Yesterday, I wrote about how to best store your digital documents. You can find that here. Today, the focus is going to be on pictures. Gone are the days of gigantic photo albums, waiting to get your film developed, and waiting to see how many of your pictures turned out. Now, pictures are on demand, and you can edit and perfect them as you see fit.
So, in this on-demand world, what do you do with all of those pictures? They take up plenty of space on your phone or tablet, so where to put them? I’d suggest either saving them on a portable hard drive, your computer, or in the cloud. My wife and I have a 1 Terrabyte portable hard drive that we store our pictures on. The great part of it is that you can share it between devices. Saving it to your computer is another easy way, just plug your device into the computer and save. For many, though, saving to the Cloud is the easiest. If you’re an Apple user, you can save to ICloud. You can also use Dropbox, Google Photos, Amazon Photos and others. All of these are helpful tools, the only drawback is the limitations on space before you have to purchase more space.
The same principle applies for pictures as it does documents. You don’t want them just haphazardly thrown in one big lumped file. The organization can happen as you see fit. You can break it down by year, by subject, by month, however you want. And as with the documents, it’s a lot of work upfront, but once you get your storage organized as you want it, it’s very easy to keep up with. Also, once you’ve saved your pictures from your device, delete them if you don’t want them on your device. That frees up more space. This is a process I’ll be starting very soon, but I’ll be doing it while watching football, so I’ll be multitasking!
But what about those old not digital pictures? How do you store them? You can continue to store them as you have in the past, or you can digitize them. Either you can scan them in a flatbed scanner (or if you’ve got a printer/scanner combo) or you can use your phone. I’ve found a great app called Scannable, which connects to your Evernote account (and if you’re not using Evernote....well, that’s another blog post) and you can save to it. Also, the app Tiny Scanner works just as well.
Finally, if you want to share photos, you can get a digital picture frame and upload your pictures to that. Many of them connect via wi-fi, so that’s an easy way to share pictures with those around you. Another way that my wife has found, which is super easy and inexpensive is www.chatbooks.com. For $10 you can have your pictures automatically uploaded from social media, your devices, wherever. She’s made a bunch of them for our girls and summer adventures.
I highly encourage you to consider digitizing your photos. They are great snapshots and memories of your life. As I have seen in the area around me over the past year with Hurricane Harvey, water comes and destroys, no matter how valuable your things are or what your income status is. If you have solely physical photos, they may be gone forever. But if you have digital copies, you’ll be able to see those pictures and remember.
Check out the Uncluttered course as it will help you if you’re stuck in your journey of minimalism, or if you’re wanting to dive in.
Also, join The Minimalist Musician group on Facebook
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