For our existing customers there are a couple features we are retiring that you should know about.
We are taking our Lightroom integrated approach that has been very popular with our Mosaic View product and expanding it to include online RAW photo backup.
Our photo viewing app has also gotten a complete redesign. The new version of the App is faster, more stable, and also works on smartphones including the iPhone. You will also be able to see which photos are backed up from the Mosaic App.
Backing up using Lightroom data has a lot of advantages including the ability to better manage your cloud backups.
Photographers take a lot of photos (and videos) that generate a lot of data. As any photographer knows, not every photo is amazing…. or even good. One of the things we love about Lightroom is the ability to keep track of your “good photos”.
Many customers said to us that they didn’t want to pay to have their 50 bracketed photos backed up when really they only cared about the 1 complete HDR image. Why not automated this process?
Backing up images within Lightroom allows the flexibility to backup automatically by Lightroom metadata. You will be able to backup using stars, flags, dates, and/or collections automatically and easily. Or just automatically backup everything in Lightroom. This keeps your costs down while giving you all of the benefits of an automated backup solution.
This does however mean we will no longer backup any documents that are not in Lightroom.
If you are a current customer who uses Aperture, you are most likely asking, what about us? We are sorry to say we will not be supporting Aperture moving forward.
Another major change with this release is that we are moving our data infrastructure from our own servers and data center to Amazon. When we first launched Mosaic there was no scalable, offsite, redundant and cost effective cloud storage solution for photographers. So we built it. This changed when Amazon launched their Glacier service.
This is a win-win. Amazon are experts at keeping data safe. They have a stellar track record in large data management. This also frees up development resources on our end to work on the customer facing stuff as opposed to server side stuff. This should allow us to pump out more releases and features more quickly going forward. (We are also hiring!)
One temporary result of this change is that we will not be accepting new hard drive shipments. We will reactivate the service in the future.
All Mosaic Archive customers will have complete access to anything in Lightroom from our App included in their subscription fee.
We know these changes are going to delight many customers. But for others, Mosaic may no longer be a good fit for your online backup needs. Customers can cancel their accounts at any time using the “My Account” link at the bottom of our webpage. We sincerely hope that we can keep your business.
At some point in the near future, we will be shutting down our data center and discontinuing support for our current product. Lots of notices will be given before this happens.
We are very excited about this release. If you are interested in trying this service in beta, please email us. We will add you to the list!
We have lots of ideas about how to improve our product and give you more options in your Lightroom workflow. This is just the beginning!
Please never hesitate to reach out to us directly if you would like to share your thoughts or ideas.
Thank you again for your support.
Gerard and Andy
Co-Founders of Mosaic
The first of these is to purchase an external hard drive. These are fairly inexpensive, as you can purchase a one-terabyte drive for around $100. The advantage of these is that being connected directly to your computer, it is a breeze to back up your digital photos to such a drive after editing. There’s also plenty of space for all of your images. However, because the drive is attached to your computer, it can also be subject to viruses (although unlikely) and mechanical failure. Also, being on the same site as your computer means that should your house suffer a fire or break-in, the external drive containing your digital photos can also be lost. This technique can be a great first line of defense in preserving your digital photos, however, it should not be relied upon exclusively.
Many photographers choose to have redundant arrays of external drives. These drives are typically bundled together in a RAID 5 or RAID 6 type of mirroring. If you are technical you can deploy a redundant RAID system yourself or you can purchase a hardware system like a Drobo that comes prepackaged with this level of redundancy.(more…)
Since I co-founded Mosaic, there have been many personal moments. I have put my life savings into the company, I have put stress on my beautiful and supportive wife, and spent countless nights and weekends away from my kids. This is normal for any entrepreneur and honestly we have probably had it easier than most.
There have also been wonderful and incredibly rewarding moments. Like when we released our app, crossed major milestones, and have returned anxious customers photos after a disaster.
But none of those moments were as personal as sharing my photos on my iPad with my dying Grandfather.
My Grandfather was very special to me. In addition to being the world’s best story teller, he was the original family entrepreneur. He started his own business after not being paid by his uncle for a 2 week vacation. After working for 50 years in his own business, he went to law school in his 70s (for fun) and day traded stocks into his 90s. He was a great man, even measured against those in the Greatest Generation. At my home office, I sit in his chair.
He died peacefully in his sleep at 96 years old. We knew he was going. His incredibly sharp mind was filling with the cobwebs of advanced Alzheimer’s. I made one last trip to say good-bye.
I didn’t plan this moment. It just happened. I had an hour with Grandpa. I had my iPad. I opened the Mosaic View App which was synchronized with my entire photo library. And we looked at old pictures we had scanned of him.
I told the stories, he always told me. When I told them, he would laugh at the right moments and even corrected me once. The photos brought him temporarily back as only photos can. I left knowing that it would be my final moment with him.
Pictures helped me say my good-byes. They helped bring a smile to my grandfathers face.
We created Mosaic so people could have those experiences by sharing memories. These unplanned moments where pictures are worth even more than a thousand words because no words will do.
Founding a startup is really hard. In this moment, my product helped me in a way that has shaped my last memory of my Grandfather. I write this sitting in my Grandfathers chair and hope that what we are doing would continue to make him proud and bring a smile to his face.
This is all about workflow; you know… how you get your photos from your camera to that beautiful, amazing killer 30×40 framed jaw-dropping masterpiece hanging over your living room sofa. I know you want to, don’t deny it. So lets see what it takes and in the process I’ll share with you some of my secrets for making it pretty darn easy.
But first… we have to get serious and think about organization even before we start. Bummer. I know. But lets get it out of the way so we can move on to the creative stuff we all love to do.
Lightroom is both a file management system and a photo editor. The only problem is that you can’t really use it as an editor until you understand how it manages files. If you are like me, you probably loaded Lightroom on your computer and started playing around. How’d that work for you? Not so good, right?
Best we take a moment and think a little about making sure that whatever system we set up can last us into the next decade. So lets start with file management.
Basic photo organizing for most people means storing photos by date. An alternative is to store photos by “place” or “event.” Either one is fine. If you’ve been consistent, you have a great place to start. Even if you haven’t there’s still hope for you too.
Recently I worked with a professional portrait photographer who organized by client name. That works fine so let’s start with your hard drive and group images together by any means you want but you will need this as a start. Go ahead and do that before you go any further since it may be the most important part of getting Lightroom to work for you. Back so quick? Good. Lets launch Lightroom and start setting it up before we go any further.(more…)
Is there a question mark in your Lightroom catalog with a big warning saying, “The file named “X” is offline or missing.”? Don’t panic. Most of the time this is easy to fix.
A couple things could be going on.
Let’s start with the easy one. If you keep your images on an external drive and you unplug the drive, basically Lightroom is telling you that they can’t find the images… at the moment… If you plug in the drive, the question mark will magically go away. While the file is offline, you can still make catalog types of changes like keywords, stars, colors and flags. If you go to the Develop module, the controls will be grayed out.(more…)
Today marks the halfway point of our trip and what better place to send an update from than a Starbucks in Hawaii. We’ve got a few hours to kill before our plane takes off back for Seattle where we will continue on our second leg through the rest of the continental U.S.. I know that it seems crazy to be sitting here writing an update when we have beautiful Hawaii at our fingertips, but sitting down and writing an email is a luxury we typically don’t have the time for, so the sandy beaches can wait.
Just in the past 24 hours, we’ve explored an active volcano, walked through underground lava tubes, played with a zebra, camped next to a playground to escape the noise of a Hawaiian rave still going at 3 in the morning, and cliff jumped off of the most southern point in the U.S.. While I’ll admit that it’s not a typical day, it’s not very far off. We’ve also canoed through underground rivers in Connecticut, barely missed getting run over by a train in Vermont, got to watch a Cleveland Indians baseball game from a private suite in Ohio, shot 8 different types of guns in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and ran for our lives in fear of getting chased down by a buffalo in Wyoming. Somehow in there, we’ve managed to find the time to send out around 450 postcards per state too.
The workflow of the day usually goes like this: wake up, pack in all of our gear (in most cases we’re camping in various state and national parks), eat breakfast and plan out a loose route for the day, type “coffee” into Google Maps and drive at unreasonable speeds in that direction (this is when the realization that we’re on a 3 month, 50 state road trip sets in), zig zag trails across the current state we are in, searching for the next postcard photo (usually shooting anywhere between 400-1,000 photos per state), get to our final destination point for the day, set up, edit, print, label (this whole process takes about 3 hours or so), climb into our respective tents, sleep, and the circle of life continues.(more…)
Mosaic View will provide web access to your Lightroom Catalog. Your last 2,000 images will be instantly available for free using the Mosaic View web app. In addition to online backup, Mosaic paid customers will have access to their entire Lightroom catalog plus new upcoming features. (Read more here.)
As photographers, it frustrated us that we didn’t have anywhere access to our Lightroom images. We tried exporting and publish services but were not satisfied. We just wanted our images on our iPad the moment we put them into Lightroom without any muss or fuss. We have come to expect this with great tools like Google Docs and Dropbox.
Lightroom is like iTunes with no iPod – a great catalog tool that is stuck on one machine.
We are recreating the Lightroom Library view in a web application. So you can find your photos as easily as you do in Lightroom. You can view your folders, collections, and smart collections. Use these to show off your photos from your iPad or second computer to your clients, friends, co-workers, or spouse.
We have designed this web application to look great on tablet devices like the iPad.(more…)
This post seemed to grab a lot of people. The photos were pretty darn good. But personally, I think it was something greater that made fellow photographers remember this post.
As serious photographers, we cherish our photos the minute we make them. We have backup systems, add metadata, catalog the images using Lightroom or Aperture, and use online photo storage services so that we can find, use and protect our images.
We do this for immediate benefit (find them now to share on Facebook) and for long term benefits (so I can find my photos 1 month, 1 year or 100 years from now). This is what Digital Asset Management is all about.
A woman ahead of her time, my great-grandmother decided to travel the world. As a widowed school teacher, she wasn’t one to sit still. She didn’t just go to Yellowstone and Yosemite, she visited Thailand, Tibet, China, Iran, Greece, Napal, Cambodia, and Japan.
The photos were passed down to my mother. My mother used a great service called Go Photo for slide scanning. Our family has also used GoPhoto for video to dvd conversion. These images have now been shared on Facebook for the entire family to enjoy.(more…)
At Mosaic, we spend hours a day speaking with photographers. We often hear that photographers wished they spent less time in post-production. As modern photographers we just take a lot of photos. While our goal is to take fewer but make more impactful photos, we still need to spend a lot of time finding the best photos to selectively show our clients or to show our friends. We are the curator of our own photos.
Digital Asset Management – DAM – refers to your whole workflow from before the shot to the archival of your photo. One of the important aspects of this process is to catalog images. This is a give and take. You have to invest some time upfront so that your editing and searching process later is easier in the long run.
I never metadata I didn’t like…Corny jokes aside, adding metadata like keywords, flags, ratings and stars can add value to your photos while saving you time. What we typically hear is that people don’t use metadata, because it takes too much time. Using this method, you can spend less time and get more value from your cataloging workflow.
You only want to spend time developing and editing your best photos. You don’t want to edit every photo. But there are also photos we don’t want to delete.
As I import photos into Lightroom, I add keywords to the whole shoot. Maybe this is the destination (Spain), client names, location (studio, park, church,), style (portraits, boudoir, etc.) or holiday (Christmas). This takes almost no time and makes it easy to find photos later.
After I import my photos into Lightroom, I take a quick glance through the import in the library mode. I then rate every photo. That is right… every photo. I know this sounds like a lot of work, but Lightroom makes it easy to go through many photos quickly. I also selectively delete my photos. I don’t delete very much, but if the photo is just not very good or out of focus or a rapid fire shot where I have 7 similar photos, I will delete.(more…)