Pick a few days this week or next and take action! 10-15 minutes a day and you'll have this done lickety-split. Here's a quick list of how to get them organized and printed without being overwhelmed. You'll be so glad you did. If you want to learn more about how to organize and edit your photos, then stay tuned. Registration details for my new class Getting the Most from Your Photos will be announced in the next few weeks. Newsletter subscribers get first dibs, so go sign up here if you're not already on my list: Subscribe to Newsletter.
Follow these steps to get your photos off the memory cards and into your hands:
- Make a folder for the year if you don't have one already. Name it 2014 Photos. If you need more space on your computer, consider buying an external hard drive. You can get 1 Terabyte USB drives for under $75.
- Make folders inside for each special event or trip. I like to put dates on the folders to keep them in chronological order. Example: 20140625 Yellowstone for our one day trip to Yellowstone on June 25, 2014.
- Make some general folders for everyday shots that aren't really attached to a specific event or trip. I name mine Around the House and Out and About.
- Gather up all your memory cards and start moving files. I open two windows, one for the memory card and one for the photo folders I just created.
- Move only photos from a specific event (use the thumbnail view to see photos and know which ones to select) to the appropriate folder. On PC's you can drag them over. On Macs you'll need to hold the command key when you drag the files so they will be moved and not copied. If you use move instead of copy, you'll know when all the files on your memory card have been properly relocated and organized.
- Repeat step 5 for each memory card you have - make sure the memory card is empty before you eject it. This will help you be sure it's ready to be reformatted and used.
- Once you have your photos copied over. Pick 2-10 photos from each folder to print. Flip through them after the kids go to bed and force yourself to select some from each folder. If you come across a bad photo (black frame, white frame, completely out of focus, etc.) be sure to delete it so it's not taking up precious memory. If your photo editor allows you to star or select photos, use that feature to document your selections and rejections. If not, COPY your selections to a new folder titled Print. You can also copy your rejections to a folder titled Delete - then delete it when you're ready.
- Upload them to your favorite photo printing site and pat yourself on the back! If you're looking for a good place to print, give mpix.com a try.