When you have setup your folder structure, you are ready to move to the next step.
When you copy your photos from your memory card to you PC you will end up with the files on your PC that still have the names as provided by your camera. (ex. img_12345.JPG) Now that is a useful name, isn’t it? Nope! We can do better.
Basically it is similar to setting up your folder-structure. You should name your file in such a way it makes sense to you. Again, amongst you there are very exeptional and gifted people who will be able to memorize all the numbers linked to the images, but again. I’m not one of them, and I need more logic in my file-names.
So when I import my photos, I use a template that sets the filenames of my photos while they are being imported. There are many programs in the market available that will be able to do this for you. And there are also programs that can do this after you have imported your files (I used to use ACDSee, which had a batch rename function.)
At the moment I’m using Adobe Lightroom for importing my photos from my memory card and this program offers a rename functionality during import. You have to realise that it is a batch rename (whole bunch of files in one single go), so it won’t offer you the possibility to rename the files one by one on import (but you can still do this afterwards). My advice is not to rename every single file. By doing so you will loose the overview. So let’s say you went on a trip to the zoo on a sunny day during the summer of 2007. Then you could create a folder in ‘Days out’ named ‘Zoo-summer-2007’ and in this folder you store your photos which you can name ‘zoo-summer-2007-###.jpg’ where the hashes ‘#’ stand for a number. This number will be auto generated by most program which offer the rename functionallity.
Okay, you still have a system based on numbers within this folder but at least you will be able to find you set of photos that were made during the summer of 2007 in the zoo.
But for this there is also a sollution, if you use the right program. Keywords! More on this in the next article