Roses are red, violets are purple, clicking the pics makes you sweet as maple syrple....Hay! Roger Miller got away with that in his hit song "Dang Me."
Yup, I'm in there somewhere. I know this is a desolate nightmare scenario for most folks. But I'm only about 5 miles from town, and yet I have.... no noisy neighbors, no barking dogs, no roaring generators, 360° views of the sunrise and sunset, plenty of room to roam, almost always warm, dry, and sunny, and all the peace and quiet I desire.
If I were living in Bizarro World where commercial campgrounds were free, and this place cost money....I would PAY to boondock here.
Ahhh, Larry an excellent question about DAM... "Digital Asset Management." I spotted your problem right off the bat when you said you "got bogged down with photo organization and storage" I have found a lot of people that are organized, methodical, and need "a place for everything and everything in its place" have that same problem. But when dealing with tens of thousands of digital images, the only solution is to come to the realization that there is NO WAY of keeping up with them all and do what I've done which is... simply stop caring.
Now it helps immensely to be like me, disorganized, lazy, unambitious, and a procrastinator, but if you're not blessed with those attributes, here's what you can do to have even a minimal chance of ever finding a picture on your computer again.
I've almost always used Adobe Lightroom to work on my pictures. I've tried almost every other software, but always end up coming back to Lightroom. Lightroom has its built-in DAM, but I've always found it challenging to use it's "Catalogs" mainly because it tries to do too much. This makes it great for the Pros with hundreds of thousands of images to keep up with, but somewhat complicated for me to use until I figured out that I needed to stop using all the things it can do, and do the minimum I need to do to find an old picture every once in a while.
So here's what I've been doing for the last few years that has allowed me to mostly keep up with my pictures without jumping through many hoops to do it. Because if it involves too much work and effort on my part, I will eventually give up and put all of my pictures in one folder called pictures, where I will never be able to find them again.
There's nothing new or unique about what I'm doing; I just tried to keep it as simple as I can. Bearing in mind that I'm not a professional photographer who needs to lay his hands on a particular picture quickly and easily. Even though I'm using Adobe Lightroom to do this, it will work with any other photo processing or DAM software.
The first thing is I have to be ruthless in culling my pictures. I tend to want to keep everything, it hurts to throw them away, but I have forced myself to throw away at least 90% of the pictures I take. Unfortunately, those are usually the good ones, which explains why the images on my blog look the way they do. But if you don't get rid of most of the pictures you take, you will quickly be overwhelmed trying to keep up with them all, in less you have an endless amount of free time, and you truly enjoy curating things.
I start with a folder for the year and label it … pictures 2020. Which I put inside of a folder that Windows comes with named ...pictures.
Since I break my year down into two parts, my summer travels and my winter travels, I put two folders in my pictures 2020 folder labeled, appropriately enough, winter travels and summer travels.
In the winter travels and summer travels folders, I put folders labeled where I'm located when I took the pictures, such as a Denver Colorado folder, a Socorro New Mexico folder, a lost Dutchman state Park folder, a Quartzsite Arizona folder. There are as many folders in those two winter and summer folders as there are places I go. And usually, that's all I do; I'm done.
But, If I go somewhere and do something unusual such as spending two or three days taking 100 pictures of Sandhill Cranes at the Bosque Del Apache, I will often make a special folder, label it Sandhill Cranes, and put it in the Socorro folder. This keeps the Socorro folder neater, and I always try to keep things as simple as possible.
That's it; that's the way all my pictures are cataloged. It helps if you have a simple life like mine.
Early on, I tried using keywords and making folders for every little thing, but trying to decide if this picture should go into that folder or not, I found too time-consuming and complicated. And I would take a picture that had a Sandhill Crane, an old building, and a train in it, and would drive myself crazy adding a bunch of keywords and trying to figure out where to put it. So I don't categorize pictures by their content. Which, by the way, is the opposite of what a lot of professionals do; for me, it's easier to find a picture by the time and location it was taken, than whats in it.
This has worked well for me. Because I designed it specifically to deal with my shortcomings and strengths, few though they may be, I can find a picture reasonably quickly because I can generally remember what year it was taken, and what the picture was of will be a clue as to WHERE it was taken. I've got plenty of time to look for it because I'm not in a hurry. But if you're in a hurry and want to put in the time and effort, most DAMS will allow you to categorize pictures to the nth degree. But years ago, when I tried to do all that, I figured out that if I added up the time it took me to categorize the picture in all the different ways and added that to the time it took me to find the picture, I was no better off than the way I'm doing it now.
I don't know what kind of waterfowl this is, since it doesn't have a duckbill, I think it's a young Coot, but I'm not sure, because I'm mostly around old coots.
Saguaro Cactus, watching over the bleached bones of his deceased brother.