My biggest summer resolution was to catch up on scrapbooking. I’m not there yet, but I’ve made a sizable dent in it. As I scrap, I’m also organizing my photos, deleting duplicates and only keeping those with meaning. I save about 5,000 photos a year (imagine how many I take, since I’m the queen of deleting while they’re still on the memory card in the camera). As I’ve been culling this summer, I find I really only want to keep about 1,500 of those each year. I know, it’s still a huge number.
I was completely overwhelmed as to how to go about this organization. Once upon a time (meaning when I had only one hooligan), each quarter I printed, backed up on CD, and backed up on an external hard drive all my favorites. That fell by the wayside about, oh, five years ago. You can see why I wake up at night in a cold sweat, worrying about this. You can’t? Oh,well, so I’m a little compulsive.
I came up with a catch-up schedule that’s working really well. One week I organize and print my favorites from a quarter, ruthlessly deleting all those so-so and redundant photos. The following week, I digitally scrap the photos from that quarter. I just made a little note on my calendar of what quarter is what week (I’m working backward in time) and it’s going pretty quickly. The organization and cleaning up takes about an hour, then the scrapping takes about 5 or 6 the following week. I try to do a month a night(after the hooligans are in bed, of course) on the the weeks I’m scrapping.
The renaming system I decided on works really well, too. In my “Pictures” file on my computer, the files are automatically created by date as I download photos. I’m consolidating and renaming all those daily folders into one monthly one that contains 4 or 5 subfolders. For example, for June, 2012:
Folder Name is 0612
The subfolders in that file are:The photos in each subfolder have names like “0612 MKE Zoo(1)” or “0612 Raspberry Limeade".”
That way, I’m not looking for a certain photo and they’re all named DSC002010 or something.
I know, it sounds tedious, but I’m enjoying looking back and remembering what we were doing when. I’ve even been inspired to make some cool scrap pages. These are some of my favorites, of a couple of days we spent on a Lake Michigan beach last summer.
I print a large number at Costco for only 9 cents a photo. I take mine in on CD (because my internet is only a wireless hot spot and works too poorly to upload them all) and it only takes about an hour before I can pick them…and I can easily waste an hour at Costco! I usually print two quarters at once, to qualify for the discounted price.
If you’re like me and feeling overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of photos you have stuck on your computer, just start small. Organize this month’s photos. Then last, and the last, and so on. You can DO it!