Do You Know Where They Are Right Now?
Family photos are amongst our most treasured possessions. They are very personal and capture one of a kind moments in your family's history. They will be the record of your family for generations to come.
If you had to quickly vacate your home right now, and your family was safe, would you know where your photo collection is?
Here are some TIPS we found useful in helping to make your collection even more valuable.
Get the best ones printed out to store in acid free albums. Take the time to write on the backs with "what, where and with whom." Thin out any repetitive ones.
Get them off of your computer. Spread favorites out to friends and family through email or social websites. Computer hard drives can crash after several years.
Use "archival quality" CD's and DVD's. (Search that phrase with your favorite search tool.) Many of the regular disks we normally use to save things on can deteriorate. Store them with recommended sleeves or pages.
Organize, organize, organize. Toss any photos that are blurry or have faces that are unrecognizable. Save the vacation shots with your family in front of scenic spots and toss out most of the others. Your kids can view any "pro" shots in seconds on line or in magazines in the future. Keep only the ones you are especially proud of if you can't part with them all.
Take a ton of shots with today's digital cameras but play editor together with your family when the event is over and DELETE most photos so you do not get too overwhelmed. (I know I tend to procrasinate in doing something with the photos when I look at the photo count in the hundreds, it is too easy to do!)
Finally, although it is quite obvious, it bears repeating, No food or drink near family photos. That means adults too. Wine has a special attraction to things it should stay away from.
Are you worried about missing something? Not every occassion needs to have a camera out. Kids who are opening gifts will get annoyed quickly if they have to keep stopping to pose for Mommy. Get a good one and then put the camera down!
Make an attempt to at least pull out a camera at some event each quarter in a year. Time flies and you will want some bench marks documented. As Damone said in the Fast Times At Ridgemont High movie, "the shyness routine is really starting to bore me.." Get people's attention, pull in close and take some memorable shots!
Does your Aunt or Grandfather duck and squirm when the camera comes out? Make it fun to smile for the camera. A great way to catch them off guard and increase your odds of getting better family photos is to start using your "continuous shot" feature on your camera outdoors or when you aren't using a flash. Most cameras have delays in recharging the flash and will defeat the purpose because they will not click fast enough. With three "rapid fire" shots, you'll like the results. (Remember to only keep the best ones. They all will look similar, so make the cuts so you do not get too overwhelmed later.)
Looking for inexpensive gifts in these down times? If you are a parent or grandparent, when your family asks you what you would like for your birthday or other holiday, ask for a framed photo that they like of themselves. If you are looking to give something to the person who has everything, give them the same. Year after year, the gift will not get old, just more treasured. Your family photos are your badges of honor. If you do not think of them that way, I bet there is someone you know that will.
Return to Home From Family Photos