I am horrible, absolutely HORRIBLE, at printing digital photographs. My youngest had just turned one when I realized that there wasn’t one single photo of her on our walls. I even had an EMPTY frame hanging on my wall, waiting for her newborn photo to be inserted. In all honestly, that empty frame is still hanging. Of course, in my defense, it’s still hanging because it is hung portrait (vertical) and the best photos I have of her are landscape (horizontal). This is what I keep telling myself to make me feel better every time I walk past the empty frame. I once had a friend take a selfie with the empty frame when she was watching my house. She texted me asking what was with the creepy stock photo frame!
Right after realizing there were no photos of last baby anywhere in the house, I rushed all three out to the dry lake bed for a session. I immediately edited them and sent them off for printing! Feeling quite accomplished, I received them and set them aside until I could find frames for them. Within just a few days, my computer crashed. I back up my work religiously, but I hadn’t backed up my recent session of my own kids. I lost all of my photos from that session… all except the ones I printed!
Fast forward a year. I was still “looking” for frames for the impromptu session at the lake bed session, the empty frame still hangs in its place, and there was still no photographic proof of our third child’s existence in our home. Doesn’t that sound horrible? I literally take THOUSANDS of photos, yet the ones on display in my home are more than two years old and missing a child. I am proud to say I hung those photos this last week… but let’s be honest, the photos are already more than a year old. I think I need to start planning my next session. The frame with the stock image still hangs on the stair wall, but I think I am making progress!
I recently came across the article titled, The Most Photographed Generation Will Have No Pictures in Ten Years and it struck a chord about losing those digital images. I have already lost important digital images, and I back up and save more often than the average. Do you back every single image up? Do you move them to better technology? I don’t even know where half of my little jump drives are anymore and my computer doesn’t have a CD drive. My maternity photos from my second pregnancy are on a disc. I can’t view those without finding the (outdated) technology to do so. Sounds like my videos on VHS from when I was a kid. Good thing we have prints from when I was a kid because those videos aren’t easily accessible. Printing digital photographs sounds like a good idea now, doesn’t it?
Thinking of all of this made me realize that something has to change if I want my kids (and their kids) to be able to see what they were like when they were little. It isn’t even for me, or my home decor. It is something for them, that they enjoy having and looking at already, even already at their young ages. I have decided to make it a personal goal to create an annual album for the family, as well printing 4×6 photos for little albums for the kids. They love to see photos of themselves! My oldest has an album and she loves going through it, but sadly its about five years old and no one looks the same!
Of course I love my professional lab, but I don’t really care where you print. The hard part is when are you going to do it? If you don’t do it right away, will you ever? Or will your digital photographs sit in a drawer or on a device? My work is my art. I want you to display it. But more importantly, it is also a story- your story. Where will you put that story? Will your children be able to view your story in ten years?
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