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Screening Images for IQ - Keepers

By Steve Watson

Most people on this website probably do not even screen their images, but simply download all the files on their CF card to their Hard Drive, use what they want and leave the rest to fester, unloved and unused for posterity. Others may use Adobe Bridge or Adobe Lightroom to “have a look”, so to speak. I have tried many Browsers, but settled on a product called BreezeBrowser about two years ago. It is a fantastic bit of software and if you believe the blurb, is written by a photographer for photographers. The reality is that it is good and in my opinion, better than most out there in the Market. So why do I like this product? In a nutshell:

• It is very easy to use
• The acquisition and production of JPEG Thumbnails from a CF Card is very, very fast (important when you use a Canon EOS 5D MkII where the average RAW file is ~ 30 MB’s and you shoot a lot of frames like me)
• The conversions for viewing are A1. Believe me, sometimes I wish the finished processed image looked as good
• It DOES NOT make those horrid little copies to your Hard Drive that most of the other Browsers do, filling up your PC or Mac with yet more junk
• The RAW Converter in this software on its own is worth having. It is good and just about all DSLR’s worth owning are covered
• The price is fair and reasonable for what you get i.e. it is good value for money

Wokflow

When I get home at the end of a day out, I slot the CF Card(s) into my PC or Card Reader and open BreezeBrowser. The methodology is as follows:
1. Click on the “Open a File” icon top left in the Tool Bar
2. Locate and Double click on the drive containing you CF Card. Within a few seconds all the Thumbnails will appear in the Thumbnail View
3. You now want to scrutinise the individual images for IQ and Tag the initial “Keepers”

There are two methods that you can use for this:

Method A – Using the “Main View”
• Main View is the fourth icon from the top left in the Tool Bar. Click on this icon
• Click on View in the Tool Bar at the very top of the page and select Magnifier, High Quality and Show Focus Points (useful for non-Zeiss lenses)
• When you hover over any part of the image with the Magnifier you will be able to instantly see if that part of your image is sharp
• If the image seems to be a Keeper on first pass, click on the red Tick, the sixth icon from the left in the Tool Bar. This image is now tagged as a Keeper
• Click on the Right Arrow in the Tool Bar to move to the next frame. Repeat the IQ check and tag if a Keeper
• DO NOT delete anything at this stage unless it is clearly rubbish, in which case clicking on the Red Cross (the thirteenth icon in the Tool Bar from the left) will delete this frame from the CF Card permanently
• When you have viewed and tagged all the images, return to the Thumbnail View. You will be able to see all the images on the card including those Tagged
• Go to Edit and Select Tagged. Only the tagged images will now be displayed
• Click on File and Move to Folder
• The tagged images will be moved from the CF Card to the pre-prepared and uniquely coded Folder on your Hard Drive
• Follow the safe procedure for removing the CF Card from your PC or Mac

I keep two small plastic (non-ferrous) boxes with lids on my desk, one labelled In Bond and the second labelled For Re-formatting. At this point in time, keep the data on the CF Card until you have processed the Keepers and are 100% happy with what you have got. When you are happy with the processed images, move the card to the second box For Re-formatting and re-format the card at your leisure. No crap, no wasted HD space. Be ruthless. This has worked well for me over the last two years.

For more information on BreezeBrowser Pro see: http://www.breezesys.com/

Part II to follow

SAW 28/07/2010
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