Adding Additional Import Options

In the Import browser, you can add additional import options to refine how images are brought into Aperture. You add controls for additional import settings by choosing an option from the Import Settings pop-up menu. After you modify the import settings, you can remove them from view by deselecting the option in the Import Settings pop-up menu.

Figure. Import Settings pop-up menu in the Import browser.

For more information on additional import options, see the following sections:

Viewing File Information

By default, basic file information about the images you are about to import into Aperture is not shown in the Import browser. However, you can set Aperture to show this information.

To show basic file information about the images displayed in the Import browser
  • In the Import browser, choose File Info from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    Basic metadata about the file selection appears above the Aperture Library controls in the Import browser.

    Figure. File Info in the Import browser.

Note: When a photo with an attachment is selected, the duration of that attachment is displayed. If the selection is a movie or audio file, the duration is shown as well.

Automatically Naming Your Imported Images

The filenames given to images by the camera are often difficult to distinguish. When you import images, you can have Aperture use the original name assigned by the camera or use a filenaming convention that you choose or create. For example, you can use a name format that includes a name that you specify, plus the date, the time, and an index number. Aperture provides a number of preset name formats, and you can also create your own naming conventions to suit the different types of shoots you do. You can choose a preset name format when you import new photos.

You can apply names to your image files when you import them and when you export them. You can specify names to apply to the versions and to the masters. For example, when you import images from your camera, you can specify that a name format be applied to each image version that Aperture creates. You can also specify that Aperture apply names to the masters as they are stored in the library or on a hard disk. When importing image files, you select the Rename Master File checkbox to apply a name format to the masters. Then both versions and masters share the same name format. When you export masters, you can also rename them.

When you import masters as referenced images, you can’t rename the masters if you leave them in their original locations. However, when you import masters as referenced images and move them to a new hard disk location, you can rename them at that time.

Note: If you back up your files on import, the copied files are also renamed. For more information about backing up your files on import, see Automatically Backing Up Your Imported Images.

To automatically name your images during import
  1. In the Import browser, choose Rename Files from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The Rename Files controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Rename Files controls in the Import browser.
  2. Do one of the following:

    • To apply a preset name format to your images as they are imported: Choose a preset name format from the Version Name pop-up menu.
    • To use the existing filenames: Choose None from the Version Name pop-up menu.
    • To create a new name format: Choose Edit from the Version Name pop-up menu.

      For more information about creating new name formats, see Creating Custom Name Formats.

  3. If you choose a name format with a custom name, the Name Text field appears below the Version Name pop-up menu. Enter a name for the images in the Name Text field.

  4. Select the Rename Master File checkbox if you want to change the filenames of the masters on disk to match the version names.

Aperture provides the following preset name formats in the Version Name pop-up menu by default.

Preset name format
Example
Custom Name with Index
Thailand 1, Thailand 2, and so on
Custom Name with Index (no spaces)
Thailand1, Thailand2, and so on
Version Name
IMG001
Version Name and Date/Time
IMG001 - 2008-10-14 09.03.25 PM
Version Name with Sequence
IMG001 (1 of 2), IMG002 (2 of 2), and so on
Version Name with Index
IMG001 1, IMG002 2, and so on
Image Date/Time
2008-10-14 09.03.25 PM
Custom Name with Counter
Thailand 001, Thailand 002, and so on

Applying Valid Filenames

Proper filenaming is one of the most critical aspects of media and project management. When you capture your masters, consider how and where your files may be used in the future. Naming your files simply and consistently makes it easier to share media among multiple photographers, transfer projects to other Aperture systems, move files across a network, and properly restore archived projects. The following sections present several issues to consider when naming project files and image files.

Avoiding Special Characters

The most conservative filenaming conventions provide the most cross-platform compatibility. This means that your filenames will work in different operating systems, such as Mac OS X and other UNIX-based operating systems, Mac OS 9, and Windows. You also need to consider filenaming when you transfer files via the Internet, where you can never be certain what computer platform your files may be stored on, even if temporarily.

Avoid
Example characters
Reasons
File separators
: (colon)
/ (slash)
\ (backslash)
You cannot use colons in the names of files and folders because Mac OS 9 (Classic) uses this character to separate directories in pathnames. In addition, some applications may not allow you to use slashes in the names of items. These characters are directory separators for Mac OS 9, Mac OS X, and DOS (Windows) respectively.
Special characters not included in your native alphabet
¢™
These characters may not be supported or may be difficult to work with when exported to other applications.
Punctuation marks, parentheses, quotation marks, brackets, and operators
. , [ ] { } ( ) ! ; “ ` * ? < > |
These characters are often used in scripting and programming languages.
White space characters such as spaces, tabs, new lines, and carriage returns (the last two are uncommon)
White space is handled differently in different programming languages and operating systems, so certain processing scripts and applications may treat your files differently than expected. The most conservative filenames avoid all use of white space characters and use the underscore (_) character instead.

Creating Custom Name Formats

In addition to the preset name formats, you can create custom name formats. To create a name format, you select the name elements you want in the File Naming dialog. You can compose a name format that combines the following name elements:

  • Version Name

  • Master Filename

  • Sequence Number (1 of 5, 2 of 5, 3 of 5, and so on)

  • Image Year

  • Image Month

  • Image Day

  • Image Date

  • Image Time

  • Index Number (1, 2, 3, and so on)

  • Custom Name

  • Counter (001, 002, 003, and so on)

  • Current Date

  • Current Time

  • Current Year

  • Current Month

  • Current Day

To create a custom name format
  1. In the Import browser, choose Rename Files from the Import Settings pop-up menu, then choose Edit from the Version Name pop-up menu.

    The File Naming dialog appears.

    Figure. File Naming dialog.
  2. Click the Add (+) button to create a new name format, or select the preset name format you want to change.

  3. Drag the name elements you want into the Format field in the order you want them. You can also add valid characters or spaces between the name elements. For more information about valid filenaming characters, see Avoiding Special Characters.

  4. Enter a custom name in the Custom Name field, if you like.

  5. Click OK.

Your new name format now appears in the Version Name pop-up menu.

When using a counter in your name format, you can specify the starting number and the number of digits, from one to six, that appear in the counter. When you use a preset name format with a counter, make sure to reset the initial starting number, if necessary. Otherwise, on the next import, Aperture will continue numbering the imported images starting from the last number of the previous import.

To reset the starting number of a counter in a name format
Do one of the following:
  • In the File Naming dialog, type “0” (zero) in the “Incrementing counter starting at” field.

  • In the File Naming dialog, select the preset whose counter you want to reset to zero, then click the Reset Preset button.

Automatically Backing Up Your Imported Images

Creating copies of your images from the moment you take them is essential to the preservation of your work. In Aperture, you can back up your master image files as they are imported using the Back Up Files import option. Backing up your images at import ensures that if something catastrophic happens to your computer system, copies of your original master images are stored somewhere safe. If you back up your files at import, Aperture makes a copy of each file and places the copied files in the location you specify.

To back up your master image files at import
  1. In the Import browser, choose Backup Location from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The Backup Location controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Backup Location controls in the Import browser.
  2. Do one of the following:

    • To back up your files to the Documents folder: Choose Documents from the Backup To pop-up menu.
    • To back up your files to a new location: Choose “Choose” from the Backup To pop-up menu, then select a location from the dialog that appears.

    Note: It’s a good idea to back up your master files to a location other than your computer. This is the only way to ensure that your original master files are safe if something catastrophic happens to your computer.

You can set Aperture so that it doesn’t back up your files each time you perform an import operation.

To turn off automatic backup on import
  • Choose None from the Backup To pop-up menu.

Adjusting the Image File’s Time When Importing

On a trip, it’s easy to forget to update your camera’s clock to match the local time zone. If you didn’t synchronize your camera time to the new location, Aperture lets you correct the time assigned to the image file by whole hours when importing.

To adjust image file capture time when importing
  1. In the Import browser, choose Time Zone from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The Time Zone controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Time Zone settings in the Import browser.
  2. Choose the time zone that matches the camera’s time setting from the Camera Time pop-up menu.

  3. Choose the time zone of the shoot location from the Actual Time pop-up menu.

Aperture updates the capture time of your image files according to the Time Zone settings.

After you’ve imported images, you can adjust the date and time of any versions you’ve created by choosing Metadata > Adjust Date and Time. For more information about this command, see Adjusting Image Date and Time.

Adding Metadata to Images During Import

You can add metadata to your images as they are imported into Aperture. Adding metadata during the import process helps you keep track of your images and quickly locate them using the Smart Settings HUD and Filter HUD. For example, you can add IPTC keywords and other metadata to the image files.

To add metadata to your images as they’re imported
  1. In the Import browser, choose Metadata Presets from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The Metadata Presets controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Metadata controls in the Import browser.
  2. Do one of the following:

    • To show the metadata fields for a metadata preset: Choose a metadata preset from the Metadata pop-up menu.
    • If you don’t want to modify the metadata of the images during import: Choose None from the Metadata pop-up menu.
    • To create a new metadata preset: Choose Manage Presets from the Metadata pop-up menu.

      For more information about creating new metadata presets, see Working with Metadata Presets.

    When you choose a metadata preset, Aperture displays the metadata fields for that preset. You can enter the metadata you want in the fields.

  3. Do one of the following:

    • To add metadata to the image while maintaining any associated metadata: Click Append.
    • To add metadata and overwrite any associated metadata: Click Replace.

When you choose a metadata preset, Aperture displays the list of metadata fields and metadata for that preset. You can edit the metadata preset to store any metadata that you want to apply frequently to your images using the Metadata inspector. For more information about editing metadata presets, see Working with Metadata.

Applying Image Adjustments to Images During Import

You can apply image adjustments to your images as they are imported. You apply image adjustments by choosing an adjustment preset—a group of adjustment parameters. The adjustment preset is applied uniformly to every imported image until it is changed.

For more information about adjustment presets, see Working with Adjustment Presets.

Important: Adjustment presets are applied to nonmatching files only.

To apply image adjustments to your images as they are imported
  1. In the Import browser, choose Adjustment Presets from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The Adjustment Presets controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Adjustment Presets controls in the Import browser.
  2. Choose an adjustment preset option to apply to the imported images from the Preset pop-up menu.

When you apply an adjustment preset during import, Aperture applies the adjustment preset uniformly to every image it imports until it is turned off. You can edit the adjustment preset that you want to frequently apply to your images by choosing Edit Presets from the Preset pop-up menu. For more information, see Working with Adjustment Presets.

To turn off image adjustments during import
  • In the Adjustment Presets controls, choose None from the Preset pop-up menu.

Filtering Files by Type During Import

Some digital cameras allow you to attach audio attachments to your images. For example, some cameras allow you to record audio annotations for an image after you shoot it. The camera attaches the audio file to the image file so that you can review the audio when you download the image. When you connect a digital camera or card reader or point to a folder with images on your computer, Aperture recognizes any image that has an audio attachment. You can also import standalone QuickTime-compatible audio and video files.

To filter files by type during import
  1. In the Import browser, choose File Type from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The File Type controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Filter Files controls in the Import browser.
  2. Do any of the following:

    • To exclude image files, leaving only audio and video files available for import: Select the “Exclude photos” checkbox.
    • To exclude video files during import: Select the “Exclude videos” checkbox.
    • To exclude audio files during import: Select the “Exclude audio files” checkbox.
    • To exclude all audio files attached to the images: Select the “Exclude audio attachments” checkbox.
    • To include only files that were flagged or locked using the camera: Select the “Only include files flagged/locked in camera” checkbox.

    All images matching the selected criteria appear in the Import browser. To make all the images reappear, deselect the checkboxes above.

About Audio Attachments

An audio file is imported into Aperture as an attachment when the audio file’s name matches the image file’s name. For example, when you import “file.nef” and “file.wav,” Aperture imports the .wav file attached to the .nef raw image file. Audio files are automatically attached during all types of import: from a connected camera or card reader, from internal and external hard disk drives, as well as via drag and drop. If the audio filename is not the same as the image filename, it will not be attached to the image even if imported directly from a camera or a card reader. However, there is one exception: some Canon cameras, including the G9 and G10, prefix the audio filename with “SND” and the image filename with “IMG”; these audio files are imported as attachments.

Importing RAW + JPEG Image Pairs

Many digital cameras have a setting for creating a RAW file plus a JPEG file for each image as you shoot. Many photographers use the RAW + JPEG workflow for the convenience of publishing the JPEG images quickly while saving the RAW files for high-resolution prints. Aperture provides several options for importing the RAW + JPEG image pairs. However, if you decide to import the JPEG image files only, you can always go back and import the corresponding RAW files later.

Note: The RAW + JPEG Pairs import setting remains in effect from import session to import session.

To filter RAW + JPEG pairs during import
  1. In the Import browser, choose RAW + JPEG Pairs from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The RAW + JPEG Pairs controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. RAW + JPEG Pairs controls in the Import browser.
  2. Do one of the following:

    • To import both the RAW and the JPEG image files and set the JPEG file in each pair as the master: Choose “Both (JPEG as Master)” from the Import pop-up menu.
    • To import both the RAW and the JPEG image files and set the RAW file in each pair as the master: Choose “Both (RAW as Master)” from the Import pop-up menu.
    • To import the RAW and JPEG image files as separate masters: Choose “Both (Separate Masters).”
    • To import the JPEG files only: Choose “JPEG files only” from the Import pop-up menu.
    • To import the RAW files only: Choose “RAW files only” from the Import pop-up menu.

If you import only the JPEG files and then later decide you want to download the RAW files as well, you can have Aperture identify and import the RAW files that match the JPEG files in your Aperture library.

To import the RAW files that match the JPEG files in your Aperture library
  1. Choose “Matching RAW files” from the Import pop-up menu.

    The Include pop-up menu appears below the Import pop-up menu.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • To import all matching RAW files regardless of rating: Choose “All matching files” from the Include pop-up menu.
    • To import all RAW files matching JPEG files that are unrated or better: Choose “Unrated or better” from the Include pop-up menu.
    • To import all RAW files that match the current rating: Choose “Current filter” from the Include pop-up menu.

Using AppleScript Actions Immediately After Import

The Aperture community provides many AppleScript actions online to automate tasks in Aperture you tend to repeat on a regular basis. If you’re technologically savvy, you can create your own AppleScript actions to help automate your workflow. You can use AppleScript actions from within Aperture immediately after an import operation is complete.

For more information about AppleScript actions for use with Aperture, see http://www.apple.com/aperture/resources.

Important: All scripts must use the import event handler: on importActionForVersions(input).

To use AppleScript actions immediately after import
  1. Choose Actions from the Import Settings pop-up menu.

    The Actions controls appear in the Import browser.

    Figure. Actions controls in the Import browser.
  2. If no AppleScript action is selected, click the Choose button and locate a script from the dialog that appears.

The selected AppleScript action appears in the AppleScript field and is set to begin as soon as the import operation is complete.

Note: The AppleScript action is only applied to the current import operation.

To stop AppleScript actions from automatically starting after import
  • Click the Clear button.

Resetting Your Import Settings

The import settings you set in the Import browser remain in effect from import session to import session, regardless of whether or not they are shown. However, you can quickly reset the import settings to their defaults.

To reset the import settings to their defaults
  • In the Import browser, choose Reset to Defaults from the Import Settings pop-up menu.