Author Topic: Little anoyance -big problem  (Read 8095 times)

Offline Pavel

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Little anoyance -big problem
« on: July 08, 2006, 09:06:57 AM »
This one is one of those small things that turn out to rob you of much more time that you could first imagine.
First off I shoot a lot of motor-sport  and so I come back with fairly large volumes of shots.
As I get to understand more and more about the features and power of Photomechanic I am looking forward to making my workflow less convoluted.
I have two issues, one I think could be a feature upgrade recommendation and the other I'm not sure about if I'm doing something wrong.

I am trying to get away from using Aperture in my workflow.  I ingest, rename and ITPC my shots in PM, then move them to  Capture one for processing.  Then I feel the need to put them into aperture because I need to sort my pictures by plate number so that I can rename them in a way that I can upload them to photo-shelter and know which folder to move them to so that I have only plates 01-99, 100-199 and so forth put away in the appropriate folder.  Aperture does what PM makes imposible and that is to easily keyword my shots.  THe big deal about aperture here is that I can use the arrow key to move from picture to picture and in less than one second hit a key to put the plate range into the keyword field. I also need to put in Expert or Novice. 

I have just discovered more about PM's rename capability and could completely bypass Aperture if it were not for the fact that when you call up the ITPC interface to keyword these the little window for the preview is so small that I can not read the plate numbers on most shots.  So my main request is "Could the interface be changed so that it could be expanded to full screen and to make the preview much bigger in the IPTC utility"?  Further refinements that would help tremendously would be to be able to set an option to not have to use the CMD-] keystroke to save and move on - rather to simply have the right arrow do the job. ( after 3500 times my hand really hates the gymnastics and my brain hurts :))

Lastly on this part (and very minor) it would be fantastic to have keyword replacement able to be put in as a keystroke rather than a  set of words surrounded by "\".  THat way I could tap CMD-3 for example and have "Group 300-399Expert" and CMD-55 put in "Group 400-499Novice".  Come to thing of it ... that is really minor ... so I can just get used to \55\ ... but if it were easy ..... :)

THe second part is that I would rather not have these identifiers which I use for renaming purposes with variables - put in as keywords.  I only do that because I have to use aperture for now and keywords are the fastest way.  I think that these numbers are best put in as Captions.  THis is my second problem.  When I  move from picture to picture saving the numbers in the caption field, on each new picture the cursor moves down three lines.  I then have to move the mouse and move it to the beginning each frame - or live with the number three lines down.  The problem here is that for each line the renaming inserts a dash.  Then my renamed files look like "---20E-062114.jpg".  Could it be made to be sticky?  Where ever the cursor started in the last field ... to have it there when you move to the next shot?  Or to simply default to the very top?

A larger preview area (huge please :)) is what makes it impossible for me to use only PM for my whole workflow and the other points would save me much time and hand pain.  I'm crossing my fingers for refinements in theses areas and as always - THANK YOU for what you guys do!

Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2006, 12:15:39 PM »
Pavel,

It sounds like to me that you are fighting with Photo Mechanic.  Here is how I would solve your plate issue.

First use the Preview window and go through your shots.  You can type a single number to color class your photos.  Use '1' to indicate plate range 0-99, '2' to indicate plate range 100-199, etc.  Also at this point, you could be deleting the duds.

Once you have all of your pictures categorized by color class (which indicates your plate range) you can filter by color class (use the Color Class Widget at the bottom right corner of the screen), or select by color class (CMD-Ctrl-1, CMD-Ctrl-2, etc.)

Now you have a plate range selected.  Use the IPTC Stationery Pad to bulk assign the plate range into the IPTC Metadata.  I would use something like Category, but you could use Keywords.  Put the Expert or Novice, etc. into another field.

Then when you rename, use the variables from the fields that you chose like {cat} for the Category field, etc.

I think that would be pretty efficient.  You should be able to read the numbers on the vehicles quite well in the Preview window.  You could even do the color classing with the Slideshow.

As for the thumbnail in the IPTC Info, I have made a change in the next version that allows you to click and hold on the thumbnail and you'll get a much larger preview.

HTH,

-Kirk

Offline Pavel

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2006, 06:00:34 PM »
Kirk ... so simple .... no wonder I missed it.  I just talked to my partner and we have decided that we are going to put in the actual plate numbers rather than the range for future projects.  That means I will wait for the update so that I can see a larger preview but will do it as you have just mentioned until then.  Any chance that we could get a larger preview to stay so that I don't have to do all this clicking?  Full screen itpc would be perfect, absolutely perfect if it had about a 250 or better pixel preview.

Thanks!

Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2006, 08:41:43 PM »
Kirk ... so simple .... no wonder I missed it.  I just talked to my partner and we have decided that we are going to put in the actual plate numbers rather than the range for future projects.  That means I will wait for the update so that I can see a larger preview but will do it as you have just mentioned until then.  Any chance that we could get a larger preview to stay so that I don't have to do all this clicking?  Full screen itpc would be perfect, absolutely perfect if it had about a 250 or better pixel preview.

OK, what key would we use?  It can't be something easy to remember like 'Z' because typing a 'Z' would both bring up the zoomed thumbnail and type a 'Z' into whatever text field you happened to be in.  And remember we would want the same key to work on Mac OS X and Windows.

-Kirk

Offline Pavel

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2006, 05:28:54 AM »
How about the tilde key or a key combo like command-option-Z if it is to make the larger preview toggle sticky?

Now that I've had some sleep (I've been working at the computer captioning and editing a job for several long days) I marvel how I didn't think of your suggested work ways myself (blush).  I'm so used to using two colors to code shots for moving to folders that I just stayed in that mind set and didn't think.  Your approach uses the power and flexibility of Photomechanic to more of it's potential. I first tried it when it was version two.  It's incredible how the flexibility has grown and the features increased since then.  This forum is invaluable, as Rob Galbraiths used to be. 

Off topic here but you know, I think that Aperture is a very innovative program and very powerful.  The one thing it is not however is flexible.  It simply works the way Apple believes it should and you can either adapt or die in frustration.  I suspect it will always be that way with a product from a huge company.  So while it can be a very powerful way to speed up ones workflow if you can work with it - if you need it to work with you it's a whole different thing.  Net result is that I can't wait to get away from it!  That flexibility to work the way one needs or wants to and the sheer speed is what sets PhotoMechanic apart.

Fantastic.

Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2006, 07:08:34 AM »
How about the tilde key or a key combo like command-option-Z if it is to make the larger preview toggle sticky?

Command-Option-Z would work since it wouldn't type anything.  Tilde wouldn't work since it would type characters.  Command-~ (or really Command-` since I don't think people would want to have to hold down the shift key too) would work.  Oh, but wait, Command-` is used to switch between open windows on Mac OS X.  So we can't use that.

Command-Option-Z is looking good and we would make it Alt-Z on Windows which is easy to type.

Quote from: Pavel
Now that I've had some sleep (I've been working at the computer captioning and editing a job for several long days) I marvel how I didn't think of your suggested work ways myself (blush).  I'm so used to using two colors to code shots for moving to folders that I just stayed in that mind set and didn't think.  Your approach uses the power and flexibility of Photomechanic to more of it's potential. I first tried it when it was version two.  It's incredible how the flexibility has grown and the features increased since then.  This forum is invaluable, as Rob Galbraiths used to be. 

Off topic here but you know, I think that Aperture is a very innovative program and very powerful.  The one thing it is not however is flexible.  It simply works the way Apple believes it should and you can either adapt or die in frustration.  I suspect it will always be that way with a product from a huge company.  So while it can be a very powerful way to speed up ones workflow if you can work with it - if you need it to work with you it's a whole different thing.  Net result is that I can't wait to get away from it!  That flexibility to work the way one needs or wants to and the sheer speed is what sets PhotoMechanic apart.

Fantastic.

Thanks.  Photo Mechanic's philosophy is to give people tools and options, but not dictate how or in what order they are used.  Photo Mechanic is only going to get better and faster over time.

-Kirk

Offline nharnik

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2006, 09:15:31 AM »
Pavel,

I think I know how to solve your need for a larger preview in the IPTC utility-
 
In my Windows version of PM, (and I assume it is the same with the mac version), the preview window and the IPTC window are syncronized, that is, when you move from one image to the next by hitting the "Save &" or the ">" button in the IPTC utility, the preview window will follow to display the current image being captioned.

Thus, all you need to do is fit the Preview window and the IPTC utility windows side by side on the monitor, and presto, you get to caption your images while seeing a large preview.

Monitor too small? Perhaps your graphics card supports a second monitor? Then display the Preview window full size on one monitor and have the IPTC utility on the other monitor.
rgds, Nati

Offline Pavel

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2006, 10:06:36 AM »
Nati you sir are brilliant!  Yes indeed that does work (who would have though :)) and is the timely solution for my dillema.

I'd like to buy a virtual beer for you, sir!

Offline Kirk Baker

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Re: Little anoyance -big problem
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2006, 04:29:01 PM »
How about the tilde key or a key combo like command-option-Z if it is to make the larger preview toggle sticky?

It's going to be Ctrl-Z on Mac OS X and likely Alt-Z on Windows.

On Mac OS X Command-Option-Z does not send a KeyUp event so there would be no way to get back out of Zoom mode.  Ctrl-Z sends both KeyDown and KeyUp events so it works fine for this purpose.  I still have to test Alt-Z on Windows.

-Kirk