5 simple tips to get your digital photographs organized
I love digital photography for the ability to take 500 pictures of my daughter eating her first birthday cupcake, knowing that the perfect shot will be in there somewhere. But this also means my computer gets bogged down with tons of photo files, often with no label, date, or organizational system. So months later when I'm trying to find that favorite shot among the 500 to frame up for Grandma, it means a lot of wasted time and endless searching of archives.
Since a new year means a fresh start, I've gathered my top tips to get that photo library under control, pared down and uber-organized.
1. Start with a program that works
it's iPhoto or Picasa, find a photo program that you like and use it
for uploading and organizing all your photos. These programs are
designed to help you, and will make organizing and editing a cinch.
2. Delete, Delete, Delete
you do it when you download the pictures from your camera or you do it
once a week, force yourself to go through your pictures and trash the
ones that didn't turn out. You'll save yourself the trouble of searching
through hundreds of dud photographs and save lots of space on your
computer's hard drive.
And while we're talking deletions: Once you download
pictures from your camera card, delete them! Start with a fresh card
every time. There's nothing worse than finding yourself faced with
a Kodak Moment, only with no room on your memory card.
3. Use a labeling system you'll remember
it may be tempting to organize your photos by events, I highly
recommend you start with dates. Organize folders using the heirarchy
system of year and month. Then, within each month you can organize more
specifically by event, subject or people. Trust me, in two years when
you're searching for a specific picture, you're more likely to remember
the date, than if you titled that folder of vacation pictures "Trip to
Grand Canyon" or "Vacation 2012".
4. Back Everything Up!
is nothing more heartbreaking than losing pictures of your loved ones
during a hard drive crash or a toddler distractedly deleting photos
instead of staying on that kid-friendly website.
thought it would never happen to me, but it did. And thankfully, my
favorite photos were safe and sound online. Whether you upload to an online photo service like Picasa
, or my personal favorite, flickr
make sure you also save them on a DVD, or better, a cloud service or external hard drive
like the ones we recommend here.
5. Pick a system and stick with it.
you use one of the ideas above or come up with something that works
better for you, once you come up with a plan, stick with it. Next time
you're scanning the archives for that favorite picture from summer
vacation, you'll be so glad you did. -Molly
Find More: Digital Cameras, Organization, Photography 2.0, Storing and Sharing, Tips and Tricks