September is Save Your Photos Month

September is Save Your Photos Month

The Save Your Photos initiative is a public service outreach campaign developed by APPO to teach individuals how they can preserve life’s irreplaceable photos, videos, and documents, in case of an unforeseen accident or disaster.  

Protecting your photo and video collection could be the most important thing you do for your children and for generations to come.“  (

So, how does a person with a limited amount of time and limited knowledge about Photo Organizing get started preserving prints, digital photos, memorabilia, and other tangible memories?

Here are some suggestions of how to start a photo project that may seem overwhelming at the outset:

1)    Set aside a specific amount of time to work on the project.  It could be 30 minutes a day, or 30 minutes a week.  Whatever you are comfortable with and believe you can stick to.

2)   You will need boxes, index cards and a marker. 

  1. The boxes could be old shoe boxes, or photo organizing boxes as could be purchased at an arts and crafts store, or any relatively small box which would be able to hold photos without bending them.
  2. I like to use 5×8 blank index cards. But, really, any index card would do.

3)   Start with any group of photos – these could be a group in an envelope, or ones which are clumped together.  Write on the index card something meaningful about this group of photos.  Some examples include:  the year, or the year and event, or just the event, or a person.  NOTE:  Do not stress over the naming on the card.  It just needs to mean something to you.

4)   Stand the card up in front of the group of photos and place in the box.  NOTE:  The groups do not need to be an any kind of order.

5)   Repeat steps 3 and 4 until you have gone through all the photos.  The advantages of this system are:

  1. You do not need to figure out an order for the pictures.
  2. You don’t end up with piles of photos all over your tables and counters. All the photos will be in boxes.
  3. You don’t need to worry about consolidating groups of similar photos.

6)   Get the photos, documents, and memorabilia scanned.  Since these scanned pictures are for posterity, I would recommend getting photo-quality scans.  This means either getting photo-quality equipment, or finding a Photo Organizer who would scan the pictures for you.  I do not recommend copying the pictures using your all-in-one printer and creating .PDF files.  I do recommend creating 600 dpi .JPG files.

The Photo Organizer could discuss various options of what to do with the scanned photos.  These include creating photo books, archiving the originals, creating wall art, and many other options.

To get additional ideas about what a Personal Photo Organizer does, and what could be done with the photos, please visit the Photo Organizers Website:

If you have questions or comments, or would like help with organizing your photo collection, please contact me at I would love to work with you.

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