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Archiving

Remember when you took pictures on your film camera, took the roll of film to a store, came back in a week, picked up your photos, and put them in an album for safe keeping? Today, I hear, more and more about computers crashing with years worth of digital photographs lost because they were not archived. Was going digital worth it? Not to that person, I suppose. Denise L. of Pasadena wrote in and asked “How do the Pro’s handle it?” Here is some simple advice on creating a doable work-flow that will ensure the safety of your imagery:

1. Allocate one day in the week to download and archive all your photos from your memory card and then FORMAT YOUR CARD IN CAMERA. (or, better yet, every time you shoot something, download and archive it. It is hard to clean a house that has not been cleaned in months, but it is far easier to keep it clean on a daily basis because there is less work to be done.)
2. When you download create an archive folder system that looks like this:
Create a hardrive folder labeled “Photos.” Inside the Photos folder create a new dated folder labeled as such: “2008-09-11_description-of-shoot”. Inside the dated folder your imagery should be numbered as such: 20080911_0001.jpg
3. Look through all your photos and delete any bad or unusable ones.
4. Create a new folder in the dated folder labeled “Picks” Make a copy of the best photos and place them in this folder. If you have time, do some PhotoShop editing and enhancing to these photos and save as a .PSD file as well as a .JPG file.
5. Open an online photo hosting account and load your imagery. These sites will host (archive) your imagery for free.
Flickr
Photobucket
Kodak Gallery
6. Burn a DVD of the images and label it:
Your name, Date, Subject

7. OPTIONAL: If you are really organized, create contact sheets in PhotoShop and print them out. Then create a file folder system in your office that has hard copies of it all. Below you will see what a contact sheet looks like.
8. OPTIONAL: I create a hard cover book of proofs for each shoot. You can see some of the books at my bookstore

You might want to do this for each year of photos so you have a complete archive every year.

To view more helpful photo tips go to JensTips.com and learn something new today!
Copyright © 2009 by Jen O’Sullivan http://www.jenosullivan.com