Photo Mechanic 6 is one of my favorite and most underrated tools in my photography business. Here are 5 tips for using Photo Mechanic 6 and what I do to save myself time in the culling process.
Open Images Shortcut
As you can imagine, after a shoot you may have hundred or even thousands of images to sift through. One of the best things I think one of the best things you can do is open up your images by hitting the ‘space’ bar. This way, you can see your images in a much more zoomed in and in a bigger format. This will allow you to quickly see whether or not things are in focus or how you want them to look.
Another beautiful thing about Photo Mechanic is the load time. Unlike Lightroom which has a much slower load time, Photo Mechanic allows you to quickly glance at many raw files in a timely manner.
Positive Culling System
Another thing I like to do in Photo Mechanic 6 is what I call a Positive Culling System, which means if I like an image, I am going to hit the ‘T’ key on the keyboard. This will put a checkmark on that image so I know that that image is a selection.
Rating & Sorting
Another thing you can do in Photo Mechanic 6 is give your image a color rating. For instance, images that you definitely want to bring into an album, you can color code so that you can easily keep track of these images. You can also give images a star rating. So, lets say you give 10 images a 1-start rating. You can then choose to view all of the images that you gave that particular rating to.
Change Meta Data
You can also very easily change meta data by hitting the ‘I’ key on your keyboard. When you hit the ‘I’ key, you will see all of this meta information that you can change or leave inside the photograph.
And, any changes that you make to the meta data of one photo, you can also apply to all of your photos. You can go ahead and change the keywords, the date the photo was taken, anything that exists in the meta data of your photos.
Check Your Focus
Another great shortcut in Photo Mechanic is the check your focus shortcut. You can quickly check the focus of an image by hitting the ‘Z’ key. This is a great tool to check that the focus of an image is how I want it before I pull it in to edit it in Lightroom.
Adding watermarks in Photo mechanic is also super easy! You can not only add watermarks upon exporting, but you can also customize watermarks as well.
To add watermarks in Photo Mechanic, you simply go to ‘Save As’ and check off the watermark option. You can adjust how big you want your watermarks to be, where you want them to appear on the images, etc.
Keep Catalogues Lean
One final tip I have for you is to keep your Lightroom catalogues as lean as you can. Your catalogues will run faster if you first decide what images you want to edit in post production before mass importing and then sorting through in Lightroom.
That is why Photo Mechanic 6 is a great software to use to rate, sort, and check your images before you export into Lightroom.
I hope that these tips for navigating Photo Mechanic 6 have helped you have a better grasp on your culling process!