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Workflow Using RAW Images, Affinity Photo, and Apple Photos

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I've been happily using Affinity Photo here and there over the past few months to enhance a few JPEGs that were uploaded from my camera to Apple Photos. Now, I am interesting in getting more serious about photography and am struggling with designing the best workflow.


I have 17,000+ photos in Apple Photos, which my family uses for photo sharing. I also have a new Panasonic Lumix G7 that is shooting in RAW. My current method of transferring photos involves importing the RAW images from my memory card directly into Apple Photos. From there, I can use the Affinity Photo Develop extension to do some of the processing, but the feature set is not complete. I'd rather use the full app rather than the extension to benefit from all the features.


What is the best way to interoperate between Apple Photos and Affinity Photo? Is it to export the original out of Apple Photos and then back in after editing? Or is it better to open photos via the standard Mac OS X Open dialog box where there is a section for Apple Photos? The only issue here is that I am not sure if Affinity Photos saves changes back to Apple Photos, and if so, in which format. Or, do I need a middleman, like Adobe Lightroom or something similar to keep all of my RAW photos and then export the finished projects into Apple Photos as JPEGs?


Any practical advice would be appreciated.

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I have been looking for a replacement for Aperture because I know the inevitable will happen and it will no longer be supported.  I hope that Serif has there DAM out by then.  I tried Light Room but I hated it. 


Take a look at Pixave 2 http://www.littlehj.com its inexpensive and may just work for what you need.  I have it downloaded but have not given it a real work out. 


I did change my importing habits though and use a file system in my pictures folder  that would look like this for mothers day.


Pictures/2016/May/Mothers Day


So it is easy to use any program to find the originals and save jpegs back. 

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I just want to add my own perspective on this topic. Other Affinity members had posted similar issues with relying on Apple's Photos app and then trying to pull images out of there and into Affinity Photo (or other). After years of using RAW images on two different Macs, I currently ensure that my RAW files are downloaded without being edited or converted. For now, this means I'm using Apple's Aperture as my Digital Asset Manager (DAM), even though Apple no longer supports it. I don't use Photos or iPhoto at all. When I choose to edit a photo in Affinity, I browse to the Masters folder inside the Aperture library structure, right click on an image and choose "Open with..." and select Affinity Photo or Designer. That way I can see how the RAW converters compare between Aperture and Affinity. I had also used Canon's Image Browser setup in the past, which allows users to store the images in their pristine state.


Regarding CarlB's suggestion of a folder structure, I do almost the same: within the Mac's Pictures folder, I create subfolders that have intuitive names and dates. This setup allows me to leverage Apple's Aperture as my (mostly) default photo management setup and provides me with a wide array of photo editing choices. Once an image is developed from RAW, I save the jpg (png or tiff) in one of these easy-to-find folders. My older Mac has an old version of Photoshop Elements, my current one has only Affinity and Aperture. This works fine for me. I have never had Adobe Lightroom but I know a LOT of folks use it and love its Digital Asset Management features. That's why some of these folks own both Lightroom and Photoshop (a powerful combo).


But as in photography, these are just some of the many choices that don't have a "right" or "wrong" answer—they're mostly preferences.


Best Regards, and enjoy the journey =)

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