How good are you at saving, storing, printing and displaying your photos? Are these precious memories laying precariously on a memory disk waiting to be attacked by some weird digital virus? Are they laying dormant in your computer waiting to crash and burn?
This weeks post has been inspired by my week of collating photos for my husbands 40th birthday celebrations. I have had lots of laughs, a few tears and an overall flooding back of all manner of memories as I waded through the images. This last week has again reminded me just how fast time is going, and just how quickly those around me (myself included) are changing, growing and greying.
Whilst I am a photographer and photos are what I love, I often have people comment on their own lack of good ‘photo procedures’. They love looking at the books that lay on my coffee table and the prints and canvas’ that adorn my walls but often lament their own inability to keep up with their own photo taking, displaying and storing. You don’t have to be a photographer however to develop good photo practises, so here are a few reminders for those of you who struggle.
Take Lots of Photos
Whilst this is something that comes more naturally to some, taking photos need not happen only on special occasions. There really is no excuse now with the compact size of cameras and the always improving quality of phone cameras. Some of my favourite photos of my kids have been from those impromptu moments, those everyday instances that turn into everlasting memories.
This one was result of a tube of zinc cream and a distracted mother breastfeeding a newborn. ( taken on an iphone)
Back up your Photos
This is something that I and many others have learnt the hard way. Once photos are off the camera, (and this should be done regularly as cameras get lost and stolen) then it is important to make sure that you don’t leave all your images on the computer in the hope that you will one day do something with them. As great as our technology is, it occasionally stuffs up. Computers crash, get wiped and stolen, and thus you run the risk of losing precious memories. I now back up onto CD’s or USB sticks and save to a portable hard drive. I even have some special photos and documents stored at my mums house in case we have another theft, or god forbid the house burns down!
Be Creative and Display
There are so many ways to display photos now that we no longer have to bore people with slide nights or make them wade through dusty old photo albums. With my own family photos I now print a coffee table book at the end of each year, which is far more inviting for people to flick through. I have also done one for each of the older boys from birth until their first day of school. This was a little time consuming at first as 2 of them were born before the digital age so it meant scanning in their photos, but it was definitely worth it as they now love looking and laughing at themselves as they have changed through the years. I use a company called Momento, but now there are many cheaper options that are available just about anywhere you get photos developed.
Printing your photos onto canvas is another great way to display your images as artwork. I also love making collages of different subjects and can very quickly and easily drop and drag photos to create prints such as the ones below. For these I used Picasa and it literally took me 5 mintues. And of course there is always the baby photos printed on a stubby holder….if you don’t think that is just a little bit wrong!
And let us not forget how easy it is to make your photos look professional with the abundance of photo apps available on your iphone that allow you to quickly and easily add all sorts of filters and edits to give your happy snaps a creative burst. Some of my favourites are Instagram, Pictureshow, qbro, Picframe, Dynamic Light and Camera+.
But whatever your “photo practises’ may be, I encourage you to try and get a system in place so that you always have this precious, priceless and tangible way to remember people, places and moments in time.