12 Ways to Organize Data on a Computer as a Photographer

Taking good care of your data may not be as fun as taking the photos, but it’s just as important / photo by Jakob Owens

As a digital photographer, staying organized is key to success. You’re constantly juggling files, images, emails, and more. Without a good organizational system in place, you’ll find yourself wasting countless hours trying to locate the right image or important message.

There is no real best way to organize files on a Mac or another device, but you can follow certain pointers to have a better time.

1. Create Folders – Create separate folders for each project and save all related documents and images within that folder. This will make it easier to access them whenever needed instead of having multiple copies scattered across your hard drive.

2. Use Labels – Labeling your documents with specific keywords will make them easier to search through later on down the line. This will save you time sifting through mountains of files trying to locate what you need.

3. Utilize Software – There are many software programs available that can help streamline your workflow by organizing data automatically for you. For example, Adobe Bridge can be used to organize photos by date or keyword searches so they are easy to locate when needed.

4. Name Files Properly – As you save documents throughout the day, be sure to name them efficiently so they can easily be identified later on without having to read through it first or guess what it is about. Keep things simple but descriptive so they’re simple to spot in a search result list.

5. Establish a File Structure – Establishing an easy-to-follow file structure from the start will save you time and energy in trying to remember where everything is stored later when it comes time for retrieval or editing purposes. Think about how all information relates together and structure accordingly for future ease of use and accessibility needs no matter who’s accessing them.

6 . Automate Tasks – Automation tools such as IFTTT (If This Then That) can automate mundane tasks like sending emails every morning with any new photos from yesterday stored in certain areas of your computer . This allows less manual input from you, saving valuable time in the long run.

7. Backup Everything – Backup your data regularly using cloud storage services like Dropbox, Google Drive, iCloud or OneDrive. These services provide an extra layer of security if anything happens to go wrong with your computer, helping ensure none of your data is lost in case of emergency.

8. Utilize Version Control – Version control systems like GitHub keep track of changes made over time allowing easy rollback should something need undoing due to unforeseen circumstances. They also allow sharing of documents between users, making collaboration much easier than ever.

9. Invest In Storage Solutions – Investing in quality external hard drives, flash drives, SD cards, and other storage solutions helps keep data secure while allowing quick transfer between computers or devices as needed.

10. Use Search Tools – Search tools such as Windows Search and Spotlight help quickly locate files by keyword searches without having to manually look through endless directories. Of course, as we mentioned above, this only works if you have a logical, clear naming system AND stick to it!

11. Reference Spreadsheets – Spreadsheets are great organizational tools that allow sorting information alphabetically or chronologically making locating something much simpler than digging through masses of unorganized files.

12. Set Up Reminders – Setting up reminders either manually or using automated services will help ensure those important deadlines or client requests don’t get overlooked especially if life gets busy. If you prefer manual backup options, reminders for those are pretty useful too.


Keeping organized can seem overwhelming at times but following these 12 tips should help alleviate some stress while improving efficiency too.

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