iPhoneography Workflow Part 2: Device to Computer Transfer

In iPhoneography Workflow Part 1: Device to Device, we saw that the app Photo Sync will work to transfer photos from your iPhone or iPad to your computer, either Mac or PC, but that’s not what I do. In my iPhoneography workflow to transfer images via cable from devices to computer Picture folder I use something called Image Capture which is resident on the Mac.

Device to Computer Transfer

Device to Computer Transfer

You can also import photos directly from your device into iPhoto, Aperture, Bridge or Lightroom as well as from the aforementioned Photo Sync.

Collision on the Computer because of File Naming Conventions:

For seemless workflow, it would be great if each image had the same filename on all devices and on the computer but that doesn’t happen because the image numbering system on the iPad and the iPhone don’t stay in sync.  Why is that?

a.  For example, my iPhone has some 5,884 images on it numbered up to 5,884.  I transferred only some of these, let’s say 2,671,  to my iPad to edit, the minute I save a new version, that’s 2,672 on my iPad.  When I transfer image number 2,672 to my computer via Image Capture, there are two images with the same file name.  Image Capture solves this by adding a -1 to the end.  But my new file is now buried back with the original 2,672.  To find it requires that I sort by date and all of my edits are interspersed with images that are no longer current and are not what I expected to see.

b. Another example, my iPhone has the same 5,884 images on it and I transferred all of these to my iPad.  The minute I edit one photo on the iPad and do a save as it becomes 5,885.  The next photo that I shoot on the iPhone will also be 5,885.  Two files, same name. When imported through Image Capture one will have a -1 on it and at least the new ones will be near the top of the pile where I expect them to be.

c. Last example, my iPhone has the same 5,884 images on it and I transferred all of these to my iPad.  The minute I edit one photo on the iPad, it becomes 5,885.  I edit a few more up to 5,900 and then decide to transfer these over to my iPhone to make sure my file names stay in sync. This might work.  Have you tried it?

So why don’t you just delete the old photos?  There are a few reasons. Have you ever met a photographer who likes to throw away images whether on negatives or in files?  (I’ve met only one.) You may never get that image again. And your editing abilities may improve such that you can pull a silk purse out of that sow’s ear someday. Also, if you want to use a particular app to edit an image you have to go where that app lives, whether iPhone, iPad or computer so why get rid of an image anywhere?

I would love to know how you’ve solved this whole problem of keeping files in sync across devices! How do you keep your files sync’d between devices so that you can find them when you want to without a bunch of fuss and muss?

If you’re like me you’d like to know what’s next:

Image and writing by Jennifer Hartnett-Henderson ©2012