There is an old joke: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. There are more photos taken in two minutes today, than in the whole of the 19th century when photography was invented! That’s a lot of photos! For many people their photos are the elephant in the room, or should I say in the computer and closet. It is so easy to get overwhelmed. When people used film, you took 36 pictures and then had to change the film. Now you just keep clicking until your SD Card is filled with 500 to 800 images or even more, depending on the size of the card. It’s also hard when you can take photos not just with your camera, but your phone as well. Then you have everyone else who is taking pictures and sharing them with you. We are awash in images, and they are everywhere.
Getting all those images organized takes time and ruthlessness. It takes time to look at each image to make good choices as to the quality of the photo, who is in it, and where to put it. Photo organizing software or a sort box helps with this last part. You also need to be ruthless in deleting the duplicates, the blurry, or just plain bad pictures that you know you’ll never look at again. I’ve heard professional photographers say they only keep about 5% of the images they shoot. That’s being ruthless!
Organizing can be made simpler by doing a batch at a time. Do it on the day the photos are taken if possible. That way you will usually have only one event to deal with. You’ll also have fewer photos to go through. The people and stories will be fresh in your mind so you can capture them with the images.
If I keep up with the new photos I shoot, and take some time to work on a small section of older photos that have not been gone through, I will eventually have all my images organized and ready to tell their story. Eating the elephant one bite at a time is the surest way to get from overwhelmed to organized with your photos. Sometimes having someone set up a system that works then helping you get started is the first step along the road. That’s where a Personal Photo Organizer comes in handy. Where are you at in the process of getting organized? Would you like to eat more of the elephant? What would help you move forward?