How to Plan Your Picture Taking and Preserve Your Photos

Boy, man, woman, girl holding hands
A little pre-planning can capture prized moments; photo by Photo by Emma Bauso from Pexels

Now it’s time to organize the pictures you took on Mother’s Day, because more photo opportunities are coming your way. Memorial Day weekend will have fewer restrictions this year than it did in 2020 so get ready. Here’s how you can visualize the entire process:

  • Planning
  • Taking pictures
  • Organizing your photos
  • Storing the photos

Let’s look at each step and see how you can get the most from your photos and—safeguard your memories.


Planning Your Photos

If you’re taking pictures on family trips or at events like weddings or graduations, you’re not going to spend lots of hours pre-planning your photos. But a little pre-planning helps so you don’t feel frantic that you’re missing out on life’s greatest moments.

If you have kids in tow, then is there a combination of shots that you simply must take? Is there anything that’s special about this trip or vacation spot?

Maybe you’re going back to a particular place with your church or some other group that you couldn’t visit in 2020 due to Covid-19 restrictions, so plan a few group shots.


Taking Pictures

Lighting is the secret ingredient in all photos. Make sure the subject, whether a person or landmark, is well lit. Flash can fill in the photo and eliminate annoying shadows.

Take a few practice shots inside your house or outside in the yard to see how you get the best results. And then delete those practice shots.


Organizing Your Photos

Both organizing your photos and storing them is the reason my company is now named Safeguard Your Memories. If you’ve done even some simple planning of your photos ahead of time then you have a good idea of what you can delete right away.

You want to keep the pictures that signify traits like personal growth, family togetherness, overcoming challenges, milestones or a sense of well-being.

Pictures with notes on a cork board
Photo coaches are needed to help clients adjust from prints to digital organizing: Photo by Soragrit Wongsa on Unsplash

This is where you think like a journalist and ask:

  • What is the subject matter?
  • Who is in the picture? And who is the photo about?
  • Why is this important?
  • Where were the photos taken?
  • When were the shots taken?

The last question, when, doesn’t just have to be a month, day or year. Maybe the “when was this taken?” was after a major surgery and the photo shows how well a loved one, friend or colleague has recovered.

Maybe it’s a few days after exams or a family gathering before a child leaves home to go to college or career.

This also goes back to the benefits of pre-planning and thinking through what you need. You may capture a few significant shots that can be passed along through the generations. Those timeless photos are prize shots.

We know this is casual picture taking and not professional photography. You’re at a family event or with a gathering of friends. You’re not on assignment with National Geographic looking for that one award-winning image that will grace the cover or be the lead in an article.

So why bother thinking through your shots?


A Word about Clutter

You and I know how easy it is to snap away with our iPhones or Androids and pile up the pics. We might take from dozens to hundreds of shots within a brief vacation or at a setting like a sports event. But then you’re stuck with all these photos and you don’t know what to do with them.

Clutter can gnaw away at our well-being and peace of mind without us realizing it. The digital age is great for sharing text and images but it’s also resulted in more clutter than ever. We fight it on our phones, in our email inboxes, and around our houses with print photos, VHS tapes, mini-DVDs and slide shows.

Even a small amount of pre-planning can guide you in what photos or videos to keep and which ones to delete.


Permanent Digital Storage

Storing your photos for a lifetime is a guaranteed way to truly safeguard your memories. It’s like having photo insurance so that you don’t have to worry about where your photos are. The pictures we take throughout our lives are deeply personal and yet we can lose that part of ourselves through fire, floods or even a loved one who may be quite ill—and we’re wondering if we took enough photos of them.

Using available technology, I can show you an easy-to-use organizing system and hassle-free conversion into a storage system that’s guaranteed to last for a lifetime, plus 100 years. I’ve been a photo coach for 26 years and I’ve always used the best available technology to keep your images as safe as possible.

Not too long ago, that meant scanning by hand, but now there are systems and tools that work even better.

Smiling woman, chin on hand
Melody Whitehead, Safeguard Your Memories



Contact me if you’re needing help converting print photos and older media into digital media—and if you’re wondering how you’re going to keep everything safe for years to come.


Consider Photo Coaching as a Business

There’s a need for photo coaches so if you’re bitten by the entrepreneurial bug and you enjoy helping others, then read this post Why Photo Coaching is an In-Demand Business You can Do.


Extra! Extra!

Get great tips on lighting with this write-up from The Lens Lounge.

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At Safeguard Your Memories, we go beyond mere photo storage. We empower you through personalized photo coaching, guiding you through the process of photo digitization, organization, and creative printing solutions.

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