Updated: Feb 10
Last week I posted an article detailing the Top 5 Reasons to consider digitizing your documents where I talked about the benefits of having digital copies of your important documents and going paperless with items that are deemed transitory.
Just like those bottomless pieces of paper, it is likely you have a stack of old photos crammed in the bottom of your closet or numerous photo albums with nowhere to store/display them. Some of these photos may be heirlooms from generations past, or old vacation photos taken with a disposable camera before digital & cell phone cameras became our go-to.
Wouldn't you rather have access to these memories at a moment's notice? Wouldn't you like to be able to share these "blasts from the past" with faraway relatives and friends with a click of a button? If so, then digitizing photos is the way to go!
Just like paper files, some people prefer to keep physical prints of their photos, either to put in picture frames around their home or office, to create scrapbooks or memory books, especially for kids, or just to keep in a shoebox and pull out on a rainy day. This is why, even in the current digital age of our society, Paper Organizing is still a requested service for Professional Organizers and does not just apply to documents.
As nostalgic as printed photos may be, there are many advantages to digitizing your photos, no matter what skill level you are at with technology. Listed below are 5 reasons why any homeowner should consider digitizing their photos either with the help of a Professional Organizer or on their own!
1. Clear the Clutter
If you have a small home/space and find that your stacks of photos or albums are taking up valuable real estate in that spare room or office, then consider going digital!
Scanning photos or using a Free App such as PhotoScan for Google Photos, you can easily save thousands of photos to either a USB stick, External Harddrive, or even into the Cloud (i.e. Google Photos, Apple Photos etc.) will take up a fraction of the space, allowing you to store, categorize and organized thousands of photos with ease while also gaining back that valuable space in your home!
It is important however that you digitize only those photos that you wish to keep. Use this opportunity to pair down the collection and remove any blurry, duplicate, overexposed or unnecessary photos from the collection. There is always a danger that you are migrating the clutter from one place to another, so the same organizing principles of clear, categorize & organize should be followed!
With the ability to have the entire Internet at our fingertips 24/7 with our Cellphones & Tablets, having access to digital photos is now both simple and convenient. As the photos are digitized, they should be named & filed in a folder structure that makes sense to the owner so everything can be easily accessed and located at a moment's notice, reducing stress & anxiety.
If saving to the Cloud, creating Albums based on the vacation, or activity can help you quickly find those photos with ease to share with others, attach to emails, or even send in text message threads.
3. Preserve Memories
If you have a young child or children or inherited photos of generations past and want to preserve the memories without fear of damage and hold a special sentimental attachment, then digitizing is the perfect solution!
With digital copies of photos, you can easily create a digital scrapbook in Apps such as Skrappify or Photofy at the click of a button! These memories can easily be shared with family and friends from afar either with Social Media or even by creating shared albums in Google Photos to allow others to see and also add their own photos to the album with ease.
4. Back-up of Important Photos
There is nothing more devastating than losing sentimental items, be it from a fire, or accidentally thrown out with the recycling. To give you an extra layer of security and peace of mind digitizing photos so they are accessible at any time and any place is a great solution!
For example, you can save a copy of any important photos on an Encrypted USB stick that is stored in a fireproof safe in your home (along with those important documents!) as well as in password-protected folders in the Cloud so that in the event that you lose your phone, or cannot access your home, your data is still protected.
Always make sure that any files with sensitive information are password protected in the event of theft, and that the photos are also kept up to date with the latest, especially for children & pets!
5. Help the Environment
Last but certainly not least, making the decision to go digital is a great help to the environment. Fewer printed photos save paper and reduce chemical waste. With a digital camera, film processing is less of an environmental burden since there is no film.
Reducing the mountain of photos down to a small box or folder will make a huge difference in both your home and the environment!
How can a Professional Organizer help?
If you're drowning in a sea of photos and not sure where to start, or even what photos you should keep/toss or how best to organize them then it may be a good idea to have a chat with a Professional Organizer.
With their keen eye for detail and objective evaluation of the items and your needs, they can easily help create simple organizing systems, sort the junk from the key photos, and if they have the equipment, can also digitize your photos and share them with you on a USB stick, organized the way you want.
Nowadays it would be hard-pressed to find a Business Owner who is not familiar in some sense with technology or with the process of how to digitize photos. When speaking with your Organizer, ask questions about digitizing photos. Finding a Professional Organizer who is adaptable, knowledgeable, and capable of completing the digitizing process should be able to create exactly what you're looking for.
It's true, that not all Professional Organizers are technology wizards, myself included, but if you've scanned a photo at your home/office or snapped a photo of a receipt with your phone, then you can digitize anything!
Ready to get started?
So am I! Please check out my digitizing photos page to learn more!
Fill out the form here to arrange your free 30-minute consultation with me, a Certified Professional Organizer, today!
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About the Author: Brittany Smith lives in Ottawa, Canada with her husband and feline furbaby Zoey. She is a Certified Professional Organizer, Owner, and Founder of Control the Chaos, a Professional Organizing business that provides personalized in-home, virtual and digital organizing services aimed at transforming anyone's chaos into calm.