I am coming clean! I do not have ALL my photos organized contrary to popular belief! But I have a resolution that they will be in 2023. I do have over 90,000 videos, photos, scrapbook albums scanned and document files uploaded safe and secure in my FOREVER Storage account, but I have one cabinet of stuff to go through and either scan or pitch. Yes, I said pitch! I do keep my most favorite photos as I still like to touch and feel, and for posterity as I would not think to throw away any of my vintage photos of great-grandparents. And I know one day these photos will be vintage and some of the last printed photos of this generation. So I will organize the best of those photos to add to my vintage collection of family photos and will document on the back who is in the photo and date if I know it. Be sure to use either a soft lead pencil or a Stabillo pencil as ink or a hard lead pencil will damage your photo.
If you’re ready to start organizing, feel free to join me December 31st either in person or virtually to work on your project. It’s always more fun to have others doing the same thing and encouraging one another. I hold these events each month to help us all make progress! Just check out the Events tab https://photosolutionsforever.com/events/ and register.
If you want to get organized on your own, here are a few quick tips for organizing the physical photos and videos/slides/negatives you have.
- Gather all your old media in one place (videos, reel to reel, negatives, slides, audio tapes, etc)
- Set aside old media to send to be digitized https://www.forever.com/ambassador/lisakirkley/digital-conversion
- Go through physical photos – determine how you want to organize them (chronologically, by person or family, or event like birthdays, Christmas, trip to Disney)
- Write on index cards your categories
- Gather tools; archival quality boxes; Stabillo pencil, and trash can
- Ask yourself these questions while organizing:
- Which is the best photo of the three or ten copies I have of the same photo? (If there are multiple people in the picture you can choose to make piles instead of tossing and give those you collect to that person. Less guilt than throwing away.)
- Is this photo blurry, does it tell a story, is it the only photo I have of this person or event? (The answers will help you decide to keep or toss.)
- Do I want to digitize this photo to have forever? (make a pile of photos to scan or once organized in boxes you can begin scanning process)
- Begin sorting the photos, label the back of the photo with names and date if possible and sort in the corresponding box.
Let’s tackle our photo mess, the scary box or tub, or shoe boxes of photos once and for all! 2023 can be our year to get our photos organized and free up that closet space!