Organizing Your Photos: Part One – Planning

There are so many ways to organize your photos. There is no one wrong or right way, just the way that is easiest and most convenient for you. Please take away from these articles, what will work for you, whether it is only one way, or a combination of organizational methods.

It is not necessary to have all your photos sorted and organized before you put together your first album. However, the photos you choose to put in that album need to be organized.

You will also find it less overwhelming to begin with your most recent photos and work backwards. No matter how you choose to organize your photos, the following two steps are important.

Set up an area to work in with plenty of space and far away from food, drinks or extreme temperatures.

Plan ahead by the types of albums you’d like to create. For instance, I do one family album per year and then a school year album for each child. I often do several smaller albums throughout the year (vacations, special events, holidays, etc..)

Think of the types of albums you might actually create:

  • ABC
  • Anniversary
  • Birthdays
  • Business Portfolio
  • Celebration
  • Children (1 for each)
  • Christmas or another holiday
  • Family
  • Friends
  • Gifts (for grandparents, friends, etc)
  • Heritage
  • Hobby
  • Senior Year
  • Sports
  • Retirement
  • Reunion
  • Wedding
  • Yearly

My main album is our family album. I do one for each year. Therefore, when sorting photos into piles, I start by year.

When this is complete, and it’s not a fast task, because I literally have tens of thousands of photos, I then begin by the most current year.

I would pick up 2006. We are only four months into 2006, so it’s fairly easy. I will then categorize them by month. After that’s complete, I might also categorize them by date. Sometimes that’s difficult because I didn’t date them, but usually you can tell if it was in January 2006 or April 2006 based on the attire or the events in the photos.

If you use digital photos, and you have them on your computer, the same thing applies. You will need to plan ahead and begin making folders for them. Start by year, and then break it down by month. And then perhaps by event.

Sorting your photos in this way will make it easier when working on your layouts.

In Organizing Your Photos: Part Two – Sorting are some additional tips to make sorting your photos easier and establishing time lines.