When I first started shooting digitally, I didn’t delete any pictures. I’m not sure how this started but, as time went by, I found old shots that benefited from more modern processing and software capabilities. It was sometimes surprising how a shot that previously I didn’t think was any use could actually be turned into something better.
Of course, this was a tiny proportion of the shots. Most of the crappy shots were still crappy shots whatever the software that was used. Being horribly out of focus or even something taken accidentally like the floor or the inside of a camera bag is never going to be fixed with some miraculous software. However, for a while storage was cheap so I didn’t care.
At various times additional drives have been added to the computer and the back up NAS has been rebuilt with ever larger drives. (I have lots of spare drives if ever you need one!) The problem is that I keep taking ever more pictures and the cameras have ever larger file sizes. Besides, how many pictures do I actually need? Each time I re-shoot a subject I get a few new shots that are keepers and some of the previous shots of that subject go down the priority list. Am I ever going to need a thousand different shots of a Strike Eagle?
Consequently, I have finally grown up. I am getting rid of stuff. (I should point out that I do have BluRay backups of everything made early on so, if I really wanted to, I might be able to drag out any file!) I am now getting brutal with stuff as soon as it is shot. Meanwhile, I am progressively going through a lot of older stuff to get rid of the crap. This is a two stage process. First I am going through to take out shots that are clearly not good – blurry, poor focus etc. If I spot that half of the subject is missing at the same time those will go. However, zooming in to spot the duds sometimes means you don’t see that the shot is also crap.
Those will get picked up in the second phase. Then I shall assume the shots are basically useable but remove the ones that just look bad as well as weed out the obvious duplicate. However, phase one is taking a long time so phase two will come later. Also, this is a great crappy winter day job and now it is summer. I am spending more time doing fun things.
Will anyone else see the benefit of this. Certainly not the hard drive manufacturers but hopefully I will. The shutter actuations on the cameras won’t reduce but at least I will try and make life easier for Lightroom!