I am determined to get my photos under control. I can never decide what I want to do, so I end up doing nothing at all. I think the main problem is I want a way to collect and organize my photos, but I also want to be able to actually look at them—and I’m much more likely to do that with a physical copy rather that clicking through a slideshow on the computer. And! The other problem! I take way too many pictures. So basically, I’m overwhelmed. I’ve been saying that I’m going to organize my photos for years now, but I’m finally doing something about it!
A few different ideas on the internet got my attention: this pin about Family Yearbooks.
Then I found the Simple as That blog, and I love what Rachel has to say about her monthly photo collages:
“A couple of years ago I started this little month-in-photos project. I’d just had my fourth baby and wasn’t feeling like I could tackle project 365 that year, but I still wanted to do something to record our monthly happenings. This simplified approach has been so perfect for me! I love sitting down at the end of each month to go through our photos and create a photo collage highlighting the significant events of that month. I’ve let go of the idea that I need to record EVERY detail with these collages. I include some point form journaling telling what the photos are about and leave it at that.”
The wheels in my head really started turning, and I finally came up with something that might work for me.
The idea is simple: each month, choose 8-10 photos from the hundreds (thousands?) of digital pictures stored on my computer. Set them aside in a separate “Yearbook” folder on the computer. At the end of the year, create a Family Yearbook using online photo site. Ta-da! Why didn’t I ever think of this before?
I want some kind of physical book of photos, so they’re not stuck on the computer, but trying to choose the right photos at the end of a year is completely overwhelming. So I’m hoping that if I do the choosing a little at a time, month by month, it will be much easier to put it all together at the end of the year. We’re a two-person family right now, but hopefully this will help me start a good habit for corralling photos in the future.
I got so excited about my new strategy that I went through all my digital pictures for 2011, 2010, 2009… but I lost steam at 2008. Still, it was progress! With those pictures culled and organized by month (the hard part), I went straight to Shutterfly to make my yearbooks (the fun part). I’ve used Shutterfly before—for Christmas cards and to make photo books as gifts—but since the last time I’ve used the site, they have come out with a lot more customizable options.
There are tons of themes for photo books now, complete with “stickers” and embellishments—it’s like simplified digital scrapbooking without the fuss or cost!
The best part was that there was a sale—50% off—so I made two books for the price of one. Now the years of 2011 and 2010 are crossed off my list!
Which is all well and good for setting up the picture organization of 2013. And even for 2012—I can get caught up pretty easily, and make a new book at the end of the year. But what about the years before? The years of photos—both digital and film—that are squirreled away on the computer and in those bulky photo albums taking up space on the bookshelf? That’s the real problem.
So now, on to 2008 and prior… I am dreading having to scan the prints that aren’t digitalized, but I’m going to stick with my one month at a time strategy. It seems much more manageable to choose a few of the best pictures for each month instead of staring at 300 pictures in an album and feeling overwhelmed. I’ll let you know my progress!
And since Shutterfly is running a blogger discount, I’m sharing my 2011 photo book below!
(For a 10% discount on my part—but I would’ve used Shutterfly anyway, so this is just an extra bonus and in no way a sponsored post.) I’m so excited to be tackling this photo organization project that’s been bothering me for so long! Thanks, Pinterest : )
I’m linked up to a few of my favorite Pin-spiring link-ups:
Hey, that’s Pin-tastic!, hosted by I Love You More than Carrots
Bake, make, or decorate… but most importantly, do!
Pinteresting Project, hosted by Lulu & Sweet Pea
The Pity Party at Thirty Handmade Days!