Saturday, February 18, 2012

Flotsam on a sea of photos (major rant)

I just now posted this to my alumni group, but also figured I'd post it here, to the world at large, because I think it will generate some comments, some interest, and maybe some of you can relate.

I'm not looking necessarily for suggestions. I just need a place where I can grouse, gripe, and gritch to people who completely understand where I'm coming from.

I am awash in photos and have officially lost control.

I use photos for teaching purposes, gallery purposes, stock photo purposes, for a new "mystery project" I'm working on, for collage work, for photomontage work, and more.

I have photos that are framed and prepped for the web. Photos prepped for Alamy. Photos prepped for Fine Art America. Photos prepped for PDF lessons. And more.

I have texture backgrounds that I use in my photomontages. I have all sorts of weird bits and bob that I'm using for a "mystery project." I have photos that I take of parts of my physical collages that I would like to use in my photomontages. Photos of handwriting, of pages from Japanese books, old ads, of my own paint blops, scratched metal, rust, and more.

And then there are all my photomontages, files that are huge because of all the layers involved.

In addition, I've got photos that I shoot on a daily basis, photos that I back up onto DVDs, put into envelopes, put into large rubber tubs and store in the garage. Once backed up, those photos are then distributed to various directories on various drives -- photos of numbers, letters, drive-bys, SanDiego/Downtown, SanDiego/Little Italy, buoys, crabpots, fishing nets, etc.

Because of various drive failures, filled-up drives, backups made of backups, my files have become scattered, over-duplicated, and cumbersome. I've been gradually moving things over to a 2TB external drive, then hooked up another 2TB drive, but just got a warning from an HP diagnostic hardware scan that there's something WRONG with that latest 2TB drive, so I'm removing the files from it in preparation for doing some diagnostic stuff to it. The drive works, but HP says DANGER DANGER.

I've got 10 external drives right now, each one bigger than the next as I've purchased them over the years. I can plug in maybe five or so at one time. The others are sitting around my office, plugged into nothing because I'm now out of electrical outlets and USB ports.

Can ANYone relate to this? Please tell me I'm not alone in my total frustration, if not despair.

I am thinking of purchasing three 3TB drives to add to the two 2TB drives I've already got. That way I can keep all five hooked up and running, where the files I need are immediately accessible and I know which files are where. No need to move furniture, crawl around on the floor, get out the vacuum because dust bunnies have morphed into dust elephants, and then put things back, INCLUDING the various panels of plywood necessary to keep the freakin' CAT from mucking about among the cords and cables.

So there you have it. A glimpse into my little world of insanity. Can you relate? Do you think my solution is feasible?

Carol "re-thinking her career choice" Leigh, who now thinks she needs a bigger monitor . . .


Anonymous said...

Sit down, take several deep breaths count to 20, have a glass of wine and slow down if you can and realize you work is loved and appreciated and if lost can be duplicated again even better with you talent-dave o

Jim said...

I think it was Dorothy Parker who said "You can never be too rich, too thin or have a big enough monitor." It was something like that ....

I can relate to your rant. I have a 6Tb Drobo with 4 internal drives. I sold a photo to a national publication recently and had to go find the original from 2001. Spent more time looking than I made.

Capt. Kirk

Russ said...

Carol, I feel your pain. I've been unsuccessfully looking for a magic solution for years. I wish you success on resolving your rant.

Carol Leigh said...

Rant over. I ended up buying a 4-bay Drobo and four 2TB drives, which will give me 5.44TB of data storage. All in one place. Big note of thanks to the folks in my student Alumni Group who took the time to educate me and who did so with grace and alacrity. Stay tuned, however. I fear Lightroom and an attendant rant may appear sometime in the future.

Jan Hagan said...

Glad you bought the drobo. That will solve the problem for the time beings. I guess that is why lightroom is so popular with many photographers.

Sam Hipkins said...

Ah such is the life of a creative person: big, big files and not enough storage space. But just think of the storage need the movie Avatar had. With all that special effects and 3D stuff, it required over 1 petabyte of storage. That's the equivalent of 500 2TB hard drives. At least you're not at that level...yet.

Diane Miller said...

Oh, I can SO relate! Hang in there -- your images are worth all the trouble.