to get another hard drive to keep in an off-site location in case of any disaster.
Personally, I use 3 hard drives. I use one as my working drive / immediate backup, and the other two are strictly for backup. Loosing files is super scary to me so I update them once a month and keep one of my files at my parents house to keep everything safe. I always use Time Machine because it is automatic and keeps track of what is already copied over to the drive.
How do you back up your files? We’d love to hear! Send us a message on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/100lumierephoto/
Before I did my research, I would save all of my files as JPEG’s. I didn’t know any better, and it was the only file type on the long list of “Save As” options that I could recognize. The “Save As” list is a bit intimidating but once you know the uses for each type, it becomes a lot easier and you’ll be able to save your images for your intended use.
Now I don’t mean to rat on JPEG images right off the bat, because they do have many good purposes. JPEG or Joint Photographic Experts Group, compresses the files and is universally the most supported file type. JPEGs are great for sharing on social media, e-mails, web, and photo kiosks. You would rarely have troubles with the computer reading the format.
The downside to JPEG is that it is compressed and lossy. This means that when you save an image to a JPEG, the file is made smaller and information is lost. Furthermore, every time you open that file after saving it, information is lost and overtime there will be a significant quality degradation, which makes it really bad when your export is not the final export.
If you have a camera that can shoot in RAW, always always always shoot in camera RAW! RAW files record everything that the camera sensor reads and are digital negatives so they have flexibility and depth to them afterword. The best part about it is that if you mess up, the original pixels will always be there to go back to.
RAW files are not working files, they are huge, and are not very compatible, but they are good to save in a hard drive for safekeeping if you ever need to go back.
TIFF or Tagged Image File Format is the file that we like best here at Lumiere Photo. It is uncompressed and lossless. It is great for saving a working file because it holds the full size of the image and will also keep layers that you have made in Photoshop. That way you can easily go back into the program and keep working on it later.
PSD or Photoshop Document is very similar to a TIFF in the way that it is uncompressed and lossless. The only major difference is that PSD files can only be used with Adobe programs and are not supported elsewhere.
PNG is a lossless file type that is mostly used for large images online. GIF is a compressed file that is mostly used for small images or animation online. Large Document Format, BMP, Compu Serve GIF, Dicom, IFF, PCX, Pixar, Portable Bit Map, Scitex CT, Targa, and others that are more specific to where it can be opened.
There are a lot of different file types but if you know what suits your workflow best it becomes much less confusing. Just remember to keep a lossless version of the file so that when you want to print it big you can.
Have more questions? Call and we’ll chat: 585-461-4447