Revisiting old photos

I’m sure I’ve mentioned this here before in general numbers, but today I did a detailed count of photos that I have revisited since I first bought PhotoLab 3 in late 2019.

The number today stands at 1,418. These are mostly photos that had previously been processed in one of Lightroom, Aperture, or Luminar, but also a significant number of photos that were passed over in those applications yet made the cut with PhotoLab. There are also some in that number that were revisited with Prime and then again with DeepPRIME.

These photos span from 2008 to 2019 and without exception stand up to my current standards for publishing. (Though a small number of previously published shots did not and were subsequently ‘unpublished’.)

Some people may do this as a matter of course, but for those like me who make a judgement shortly after taking the shots and then move on, I encourage you to go back and revisit your old memories and see what you can make of them today.

This, by the way, is why I delete nothing.

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I do that too and throw images away that I’ve originally kept for emotional rather than other reasons…

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Revisiting old photos – well, there must be a good reason for.

  • taste / interest
    While I preserve precious memories (all kind of), I’m not so much interested to revive old stuff.

  • quality
    This can happen with pics, that made it to prints (my ‘holy grail’ :slight_smile: ). And then I invest a lot of time. – BUT, editing capability with extended masking, softproofing and printing is not the strength of PhotoLab (using it for developing since 2019).

I also enjoy going back a re-editing some old favorite photographs. I unfortunately shot jpeg when i first transitioned from film to digital camera (when nikon d70 was introduced), but transitioned to only shooting RAW within a year or so. I consider the RAW file as a “negative” that i can keep going back to. As software like DXO continues to become more powerful, and my ability to use the software slowly improves, I find i can do more with older images.

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Definitely there’s not a lot to be gained by revisiting JPEGs. That way disappointment lies when one is used to editing RAW.

The thing that I didn’t mention is some of my most favourite of all photos have only become so because I went back later. When I go back to a group of photos (usually a trip, or an air show, or both) I pick out those I originally published and pretty them up, but then I go through the ones that didn’t make the original selection and find some that I cannot believe past me could skip over.

Right now I have a wallpaper on my laptop screen (which being a MacBook Pro makes it look all the more stunning) which was one of the first photos I took on my trip to Singapore in 2019. I only “discovered” its beauty on a recent revisit to my complete set of photos taken on the trip. It’s now one of my favourites.

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I agree completely with all the points raised- I have also found during this pandemic the joy of discovering “new” older photos, the fun of reworking/improving previous favorite images, and the frustration with the limited ability to work with original jpegs compared to raw images.

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Recently I been looking at so old “rejected” images and been thinking “wow, that was not so bad!”.
I think the reason for that is that when you first go through your pictures, if they don’t look like what you planned or had in mind, the tendency of to mumble something rude, and reject them.
But the reality is that you put a lot of thought and process into the image. You planned the composition, got everything where you want it, got focus and the important bits, etc. The fact that the subject you were fascinated with that the time, moved, blurred, changed colour, etc. makes you dismiss an otherwise good shot.
So I will be revisiting old shots more often.
I remember in a tutorial (can’t remember who it was by now) that the presenter said she always waited a couple days before going through her shots - maybe there is something in that too.

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I’m often impatient enough (or anxious to save them as soon as possible to the backup drive) to quickly go through the photos and delete the obvious “mishaps”, and then revisit them, after a week or so. Also, when going again to places I’ve already been months or years ago, I’m also opening the “old session” just to see what changed in between, the landscape, my approach to it, points of view, whatever. Often I think “would have been cool doing that before revisiting”. But I also like the surprise :slightly_smiling_face:

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