I am borderline paranoid about losing my digital pictures. Seriously….I have them on my computer, I print them, I have a backup drive, and I upload them to a photo site. I know it’s good to backup your digital photos, but I might, just might, take it to an extreme. However, I do think it’s smart to consider various options when backing up photos and to have them in at least 2-3 places. Here are some of the things I do in more detail:
-Leave them on my computer
Now a lot of people leave photos on their computer because that’s where they download them and stay in the dubious ‘To Sort’ Folder. However, I know that those ‘To Sort’ folders are often never sorted or gone through. I absolutely love looking at my pictures so they are kind of ridiculously organized. Here’s the breakdown:
~Within Each year, I have the following categories: Animals, Events, Hanging Out, Holidays and Birthdays, Misc, and Vacations
~Then I break things down by either month or event.
Some people might not like to leave organized folders of their pictures on their computer because they take up so much space. However, I have a decent amount of memory space on my computer and I am constantly going through old pictures, making prints, etc so I like to have them on there.
-Copy them to a back up Hard Drive
I try to back up my entire computer once a month so I have an updated back up file. I don’t always make it on time, but I’m pretty good about it. I use the ‘WD My Passport’ and I love it. It is easy to use, there are version for PC and Mac, and mine has a Terabyte of storage. It was not long ago that if you said the word Terabyte to me, this is what would come to mind:
However, that is a Trilobite. Yes, a Trilobite. Not Terabyte. A Terabyte is 1000 Gigabytes. So I have a lot of storage for my pictures and files.
-Upload them to a photo site
I try to upload all of my favorite pictures and any I might want to share to a photo site. I use Phanfare. Again, it is easy to navigate, with my subscription I get unlimited storage, and the albums are nice looking and customizable. It does cost $99/ year so it’s not for everyone. However, not only do I get unlimited storage, but when I share the albums with my friends and family, they can download the hi res version of any of the photos for free. You can also add music to your album slideshows and order prints, books and gifts right from the site.
However, there are lot of free upload sites too, like Shutterfly and Flickr. They also have a lot of features, I just like the fact that, on Phanfare, all of my photos are hi resolution.
How old fashioned of me!!! Yes, I like actual, hold-them-in-my-hand prints. I like to scrapbook, but I’m about 5 years behind so I really just have boxes of prints. That is an organization project and post in the making. Keep an eye out for it!
Other than the standard prints though, I LOVE photo books. I use Blurb photo books because there are so many customizations, but again, there are a ton of sites that offer photo book design.
These books are great keepsakes, but you can also bet the farm that at least one person I know will get one of these as a gift every year. Is that cheating, to essentially give the same gift every year? I don’t think so!
Ok, so those are the main ways I back up my pictures. I also email them to people and send prints so that other people have copies. And I usually leave the pics on my camera until I’ve at least done a back up on the hard drive. So it might be overkill on the copy of the copy, but it helps me sleep at night! How do you back up and preserve your photos?