Organizing Photos for My Family Yearbook
Yearly Photobook

Organizing Photos for My Family Yearbook

I have been very eagerly working on our family yearbook for 2018 lately. The plan is to have it completed as quickly as possible now that we are into the new year. It looks like I will be a little later than expected, but I’m also planning to post my process to you guys as I go along as well. My photos are already all organized and prioritized by favorites. My next step is to start placing photos and setting my book up. But, before I go any further I wanted to share how I organize my photos and get set up to start working on my family yearbook.

Below I have four steps that I take in order to organize and select my favorite photos. 

1. CULL

The best advise I have received in the photo department is to delete the unnecessary. Cull through and, yes, delete anything that you know you will truly never use. Blurry, off cropped, nothing photos… get rid of them. This is the hardest for me because I’m a photo packrat and I hate deleting photos. Now that my son is here I am more than overwhelmed with photos and videos, so this step is crucial for saving space and ensuring I have only the best shots later on.
Deleting bad shots as you take them is a big life saver, but it can’t always be done. So use any extra few minutes that you might find yourself with to do this part; while pooping, waiting through commercials, winding down before bed, and during your kid’s nap time are all great times to pick through a few photos.

2. PLAN & ORGANIZE

Start by going to your computer, hard drive, or wherever you plan to store your photos and make a master folder. You can call this whatever you like, but most people use ‘photos’. Before my son it was just that, simply photos, but now all of our photos on my computer are in “Dorian’s Photos Main”. This folder is where I keep everything before I transfer to the hard drive.
After you have your main folder, create some subfolders. The most simple format is to use months and years, e.g. August 2018. You can even plan for holidays and other occasions by placing subfolders into the corresponding months. For example, create a Halloween folder in October, a Christmas folder in December, and birthday folders for each family member in the respective months.
All of these folders are set up at the beginning of each year so that I can easily offload media from the phones or SD cards if I’m in a hurry.

As you probably notice, I have numbers before the months. The numbers actually go along with the months my son has been born, but this is mainly so that I can easily sort them.
My master drive looks a little different from this picture though. Inside the main photos folder I have just the years, then inside of that I have the months without the year attached to the name.

3. GATHER

Once you have your folders organized and planned out, you should start off loading photos to the correct months. It is very important to have all of your media in one place before you start the next step. I try my best to empty our phones and camera at least every 2 months. If you set up a routine it will be better in the long run. 

4. SELECT YOUR FAVORITES

Before you can start working on your book you have to have your top photos selected. Now that you have all your photos in one place you can start choosing your favorites. You can mark these photos in many different ways, but for me I simply add “bb” to the end of the file name. Example IMG_0235bb.jpg. This probably seems strange, but it works for me. I’m not fancy and I need things in a hurry so by doing this I can quickly find my favorites. I chose this way because I don’t like the photos to be out of the original order and I chose “bb” simply because search came back empty on my computer. Usually, I go one by one through the months and choose my favorites from each folder then move on to the next.

 After you have all of your photos selected and ready you can move forward. I will be posting follow ups to this post shortly and will update with links below. 

Want to keep up with what’s happening here? 

 


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