How I Organize my Digital Photos

It is the last day of 2011 and one of my tasks today has been backing up digital photos from the computer. I thought this would be a good opportunity to give you a summary of how I organize my photos and ensuring they are backed up.

I have a Panasonic Lumix camera as well as an HTC Salsa phone which is effectively my second camera.

My biggest challenge in digital photography is being able to find the photos I take especially when taken a long time ago. This is how I organize the photos on my Dell computer running Windows XP.

Click on the photos to view full size.

1. I created a folder (directory) called C:\Lumix.  This is where the  Lumix  software (Photo Fun Studio) copies the files from the camera’s SD card to the computer.

2. I chose the setting to create folders based on the Recording Day. This means that each day of photography has its own folder.

3. After I transfer photos from the camera I view the contents of the new folders and change the name of the folder adding a keyword to describe the photos. This allows me to quickly identify the folder where photos may be found. For example, 20111220Birthday.

4. If I have photographed more than one unique event I create a subfolder with the name of the event or place.

5. My archive of photos is stored in another folder C:\My_Media\My_Photos. Inside this folder I created folders for each year (2010, 2011, etc). Inside each year folder is a folder for each month – the name consisting of the month number followed by the month name. This ensures the folders sort chronologically.

6. After I back up the Lumix folder I move the directories from Lumix into the appropriate year and monhth folders in My_Photos.

7. I make a DVD backup of my work every 2 weeks and include the Lumix folder as part of the backups.

8. Photos taken on my phone are copied to the Lumix folder to a folder which I create with the name HTC followed by the date, for example HTC20111219. I might as well keep all the digital photos together and treat them as if taken with the same camera.

Now when I want to find photos and movies I can browse my folders by date or view the thumbnails to find the required photograph.

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