Scott Davenport Photography
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My Lightroom Migration Update

Each week I learn something new about Lightroom, and about the preparations I can make in Aperture to ensure my migration is as smooth as possible. I've already determined I need to do a manual migration. The automated tools aren't to my liking. Adobe's Aperture Importer works - all your photos make it to Lightroom, although I don't prefer the on-disk folder hierarchy it creates. Metadata is piecemeal, too. That's due to a variety of reasons, such as Aperture not writing IPTC to non-RAW formats and Lightroom ignoring XMP sidecar information for non-RAW formats.

So I'm doing it "the hard way". But in the end, I'll have maintained as much of my organization as possible when switching tools. I'm refining several AppleScripts to fill the metadata gaps I've found so far. I wish Lightroom had AppleScript bindings so I could automate things on the receiving end of my migration. That's not to be. So it goes.

For anyone that tells you a migration is simple, it's not. Getting your photos out of Aperture and into Lightroom is simple. Bringing in new photos and creating new collections is simple. Transferring and maintaining an organizational system across disparate tools – whatever they are – is not. That's the pain point.

I am keeping very detailed notes on what I'm doing. I'm at 40 pages and counting. I'd say 60-70% of what I've written is preparations within Aperture to maximize metadata retention on export. In theory, that applies to whatever DAM you are moving to, Lightroom, Capture One, Perfect Browse, and so on.

I'll make it available when I finish my migration and it's battle tested. One more perspective on migrating from Aperture.I don't think any single guide can match everyone's needs (mine included). The more perspectives you have, the better.