Just for what it might be worth, here's my ordinary work method.
When I decide to start a major project, I give it a name, and use that
name for a directory / folder. Then I create a text file, "Log.txt"
using my favorite text editor. I next create a subdirectory "Start" into
which I copy any material from external sources; if I would have to
spend much time searching for some item I used, it would get stored in
this folder. Information I might want to keep track of about files in
the "start" folder, for example, the name of the source, and the path at
the time I found the image, would be listed in the log.txt file.
When I start work, I keep progress notes in the log file, for example
> Started with my image; adjusted color balance to ...
> Added image2.png as a layer to the image, and converted it to use as
> a mask.
At major break points, for example, if I decide to retrieve something
from the kitchen, or if someone comes to the door, if it's been a while
since I saved my work, or most importantly, if I reach a point where I'm
not sure what to do next, I save the working image as 00n.xcf, where n
is the next sequential number. At the same time, I save the log file as
00n.txt. I close the file (and often close GIMP), reopen the files
(00n.xcf and 00n.txt), and immediately save the files wioth an
incremented name so that subsequent work does not overwrite the previous
This sounds like a lot of work, but I think it has actually saved me a
lot of time, in the number of times I decided a ways down one path, that
I should have done it the other way. It's a whole lot easier in this
case to save version 010, and reload version 006, and explore the
results of taking the other path. And the reason for saving version 010,
is that sometimes I only think I would have liked the other path.
Finally, I regularly save the main folder in multiple places on
different mediums. For example, on two different physical hard drives,
or on a physical hard drive and thumb drive. I can't think of a
significant file of which I don't have at least two copies.
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