Apr 18 2010

Practical Ways to Preserve Your Digital Photos

Published by at 6:57 am under Tips and Ideas

Many of our memories are best preserved in our collection of pictures. Of course, it used to be very important to preserve not only the picture but also the negative so that other prints could be made. Now young people don’t even know what a negative is! So how can I preserve my digital memories?

First, with digital capabilities, don’t hesitate to take plenty of pictures. Since it doesn’t cost any more to take extra pictures, take many more than you want to keep. To prepare for a recent trip to visit relatives, I purchased a camera with a four gig card. When I got home, in spite of taking lots of pictures, my camera said I could still take another 10,000 pictures without running out of memory!

Once you have collected a good number of pictures, don’t be afraid to delete the ones that aren’t up to standard, or that are duplicates of others. Don’t feel you have to keep every picture. On the other hand, don’t be shy about keeping one that is special, though it isn’t your best shot. After all, it doesn’t cost anything to keep it except memory.

Computer programs allow you to set up electronic photo albums and catalog the pictures in whatever way you want. Be sure to identify each picture as to place, time, event. My basement shelf contains a box of slides from my deceased parents but I don’t know the subjects. If they had labeled them clearly, they would be much more useful.

At this point you may feel you are done with your project. But take a second to think about the fragility of your memories. Without paper copies, they could be gone in a second! If they are on floppy disks, you might not even have the media to read them any more! Further, the presence of a random magnetic field could likewise destroy them.

CDs seemed, at first, to be indestructible. Since nothing needed to touch the surface, nothing wore out. But simple scratches, breaks, or heat damage could destroy your memories.

One answer to this is storing your photos in several places and several locations. That is, if you put them on a CD, make copies and store at least one copy in another home, at work, in a safety deposit box. Before your hard drive is backed up regularly, and, if possible, back it up also on a network drive in another location. And as media changes, be sure to also update your copies. Think what you would have if your precious pictures were only on 5 ¼ floppy disks!

Today we can take and distribute, without printing, more pictures than people care to see. But with this decrease in expense, don’t forget the fact that no amount of money can bring them back if they are permanently deleted.

Hopefully these tips will help you. But if you’re more interested in a professional handling your photography, consider the services of Del Haven Studio, an accomplished photographer in Virginia Beach. View their website portfolio for samples of their quality.

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