Picture Organizing Tips

Over the years, photos have been the hardest thing for me to organize. I’m great at organizing my digital photos with folders, sub-folders, and sub-sub-folders. But actual pictures have been a problem for a number of reasons, largely because I’m always changing my mind about the format that I want to organize them in. (Album? Scrapbook? Both?)
In 2007 I finally decided that I would place all my prints in traditional photo albums, and whenever we have kids I’ll continue to do this, but I’m also planning to create scrapbooks using only the best photos from each special occasion.

I’m still not a photo organizing expert, but I was able to come up with a list of basic organizing tips for anyone like me who has been challenged in the past by photo organization.


Tips for Dealing with Tangible Photos:

  • Choose a system and stick to it. Decide if you want to use albums, scrapbooks, or both, and make it a commitment to stick to the system you choose.
  • Before you start to organize your photos into books, decide how you want to organize the photos and the books. (Is there a theme? Will you have a scrapbook for each kid? Will you be organizing your books by year? How many events do you want to be contained in the book? How many pictures do you have versus the space available in your albums?)
  • Place limits on how many pictures you print from each event.
  • Place photos in album or scrapbook as soon as possible to avoid accumulating stacks of pictures.
  • Plan a day each week or each month to have a scrapbooking session. This can be as short as an hour or even just 30 minutes! Put it on your calendar like a a regular appointment and make it a priority. If you plan regular sessions, it will prevent you from accumulating massive stacks of pictures to organize.
  • Write dates and other relevenat information on the back of photos. Even if you have the best memory, you may not always remember everything. Plus, your kids will have the photos long after you’re gone and they may want this information.
  • Date and label your albums.
  • If you keep doubles or extra copies of photos, be sure that these are organized in a photo box. I keep mine in the original envelopes they come in, and I label the packets and place them in order by date into the photo boxes.

Dealing with Digital Photos

  • Plan times to upload pictures from your digital camera.
  • Don’t let too much time pass between uploads or you will be overwhelmed when you start to organize your photos.
  • Immediately place your newly uploaded photos into folders and sub-folders.
  • Delete bad or unnessesary photos before or after uploading.
  • Always keep an extra thumb drive on hand, in case your current one gets full.
  • If you’re using photos for your website or a project, upload them to photobucket, flickr, or another photo site. This way you can access them anytime, and you can delete them from your computer or thumb drive, leaving more space for your family photos.


I’m linking this post to WFMW at We Are That Family


  1. Jerri,
    These are great tips! I am a fellow scrapbook hence my email address. Sometimes it is just overwhelming but this is wonderful.
    Thank you for visiting my kitchen blog. Come on over and visit my family blog when you get a chance at http://bobbisbuzzing.blogspot.com/
    I am loving your blog, it has a little bit of all that I love food, crafting and family.
    Hugs, Bobbi Jo

  2. LISSALYNN2006 says

    i love that idea…thankyou

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