This post is a little bit personal in nature but I want to get a very important message across to everyone….
March has been a really difficult month for us and as you probably know I have taken some time off to support family. In the space of 7 days the shape of our family changed in ways we would never have wished for and one very important photography related issue came up again that I wanted to share with everyone.
In the past couple of weeks and also throughout the past 2 years where, sadly we have lost other dear family members, one thing has become so clear to me, the comfort and happiness that photographs can bring. In these difficult times the first thing every family member has done is reached for their shoe boxes, albums and memories in photo form. Endless hours have been spent pouring over the years gone by, all recorded there in images. We have laughed, cried and shared the memories, it has been part of the healing process.
My big concern is that in these days of the digital age where we are taking more and more photos than ever (a good thing!), sharing more photos than ever, that actually in the long term, in 20 or 30 years all those images will be lost. You see, all it takes is for a disc to corrupt, a hard drive to fail and all digital files are lost, ok so they are extreme cases but it happens to so many people I know. Think about this… those of you with a smart phone full of images of your children and family… what happens if tomorrow you drop it down the loo or have your handbag stolen? Yes you have lost the phone which is replacable but you have also lost those images and memories forever. With every new phone, new laptop etc images are left behind and forgotten.
It is not just at times of loss that photographs and memories are important. One of my most treasured possessions is an album of “Life so Far” which my Mum created for me at my 18th birthday, a collection of funny (and cute!) snaps from my childhood, see below for some embarrassing examples!
My little plea to you all is to keep on making those memories and recording them but please, please go get them printed. It is no secret that I am not a fan of the online and highstreet labs for getting professional pictures printed, but they are 100% fine for getting those memories down on paper and saving them for your future. You could get 100s of images printed for about a tenner and then they are there, ready to be giggled at and shared in the future…. go on… do it!! Do it now!!
Yes you should also back the images up too, store them in a cloud or wherever you can, of course, but again, in 20 years will Flickr and Facebook still be there guarding your treasures? Will you remember the password? Will the writable discs you use be read by the technology of the future even if they haven’t degraded?
(One other little handy tip- write the year and names of anyone in the photos on the back too!)
Many thanks to all who have sent kind words to us and been so understanding about my time off, I am slowly catching up now.
Please do feel free to leave your own stories in the comments box.
Marjorie, Stanley, Valerie, Sheila, Leslie and Basil we thank you for the memories and we miss you all lots xxx
And as promised some slightly embarrassing pictures of me ca. 1977-1981!