Posts Tagged ‘photo management’
In my past couple of posts I spoke a lot about how to manage, declutter, and organize your digital photos. I have concentrated on digital, because in the current age, most people no longer use film cameras. The ease and simplicity of digital just makes them more convenient (and often less wasteful) for most people.
But what to do about all those printed photos that you have lying around? Fear not! I’m here to give you some advice.
1. Archive them!
The best piece of advice I can give to you is to scan all those images in and archive them digitally. This makes it easier to find them and share them. (see Photo Management, and Photo Management Part 2). This is a great way to preserve your memories as well, in case of a disaster such as flood, tornado, fire, or theft. Scan them in and then upload them to a server. This could be a photo management server as talked about in my original Photo Management post, or a secured backup server that holds ALL your computers information in case of hacking or crashes.
2. Display them Beautifully
It doesn’t do you or your photos any good to have them jam packed into shoe boxes under the bed or in the closet. Invest in picture frames so that you can display your memories. There are some great ideas for arranging pictures on walls and mantles for all to see, just surf the internet to find them!
3. Memory Books
When my older brother got married I went through all the pictures of us all growing up. I then asked his wife’s mom to send me pictures of her growing up. I combined pictures of them at different ages, during special events, etc. into one book. I then included engagement photos. It was a joining of two lives. They loved it.
Memory books are often a truly touching, creative, and well received gift. If you are into scrapbooking create pictures that way. Ask family for old pictures, turn them into an album and return for a birthday or holiday. Include stories or comments about what is going on in the picture. Kids especially love looking at old pictures of their parents. It is a good way to bring families together to share stories from their pasts.
One of the best days I spent with my grandmother was going through old pictures. I heard all sorts of stories from her that I never heard before – silly things she remembered doing with her best friend, dates with my grandfather, her time in the WAVES during World War II. These are stories that I want to pass down to my children when I have them, and I never would have heard them if I hadn’t sat down and gone through pictures with her.
4. Photo Boxes
If you have scores of pictures that you need to organize (so you can do one of the above, hopefully) I would recommend photo boxes. You can buy boxes marketed this way, but I would really recommend storing your pictures in plastic bins. In my experience most people end up putting boxes of pictures in their basements, which often exposes them to dampness. Dampness WILL ruin your pictures. By using rubbermaid type boxes it will help to protect your photos from water damage. Invest in some index cards or page dividers so you can make categories for your pictures. This will assist in maintaining organization, and will help you when you’re looking for a specific picture or event.
I hope Some of these ideas help you organize your photos more efficiently. Remember, don’t keep ruined photos. If there’s a thumb in it, it’s blurry, water damaged, too dark, or you can’t see the image clearly for any other image – get rid of it!
Last week I talked about ways to start reducing your photo clutter. This week I’ll be talking a little more about how to actually organize and keep track of your pictures. For those of you with digital photos:
1. Keep them all in the same place!
For this I mean several things. Keep them all on the same hard drive (ie: same computer). One of the best and safest ways to do this is to keep them all stored on an external hard drive that can then be kept in a fire proof safe. This is a great way to protect your pictures. Now like I said, keeping your photos in the same place means several things. This includes keeping them in the same photo management system (such as iphoto, photoshop, Photo Director, etc). This way when you open your software all your pictures are available and you don’t have to go searching through different places. This also includes picking one online storage option and sticking to it. In my last post I listed several online photo management sites that are available, all with different options. In my opinion you should pick one and stick to it. Don’t load photos to picasa, and snapfish, and shutterfly, because then when you go to look for a specific picture you won’t know which site to find it at!
2. RENAME YOUR PICTURES!
This is something I am awful at doing. I load my pictures, and then often forget about them (I know, I know, BAD!) Then, when I’m trying to find a specific picture I have to scroll through everything in the folder (or worse, open every file) in order to find the ONE I’m looking for! If you rename the pictures with descriptive titles, you can more easily find the specific one you’re looking for.
3. Keep like photos together in folders
Use folders. By making descriptive folders you can keep like photos together. And the great thing about digital pictures is you can put them in multiple folders if you wish. So have a folder for that vacation to Disney World you took 5 years ago, but also make a folder for each of your children, and put photos that match both category in both folders.
4. Be Patient
If you’ve got lots of pictures in disarray don’t be alarmed: this could take some time! Take a deep breath, take things one at a time, and be patient. Celebrate small accomplishments. You got through a whole folder? Hooray! 10 pictures renamed and placed in appropriate folders? WooHoo! Be proud of getting some done today, and do more tomorrow! Now, if you’ve got piles of hard copy photos, I’ll have some more tips for you next week!
I love taking pictures. I’m still not very good at remembering to take pictures of PEOPLE, but when on vacations I love taking pictures of the scenery and the places we go. The problem comes when I get home. And maybe, a few weeks or months later, I finally load the pictures from my camera onto my computer. And maybe a few weeks after that I attempt to put them into categories… And by then I’ve forgotten names, dates, and places! Sound familiar? I’ll be doing a short series on organizing your photos. My first post here is about how to keep your photos under control. Later on I’ll be talking more about how to organize the photos you do keep.
1. Limit photo taking
This can be a tough one. You take a picture that doesn’t come out the first time, so you take another. You want a progression of the sunset, so you take 20 pictures. You love the ocean and want a picture of the perfect wave, so you take 5 pictures. You have a new baby and they just keep doing the sweetest things, like sleep… or smile… or whatever. Been there done that (except the baby part). Try to hold back. Instead of 20 pictures, limit yourself to the 5 best and get rid of the rest. Don’t take a picture EVERY time your baby falls asleep.
2. Delete bad photos right away
Red eyes and blinks are a thing of the past. With the advent of digital cameras you don’t need to keep those poor shots – just retake the picture, but make sure you DELETE the old one! If not immediately, go through all the pictures you took at the end of the day and get rid of any that aren’t perfect.
3. Consider before you shoot
Do you REALLY need another sunset? A shot of the dinner you ate? A picture of sand and waves with no people? Take pictures of what is important – the people you are spending time with. Those are the memories you want to keep.
4. Organize quickly
Don’t wait 4 months to upload the pictures to your computer and then try to rename, organize, etc. Do it at the end of your trip (or, If you have a laptop, do it throughout your trip). Or designate a day a month to get your photos organized (or if you take a LOT of pictures, designate a day every week or two to do it!).
There are lots of ways to share your photos. Get prints and add them to frames – rotating pictures through frames is a great way to keep your family photos up to date. Or use a digital frame that you can load several pictures to. Make a scrapbook with your photos of different trips or events. If you don’t think your crafty enough for this, try doing it online. There are lots of great places to do this.
Snapfish is a free online photo service. You can upload your photos and share them by sending a link out through email, or even through facebook, twitter, and other social media outlets. You can also create photo albums online that will then be printed in a book for you. Snapfish also offers other printing mediums, such as mugs, clothing, and greeting cards, among others.
This is a great free tool for the amateur photo editor. You can upload and store lots of photos. This website also allows you to share photos through links and social media. It offers lots of options for editing and playing with your pictures, but this website doesn’t offer much in the way of printing your photos.
Also free, Picasa is a google product. This makes it really easy for google+ users out there to share their pictures within their circles.
Shutterfly offers free, unlimited web hosting of your pictures. You can order prints for pickup at local stores, create gifts such as calendars, photo books and cards, mugs, etc. Shutterfly also offers free personalized websites.
Flikr is powered by yahoo.com. It offers free uploading, and the ability to share pictures through social media.
This option I’m less familiar with. It is offered through the craft store Michael’s, and offers the ability to upload pictures, add paper and embellishments. This seems to be a good option if you want to create a scrapbook feel, without having to buy all the paper and embellishments separately. Once uploaded and created you can print at home, order a photo book, create calendars or photo cards. Watch out though, this has the potential to be very time consuming and costly.
How do you keep your pictures under control?