Clearing Out The LR Catalog - Over 150,000 images in there

gryphon1911

All-Pro
Location
Central Ohio, USA
Real Name
Andrew
So, I've decided that I hold on to stuff for way too long. between the business shots and personal images, I've accumulated over 150,000 images in the lightroom catalog.

Honestly, everything runs fine...but there are images in there from 2008 for events that should be purged and experimental shots I did while learning new things....but like way too many that it doesn't make sense.

So, as the weather is turning toward winter, I've decided to turn on the library filter and go year by year and purge out the images that don't make any sense to keep. All those string of 100 continuous shots of a kid catching a football....well, I should have culled those out long ago. It will be interesting to see how small the catalog is and how many images I'll have left in the catalog proper once I get through 2020!


Just going through 2009, I've gotten the image count down to 142,872!

1604850276854.png
 

gryphon1911

All-Pro
Location
Central Ohio, USA
Real Name
Andrew
I always have that fear of “needing” or wanting that shot later. Some of these are 10 years old and I’ve not returned to them.

I just need be better / more aggressive on the keepers. I think every year, when I go into my self imposed social media blackout that i use that time to go through the previous years images and clean them out.

Better processes make for a smoother system overall. Even a great set of processes needs tweaked from time to time.
 
Last edited:

christilou

Legend
Location
Sunny Frimley
I have almost 19,000 at the moment but this is only the sparse collection. I have two back up hard drives with the rest! Having the A9 with it's burst rate gives me far too many to cull. Trying to be a bit more sensible by waiting a few days and then being ruthless!
 

gryphon1911

All-Pro
Location
Central Ohio, USA
Real Name
Andrew
UPDATE:

Since Nov 8, I've gotten it down to 113,803.

That's from 2002 through 2015. I still have another pass to go through 2015 before moving on to 2016.

Some additional tips for the lightroom users out there to increase its speed.
  • When in the Library module, minimize all the accordion categories on the right. You don't realize how much it impacts the speed of previews when it has to load that information for every image you are clicking on.
    1606670146752.png
  • Instead of selecting a bunch of images and deleting, I found putting them into a reject status, then doing a delete is more efficient.
  • The smaller the preview, the quicker the loading of the library grid.
 
I gave up culling years ago - too much time for too little freed hard drive space. I just buy more hard drives. Right now, I've got two, mirrored 8TB drives with photos from 7 Lightroom catalogs.
 
Location
Boston Burbs
Real Name
David
I did this at the beginning of the year. I have 2 main catalogs, one for Pro and one for Personal. My Pro catalog is just around 208k.

My personal catalog went from around 60k to 14.5k. It took a couple months, but it was worth while.
 

gryphon1911

All-Pro
Location
Central Ohio, USA
Real Name
Andrew
I’ve never done it, but it makes sense probably for me to have 2 separate catalogs. I’ll look into it and if it is or too difficult to cull them out and separate, I might give that a go.
 
Location
Boston Burbs
Real Name
David
I’ve never done it, but it makes sense probably for me to have 2 separate catalogs. I’ll look into it and if it is or too difficult to cull them out and separate, I might give that a go.
I do have some images in both. It's probably only 1-2% of what's in the Pro catalog, so much more manageable for web galleries and samples.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
Honestly, it’s not really the space, it’s more the time rummaging through images I’ll never use when I am looking for something I need. Especially the sports images.
Thats where getting the tags done helps a lot. I havent, and I still don’t. And yet it would save so much time and effort. Its a bit like the difference between hanging up that shirt and dropping it on the bed or chair.
 

kyteflyer

~@¿@~
Location
Newcastle, Australia
Real Name
Sue
After all the discussion in this thread and the reminders to self that I have been an idiot about photographs... in the early days, "people" kept saying to me never to delete anything... on looking through my swag, i find that there is an awful lot of completely useless and irretrievable stuff, which should be deleted forthwith... but Photos is being difficult about what it will allow. I've been using Photostream because 5Gb of iCloud photos is crazy and I don't want more than 5Gb normally for other things... and like many of you I have a shedload on an external drive... so I thought I might reinstall Lightroom so I can deal with it all, but then decided to go with the now Ancient (but still working on my High Sierra MacBook) Aperture.

I've nearly finished importing everything I want from the external and with some horror note that many photos have huge numbers of versions... I could easily end up with very few photos at all. and I never had the numbers that Andrew had :)

With this install of Aperture, i have not activated iCloud in any way... not photostream and not iCloud photos. So the multiple duplicate issue should get sorted PDQ. I *might* (after I have finished the cull) activate photo stream again but only to receive, not to send. (so I'd be getting things in from my iPhone and iPad but not sending to either...not sure if thats doable, never tried)

Once its all settled... keywords.
ARGHHHHHH!
 

Latest posts

Latest threads

Top Bottom