Importing Images into a Session

Find out how to import images from your card reader, connected camera, flash disk or portable external drive.

Importing images from external media

Capture One’s importer dialog allows you to import all the images from a memory card, connected camera, flash disk or portable external drive, or you can import selected images instead. Although you can choose to store source images on a dedicated external drive, when working in a Session, it is best to store them on your local disk first, then move them off when you’ve finished with all of the adjustments and edits.

  1. Open the importer by choosing one of the following options:
    • From the main menu choose File > Import Images...
    • Click on the Import icon in the Toolbar.
    • Drag a volume or folder of images into the Capture One image browser.
    • Connect your card reader to your computer.
  2. The Import Images dialog (i.e., the importer) opens. When a card reader has been connected or when a folder has been dragged into the Capture One image browser, the contents of that folder are displayed as thumbnails in the importer’s browser.
  3. If the importer’s browser isn’t displaying your images, go to the Import From tool, click on the Source fly-out menu, select Choose Folder... and navigate to the relevant folder you want to import. Make sure that the Include Subfolders check box is selected in the Import From tool. This option is useful for locating all the images on a memory card.            
  4. When you want to select specific images to import, adopt the usual shift-click to select contiguous images, or Cmd+click (Mac), Ctrl+click (Windows) to select individual images. When you want to reset the image selection, click on the background between thumbnails.
  5. From the Destination fly-out, select the Capture Folder. This option is the standard folder to import files to when using Sessions. It maintains the standard Sessions structure of Capture, Selects, Output and Trash subfolders.
  6. In the optional Sub Folder field, add a subfolder or a series of hierarchical subfolders. Select this only if you want to organize the imported images into subfolders within the parent Capture Folder. (See below for more information.)        
  7. From the Sample Path field, verify the path is pointing to the chosen folder for import.        
  8. In the Space Left field, verify the capacity left on the volume or drive is enough to store the new images.
  9. Select options for backing-up, naming images, copyright and adjustments as desired. (For more detailed information, see below.)
  10. Press Import All or Import X Images for selected images, if no further options are required. (Note you can always add adjustments later, of course, and easily add copyright info and rename files.)

Capture One’s importer tool for sessions is practically identical to the importer used for catalogs.

Creating an additional folder structure on import

When you created a new Session you will have already generated a Session folder with a series of subfolders - Capture, Selects, Output and Trash. However, the importer offers the option to create additional subfolders, as simple or as complex as your needs dictate.

In addition, you can combine this with Capture One’s dynamic locations feature. By leveraging Capture One’s database access to the image metadata, the importer’s Location Sub Folder Tokens enable it to automatically create, organize and name folders of images when downloading.

By adopting just one token, for example the Orientation token, you can use the feature to organize images into portrait and landscape subfolders of the parent Capture folder. However, you can use the two features together to create and organize images into just about any folder structure. You can also save these folders as user presets and switch between them, as and when you need.

The Location Sub Folder Tokens are also available in the Export dialog, so you can semi-automate the naming and organizing of folders when it is time to share a selection of images.

To aid session navigation, when importing into a session and the Sub Folder field contains only text or the Import Date token, Capture One will automatically create a Session Favorite in the Library. If any other tokens are used that may result in files being stored in separate subfolders, an Album will be created.

  1. Open the importer and, from the Source fly-out menu, select the images to import.
  2. In the Import To tool, click on the Destination fly-out menu and select from one of the following options:
    • Capture Folder - this option is the standard folder to import files to when using Sessions. Select this when you want to further segregate images in this folder.
    • Session Folder - this is the highest folder in the session hierarchy. Choose this option when you want to customize the standard session structure (i.e., using the Sub Folder option below will add another parent folder initially, however hierarchical subfolders can also be created).
    • Selected Folder - a previously created folder, selected in the Library tool. Choose this option, for example, when importing images into a previously customized session.
    • Choose Folder... - use this option to navigate to a new folder, such as an existing folder hierarchy in an image library, or a folder on an external drive, and click Set as Import Folder. Note, recently used folders appear as shortcuts.
  3. To verify the folder location, click on the adjacent arrow. A warning icon may be displayed instead if a valid folder has not already been selected in the Library.
  4. To create a single subfolder within the folder selected above, add a descriptive name in the Sub Folder text field, then move to step 8.
  5. To create and organize images in multiple subfolders based on metadata, click on the () icon next to the Sub Folder text field to open the Location Sub Folder Tokens dialog and select the appropriate tokens available in the list. 
  6. Text and tokens may be used together in the Sub Folder text field or the dialog’s Format text box and saved as a user preset. (Click on Save User Preset…. Add a name and select Save.)
  7. When creating hierarchical subfolders, add a forward/backward slash (Mac/Windows) without spaces in between each new folder name or token used. Each forward/backward slash adds a subfolder to the preceding text entry or token.
  8. When using the Location Sub Folder Tokens dialog, click OK in to accept the naming/folder structure format.
  9. In the Sample Path field, verify the path is pointing to the chosen folder for import.
  10. Continue with options for backing-up, file-naming, copyright and adjustments, as desired.

The importer offers the option to create a series of subfolders, as simple or as complex as your needs dictate.

Backing up images on import

A simultaneous copy of the imported images can be made from the Backup To tool in the importer. For example, importing images from a memory card can be downloaded (i.e. copied) to the Pictures/My Pictures (Mac/Windows) folder on your laptop, and simultaneously backed up (i.e., copied again) to a connected portable external drive.

Warning! While this is a useful option for a temporary backup, it should not replace your principal backup strategy.

  1. In the Backup To dialog, select the Backup Enabled option.
  2. From the Location fly-out menu, choose Select folder… and navigate to your chosen location, such as an external drive, ideally, and select either an existing folder or create and name a new folder from the dialog.
  3. Images will be duplicated to the selected backup folder on import.

A second copy of the imported images can be chosen from the Backup To tool in the importer.

Naming images on import

When importing you can use the importer to rename the images. If left to the default setting, with the Image Name token in the format field, the original file names will be maintained. 

  1. Add, or verify previous image naming and identification data in the Naming dialog. To maintain the original file names of the source images, only the Image Name token should be used in the Format field.
  2. In the Naming tool click the button next to the Format text box to reveal the Naming dialog box.
  3. Select the desired naming choice in the Presets fly-out menu. Alternatively, create a new naming format by dragging tokens and/or adding custom text to the Format text box. Any new format can be saved as a user preset.
  4. Click the downward arrow on Tokens to access and select more options.
  5. After choosing the desired token, drag and drop the token into the format line. When the Job Name token is selected the Job Name field becomes active. Use this option when customizing the naming of a small number of images at a time.
  6. Click OK to accept the changes.
  7. In the Sample field, verify that name is in the desired format.

When importing from external media you can use this tool to rename the images.

Adding copyright and a description on import

Use the Metadata tool to fill in copyright information and a description or caption, if desired. The tool remembers data, so adding copyright information doesn’t have to be re-entered for each import. You can leave both fields blank if you’re unsure how the images will be used as both can be added after import.

Use the Metadata tool to fill in copyright information and a description or caption if desired.

Adding adjustments on import

You can add image adjustments when importing. Although it is limited to the automatic adjustments found in the main toolbar, you can also apply Styles and Presets which can be extensively customized for your particular workflow. For example, you can use this feature to apply keywords or IPTC metadata, such as copyright and rights usage terms, if they’ve been saved previously as a User Style or Preset.

When importing images that have been worked on previously in Capture One, the Include Existing Adjustments option should be selected so that any previously made adjustments and settings can be applied. It can be left permanently selected, just in case.

  1. In the Adjustments tool, check mark the Auto Adjust option to apply on import the automatic adjustments selected from the Toolbar. (Note this option may slow down the import process.)
  2. Presets and/or styles can also be applied to images during import. Select the relevant options from the Styles fly-out menu.
  3. Select the Include Existing Adjustments check box if you are importing files that have already been worked on in Capture One. This option imports and applies all adjustments and settings (i.e., ratings, keywords, copyright info., and any other metadata) associated with each image file.
  4. Selected adjustments will be applied on import.

You can add image adjustments when importing from external media