How Best to manage photos on a PC now that an iPad is added to the mix

Started 9 months ago | Questions thread
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CuriousMark
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How Best to manage photos on a PC now that an iPad is added to the mix
9 months ago

I have been using Lightroom 3 to manage photos on my Windows 7 PC.  It works pretty well, but I layered it atop an existing My Pictures folder that is not well organized and has many sub-folders with differently organized content within them.  We purchased an iPad for Christmas and are still trying to get used to how to use it.  One major thing I noticed is that it only goes one layer deep with folder structure.  So my wife's many different subject oriented foto folders withing the top level folder named after her show up on the iPad as a single gigantic set of pictures that are not even grouped together.  Worse, now that I am shooting with a DSLR and saving both JPG and Raw files to Lightroom, those photos show up twice on the iPad since it treats the RAW and JPG as if they are different photos.  My wife hates this and I now have a mission to "fix" it.

My thinking is that now is the time to just reorganize everything and do it in Lightroom.

My thinking is to create a new folder in the Pictures Library named Raw Pictures and then create a new Lightroom catalog and do a move import of everything from the existing My Pictures to the new place.  Then using Lightroom create Albums and publish them back to the now empty my pictures folder for syncing with the iPad and my Android phone. By putting all the albums in folders at the top level in My Pictures they will fit nicely with the iPad and only be JPGs so the duplication of RAW and JPG will be gone.  Also these will only be the "keeper" photos with crops and edits done so they will be much more presentable than what we have now.

Does this plan even make sense?  I don't want to go down this path if it is going to be a fools errand.

While I am about this reorganization I hope to take the best albums and put them on a photo sharing site to make them available to family and friends and catalog some or our travels.  I see the iPad has a "photo stream", Lightroom can publish to Flickr, smugMug, and Facebook; friends suggest Picasa and I note that my BluRay player support Picasa and not the others.  My phone being android is probably Picasa friendly.  I also want to be able to send photos to Costco easily for printing.  This is just too many options.  So to simplify, between Picasa. Flickr and the iCloud photostream which is likely to best integrate with the PC, iPad, Android phone.family member Kindle Fires, and general web browsing?  The focus is on easy setup and browsing for the different users, as opposed to features.

All advice is welcome, including RTFM which I am doing with the iPad now.  I also have the Scott Kelby book for Lightroom that I am starting to go through.  But it does not have much to say one way or the other on my idea of separating the working photos directory from the published results, at least in the first chapter, which is as far as I have gotten.

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