Organising, enjoying and protecting your photographic memories

Photographs add so much value to our lives by recording special events, people and places.  They allow us to share our life experiences and provide amazing memories.  Whether you are hugely into photographs or simply enjoy taking a few on your phone, there is no better time to ‘brush up’ your skills, diversify your repertoire or simply spend time sorting your back catalogue!
Ten reasons to take photographs 
1)    They preserve new and old memories  of people, places and activities we love
2)    Give us time to digest a moment in more detail
3)    Allow us to enjoy our surroundings
4)    The pride in taking the perfect image - The ‘feel good factor’
5)    It’s quick and easy and not too expensive
6)    Anyone can do it – there are so many filters now that can even make you feel like a pro!
7)    It inspires the creative side of the brain – curate things you love 
8)    It’s a wonderful stress reliever
9)    It documents our life journey – helps us to remember the past in a visual diary
10)    Family immortality – brings our ‘family tree’ to life, remembering those who are far from forgotten  
Today we take more photographs than ever and organising the ‘backlog’ is getting more and more tricky! Photographs bring us so much joy when we look back at them but they can also take up so much space both physically and emotionally.  Some of them may also be bitter sweet but however they make you feel, here are some suggestions on how to organise, collate and enjoy your favourites.

•    Find all your printed photographs - this will take time as you will be tempted to reminisce! These take up space and quite often sit in a dark storage corner. These need to be handled with care
•    Hunt through family albums and ask friends and family if you can scan copies 
•    Go through every device, starting with your phone, laptop, tablet and memory sticks – digital photos present almost no physical storage challenge however we often run out of device storage space because we take so many that we often forget to declutter. Take time as you go along to remove all but the best images – eliminating duplicates along the way to save time
•    Use a single storage device - no matter how many photos you have it is best that you put them all in one place.  Seek advice from an expert who can direct you to an external hard drive with enough capacity for your entire photo library
•    Once you have put all the photos in a single location, come up with a simple and easy to remember folder structure e.g. by year and event
•    Spend some quality time putting your photographs in order – THIS WILL TAKE TIME! – don’t give up, break it down into achievable time slots
•    Backup your photos – now that you have them in order, consider using several local storage locations to back up your photos (or alternatively use an online cloud storage)
•    Display – the best thing about photos is that they allow us to remember joyful times. Consider giving the happiest pictures a place of honour in your home
•    Consider changing images that you display on a seasonal basis -  new talking points for family and friends
•    Share – don’t forget to share photos with friends and family and loved ones
•    KEEP IT GOING – this is one of those tasks that takes dedicated time on a regular basis but the results are worth it!