Many people do not really know how many photos they have laying around in boxes, in bags, or in old family albums. This article will highlight some ideas on preserving those photos for generations to come and at the same time enjoy the process. Are your photos in totes as pictured above? Yikes!! Time to do something!
Do you have boxes of older family albums? Do you have boxes of loose photographs? Do you want to preserve those items for future generations? Most of us want to pass down those family memories to our children and grandchildren once we are gone, but don’t know how to do that besides just handing them boxes of stuff!
One way we are preserving those family photos is to digitize them by scanning. Scanning a box of photos sounds simple enough for a single week’s task until you stare down several large plastic bins of photos that you inherited from other family members. Your first thought is what do I do with all these images? Your second thought is will anyone care about these besides me?
When sorting through a box of old photos, develop a keep-toss-share mentality to help you organize, and preserve family photos for scanning. Sort your images based on time periods, groups, family members, trips, events, etc.
Many people choose to set aside the scenic images, whether they know where they were taken or not, and business photos. Photos of family friends get their own separate pile. If this sounds like a lot of work, you are correct. It can be over-whelming to even think about starting the process. So remember to set aside about 4 hours of time to start, then check to see where you are after that initial session.
If you decide that it is too much for you to do, think about hiring a professional!
I am dedicated to helping you preserve your family history photographs and projects. Check out my website, www.PhotoOrganizingSolutions.net and sign up for my newsletter.
Sue Thornton, Photo Organizing Solutions, email@example.com
Everyone has pictures they want to Organize, but just don’t know where to start. When I meet with people and talk to them about the organizing process this is the the statement I hear the most — where do I start!!!!
1. The most logical place to start is Sorting the photos. This could take you many hours or just a few depending on how many printed photos you have. If you are storing them in the original envelopes from the developer, you will need to determine if there are duplicates that are not needed anymore. Back a few years ago, like in the 1990’s, duplicate copies were given at no charge. You could give copies to family members or scrapbook them which many people would do.
2. Once you have successfully sorted all those photos and removed the duplicate copies you can begin fine tuning that process. I suggest your first sort would be by year. This way you can have a decade of photos all together. The second sort would be by person or occasion, like birthday or holiday. To make storage easier you can put those photos into archival safe boxes that look like a shoe box with dividers. Archival Methods has many types of these boxes and supplies which I highly recommend.
3. Then I suggest you scan your most important photos to make sure they can be kept in a safe place for family to access at a later date. After scanning and putting in all of the metadata about each photo you should have a record, in order, of your photo legacy. You can use cloud storage to store your photos in like www.forever.com where you would actually buy the amount of storage you think you need. You own it and can add photos as you like. Your photos will be kept for 100 years and they can be printed or downloaded by your family.
4. Now that everything is sorted and organized you can actually make wonderful gifts out of those photos. I like to make a year book at the end of each year using the best, fun photos taken during the year. It is a great gift for someone special or a keepsake for yourself.