Thursday, February 3, 2011

Photo Organization--Part 2

Have you been working on organizing your photos?
That project is still not crossed off my list. I am determined to get to it this winter!

Here are some of my thoughts on how to handle all the different versions of edited photos, as well as what to do to make sure a computer crash never causes you to lose your dear photos.

Regarding edited photos:
When I print photos, I have a mix of edited and non-edited. It is always a bit of a challenge to figure out which one of the little thumbnails is the version I want to print.

For pictures that I edit, I save the new version with the word "edit" added after the file number. It looks like this:  IMG_123edit or IMG_123editBW. (Sometimes there are several versions of the original, i.e. a color version and a black/white or sepia version.) I include something in the new file name to help me know these details. Then when I am uploading to facebook, my blog, or my online printer it makes things much easier.

I keep the edited and original versions in the same folder on my computer, so that I can find the original easily in case I am not happy with the edited version and want to start over or make a change.

Regarding backing up your digital photos:
I have an external hard drive hooked up to my computer. It allows me to choose how often I want it to back up photos, and then it does it automatically. This protects my images from being lost in a computer crash. It would not save them from a fire or natural disaster.

My second "back-up" is my online printer. I use to print and then pick up at my local store. As long as my account is active, my photos are kept in my albums stored on their site. All the photos I have printed over the years could be re-printed, if I ever lost my files  or printed pictures kept at home.

I also use Picasa and Flickr, which are free photo-sharing sites. If you publish photos to an online album, they will be stored in a location separate from your computer. I only have a few of my photos stored in this way. It is really not intended for backing up photos, but some of my favorites are stored online.

One of the best options, there is a fee however, is online storage--websites devoted specifically to storing digital photos. I have not used any of them, but it's a great concept.  The files for all your photos are stored in a place separate from your home, protecting them from computer crashes, as well as fires, floods, and tornadoes.

Regardless of how unorganized your photo files are, get a plan for backing up your files. Don't be fooled into thinking your pictures are safe--a computer crash can happen without warning. You don't want any regrets when it comes to family pictures.

1 comment:

  1. Hi! Photo organization is on my mind... We're really liking Dropbox which has 2 GB of free online storage. As an added bonus you can opt to share certain folders if you wish or keep them all private. I'm pondering whether to try your method of organizing by person rather than by date which is my current system. Mine is harder to find specific pictures of people if I can't remember which year they were taken...

    Anne :)