Wednesday, February 3, 2010

wfmw - organizing pictures.

so do you have a total headache awaiting you when you click into your picture folder on your computer?

or do you even use a picture folder?

i know that i'm definitely guilty of saving mine all over my computer.  a folder on my desktop full of christmas pictures.  another folder in my 'documents' folder that i saved pictures in for a blog post.  some pictures saved in picasa.  some on iphoto.  some in the picture folder.  really just everywhere.

a mess.

well, during the last few snow days i decided that i was sick of seeing the "organize pictures" bullet on my todo list that has been there for the last six months.  so i broke down and organized them.

and honestly?

it was not that bad.

it all started when looking for a photoshop help book at barnes and noble.  i came across a small book about organizing pictures.  i didn't buy the book and in fact i just flipped through it but during flipping through it i pulled out one little piece of advice.

organize your pictures by month and year.  and keep a calendar.

i know your thinking whaaat?

how am i supposed to put pictures from mother's day, aunt edna's ninety-eighth birthday, ellie mae's birth and our trip to myrtle beach all in the same folder.  along with the everyday pictures.  that's a ton of pictures.  and my ocd wants them all to be in individual folders!

well, believe me.  i had the exact same thoughts.

[except i don't have an aunt edna or an ellie mae.  but we do go to myrtle beach and i did have an aunt mabel - she was my favorite, by the way.]

so, that got me thinking about what would be the best idea for my pictures.  i mean, if i was going to do this - i wanted it to be done right.

especially since it had been on my todo list for the last 6 [plus] months.
[okay, you got me - maybe since 2008 but whatev, okay?  don't judge.]

okay, so....on to the real reason i'm writing all of this.

i did it.  i organized all of my pictures based on month and year.  after going round and round i decided that would be the best way.

now, the suggestion is that you organize based on month and year and then you keep a calendar so that you can look back to 2008 and find what month you took your trip to washington, dc.  except it would be waaay better to keep an online calendar.  like a google calendar.  because then you can search for the event you are looking for and it will pull right up.  so you don't have to look through all of 2008 and try to decipher your reading in those tiny little blocks in your 2008 planner.  if you can even still find your 2008 planner.  

which i can't.  

so, because my ocd kinda went a little bizzerk, i decided to make an excel file that kept track of each month and year.  [thank you fmil for the idea].  there are columns for events, trips, projects and photography.  so then, when i'm looking for my sister's junior prom i can look in my excel file and i'll know what folder to look in.

and now, i've backed them up by putting all the folders on my external harddrive and shutterfly.  and i'm also going to make cds of the pictures.  [again, don't judge - my ocd is a little overwhelming].  

so hopefully 10 years from now i'll still be using the same method and i'll be able to find all my pictures.

i know this may seem crazy, but i think it's going to work for me.

if your pictures are already organized, i'd love to know what system works for you.

click on over to Kristen's blog, We Are THAT Family, for more great tips!


  1. I really need to do mine too! You are one up on always are!

  2. That's been on my to-do list for at least as long as it was on yours. The project is compounded by the fact that we moved three computers into two and all of them had pictures, so I have pictures not only on the two computers, but on a bunch of flash drives! Anyway, I also think that the best way to organize is by month and year. One of these days I'll get around to actually doing it!

  3. I use Memory Manager software from Creative Memories... it automatically organizes every image by month & year & even day! It will even scour your computer to find all those random images and bring them into the "memory vault". What I like best about it is that I can journal any notes I want with any individual or a batch of photos! What's more, it reminds you to back everything up. I am a CM consultant, so I have a link on my blog to my website if you want to check it out! I came over from WFMW. Blessings!

  4. I do that except I put them in their own folder by date so it would say 2010>January>Snowdays 1.10.10 and it makes a world of difference!