5 Steps to Conquer Photo Overwhelm

5 Steps to Conquer Photo Overwhelm

Gathering and organizing your photos could be a daunting task. This blog will outline 5 steps to follow to keep you on track and conquer the overwhelm that comes with so many photos.

Taking pictures is SO easy, how hard could it possibly be to organize them? Well, the hardest part is staying focused. To NOT go down the rabbit hole of days gone by and people from the past. Of course, easier said than done!

Following these steps should help you stay on track:

1. Area of Concentration

If you have both physical photos and digital photos, make a conscious decision on which to tackle first. If you have lots of old photos, it may be wise to start with the physical photos because they might be fragile.

2. Gather Material

The next step is to gather all the material to one place.

Physical photos need to be gathered from closets, boxes, bins, albums – anywhere they may be stashed away. Find an out-of-the-way place to collect them. Finding such a place would mean that you don’t have to take the project down after each session.

Digital photos need to be gathered from on-line sources, SD camera cards, text messages, USB drives, old CD’s, and anywhere else they may be hiding. All the images need to be gathered to one place, I recommend an External Hard Drive (EHD). Create a folder called “Source”, then create subfolders for each of the sources. At this point, don’t worry about duplicates.

3. How to Organize

You need to think about the end-goal of the project when deciding how to organize the photos. Is the goal to share the images with friends and family on-line, such as Dropbox or Google Drive? Is the goal to make photo books? Or, perhaps, something else?

Some suggestions for organizing the photos are: Chronologically, by person, by event, or some combination of these.

While organizing the photos, curate them. Throw out the photos which no longer have meaning to you, such as landscapes, blurry photos, photos of people you don’t remember, duplicates and near duplicates. What if a particular landscape photo pulls at your heart-stings? By all means, keep it!

4. Physical Organization

Digital photos should be organized on an EHD, as noted above, in #2. Physical photos should be organized in your out-of-the-way location into marked baggies, or boxes or stacks. If using boxes, you could get 5” x 7” index cards, write a label on the short side and up-end it in the box as a place holder.

Continue curating your photos as you place them in the box or bag.

5. Mindset

This might be the hardest part.

In order to get the project done, set aside a specific amount of time to work on it. If you know you can concentrate for only one hour, set aside one hour to work on it. Turn off your cell phone for the one hour, allow yourself the time to actually concentrate on the task. The point is to avoid distractions and to set achievable goals.

Remember, these photos are at least 30 years old. If it takes another month or two to organize them, it won’t make a difference in the long run.

If you need help with any part of this, or would prefer to turn over the entire collection to be organized, you can contact me at amira@PreciousMemsPhoto.com

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