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Exporting to DVD + orgisational stuff #1
Dave Robinson's picture
by Dave Robinson
April 10, 2013 - 11:43pm

Have just about finished my first wedding (700+ shots) on Aperture and want to burn a disc for the clients. I have a number of questions, but first some background;

I have created numerous albums within the project, some numbered to keep them in order eg. 1 Venue, 2 Before Ceremony, 3 Ceremony, 4 Signing Register, etc.
To do this I created stacks and used Josephs' multi pass star rating method varying from 1 - 5 stars using 3 as useable for the finished DVD.
I created the albums using the stacks, however the albums contain ALL the contents of the stacks, not just 3 stars and better (around 300 images).
I intend to create a slide show as well.

1. How can I/should I have created the albums just with the 3 star and better shots while still retaining the lesser shots somewhere for future use?

2. How can I burn a DVD of the wedding project while still keeping the organisational stucture of the albums (+ slide show)? I have read that I can create a 'burn' folder in 'Finder' but I would like to know how to do it effciently?

3. I presume exporting full size jpegs would be best in this case?

4. I still haven't sorted out my Library, am looking to use one of Josephs' suggestions as to Projects; Weddings, Clients, Family; Year, etc. With a main Library on an external drive (mirrored to a second drive) and 'current' stuff in a Library on my Mac Book and backed up to a LaCie portable drive (am open to any suggestions/alternative ideas).

Currently my images are in a very rudimentary file system by date (eg. 20120328) in 'Pictures' which are mostly RAW/unprocessed (waiting for me to get organised). My original thinking after a little research but before using Aperture, was to import 'Masters' into the appropriate Library, process them and convert them to jpegs stored alongside the Masters for quick access if needed without the need to process/export each time.

However, I heard in one of Josephs' tutorials that one advantage of Aperture was not needing to store finished jpegs. So my question is: to export/convert to jpeg or not?

Walter Rowe's picture
by Walter Rowe
April 13, 2013 - 2:52am

Images do not live in albums. Images live in projects. Albums are only virtual collections (groupings) of images. The actual images remain in the project.

I would place the entire wedding in a single project. I would then apply a star rating to all 700+ images in the project. Inside the project, I would create an album for each part of the service as you stated above (1 - Venue, 2 - Before, 3 - During, 4 - Signing, etc). Next I would select the project, set the view to thumbnail view, and filter the view to only display the image thumbnails with a 3-star or better rating (using filter button in top-right corner). Finally, I would select the image thumbnails associated with each portion of the service, and I would drag-n-drop them into their album associated with their respective part of the service.

Using this method I will have an album for each portion of the service that only contains the images that are rated at three stars or better. Remember that the images are really stored in the project. The albums are just virtual collections (groupings) of the images in the project. The images have not actually moved down into the albums.

If you select the project and disable the filter, you will notice that all 700+ images are there. If you select one of the albums, you will notice that only those images from that part of the service and that have 3+ star rating are displayed.

There are more elaborate ways to do this, but this is the simplest.

For example, you could apply a keyword to each image that associates it with one or more parts of the service (eg. venue, before, during, signing, reception, leaving). You could then create separate smart albums that look for 3+ stars and one of those keywords. (eg. 3+ stars and keyword = “venue”, 3+ stars and keyword = “during”). Smart albums are powerful because they are “dynamic”. If you change the keyword for an image from “during” to “venue”, the image will move from the “during” smart album to the “venue” smart album. If an image has both “venue” and “before”, it would show up in both smart albums. If you raise the star rating of an image to 3 or above, it will show up in the appropriate smart album. If you lower the star rating below 3 stars, it will disappear from all the smart albums.

Walter Rowe's picture
by Walter Rowe
April 13, 2013 - 3:08am

To burn your DVD you will need to set up a Finder folder structure how you want the DVD to be organized. Once you apply all your adjustments to your images, rate them, create your albums by portion of the service, and add the requisite images to each album, you can select each album one at a time and export all the images therein to the appropriate folder you created in Finder. Once you have all your Finder folders populated, you can select the top-level folder and burn that to DVD. It will burn the entire folder hierarchy onto the DVD just as you have it laid out.

It is up you as to what size JPGs you provide the bride/groom. If you want them to have the full-size JPGs so they can create their own prints, that is what you would export to the Finder folders.

I would use Folders to organize your Library. I have a folder called TRAVEL, a folder called MUSIC, a folder called PORTRAITS, a folder called FAMILY, etc. Inside the folders are projects. Inside the projects are albums and smart albums.

I store only the master raw files. I can recreate exported JPGs at any time.

Dave Robinson's picture
by Dave Robinson
April 13, 2013 - 11:48pm


I appreciate your thoughts and comments

I had done as you described in your 2nd paragraph with one extra step.

I kept the images in sequence and then created stacks of: Venue, Before, During, Signing, etc. I then rated the images in each stack and used the filter to select 3 star or better and then put them in appropriate albums.

But, ALL the images in the stack were placed in the album!

Am finding problems also with trying to select images from these albums for a slideshow.

I rated all the images for the slideshow with a colour.

If I open the project and open all stacks then select the labled images and drag to a slideshow I end up with 500 images in the slideshow, not the 100 I labled.

If I open an album individually and select the labled images - all images from the album appear in the slideshow but only one will play!

I suspect I’m missing something simple, like maybe I shouldn’t stack prior to placing in albums????

I could start over but I’m trying to get things sussed out so I can refine my workflow for future jobs.

I understand everything else you say and have a handle on the Finder files etc. just not why I’m having difficulty with selecting images as they currently are.

I welcome any further input.


P.S. Do you find it takes much extra time/work to recreate exported jpegs?'s picture
April 14, 2013 - 12:00am

David:Not sure if this would be a factor but do you have primary only switched on or off?

Thomas Emmerich's picture
by Thomas Emmerich
April 14, 2013 - 3:07am

Stacks are meant to keep similar images grouped together when you only want one of them to be used. For example, you have 5 images shot of a group and only one of them is needed but you don’t want to delete any of them. You stack them and make the best one the stack pick. Once you’ve made the stack pick, you can close the stack and only the stack pick will be shown. As long as they are stacked, they all will move when you place the stack pick in any album or move/copy to another project. When you export or share a stacked image, only the stack pick will be exported/shared unless you open the stack and select all the images inside.

There can be more than one stack pick. Inside the project is the first stack pick. But if you place the image in an album or book or slideshow project you can have a different stack pick than what is in the project.

If you want to separate them you must unstack them.

You wanted quick access to JPEGs of your adjusted RAW images. You can do this using Previews. Set the Preview size in Aperture preferences to the size you would want. Whenever you adjust an image, Aperture creates this preview using all the adjustments you’ve applied. You can drag the image from Aperture’s browser into any other application and the preview JPEG will be used. This is also the file that would be used if you use the Media browser inside iMovie, FCP X, or any other app that can import images using the Open file browser window.

The downside to using previews is if you set the preview size to original size, your library will bloat with the added file data. But the convenience is you’d never need to export to get a copy of a JPEG. Just drag it out.


Dave Robinson's picture
by Dave Robinson
April 14, 2013 - 9:54pm

Thanks everyone, It’s been helpful.

‘Primary only’ on both viewer and edit toolbars was off.

I’m statring to see that I’ve been using stacks like a folder within the browser rather than keeping near identical shots together. I can see I need to rate and maybe keyword the images first then and maybe use stacks temporarily for similar shots. Then i can create albums within the project and then move rated images into them.

I think I’ll duplicate the project, unstack everything and drag and drop into appropriate albums.

One question for the next wedding/big project; instead of using stacks as I have done (like folders within the browser) is there another way to easily and temporarily break the project down to bite sized chunks while rating etc. so I can come & go and go back to it instead of having 700+ shots staring at me all at once!


Walter Rowe's picture
by Walter Rowe
April 15, 2013 - 8:12pm

is there another way to easily and temporarily break the project down to bite sized chunks while rating etc. so I can come & go and go back to it instead of having 700+ shots staring at me all at once!

Before applying any ratings, you can create the albums for each portion of the event, place the corresponding images into their respective albums, and then select one album at a time and do your ratings there. After you have rated all the images in an album, you can change the view from “show all” to only show those below a certain rating. Then select all those images and delete them from the album. That will leave you with an album containing only images equal or above a given rating.

Dave Robinson's picture
by Dave Robinson
April 15, 2013 - 8:27pm

That makes heaps of sense. Bit by bit I’m getting a handle on things.

Thanks heaps Walter,


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