This post is a morality tale thinly disguised as a helpful how-to article on creating printed and bound albums that document all the fun you had this summer. I learned the hard way.
Picture this: after a magical summer spent abroad with my family, with no fewer than 2,000 photographs downloaded to my computer in the process, I no sooner arrived home than my entire iPhoto library went poof.
Aside from the upwards of 60,000 photos that have resided on my computer for the past decade – documenting little things like, you know, weddings, babies, vacations and reunions – you might say I was slightly panicked when the photographs from our entire crazy summer adventure (plus the past fifteen years of my life) were suddenly gone.
When I went to the Apple Store, a super helpful guy wearing a badge that advertised his genius status attempted to explain what had happened in what I can only assume is the verbal equivalent of binary code. My one take-away from his nerd-iloquy was that I had a few shortcomings regarding my digital storage habits.
So you can imagine my relief when I discovered that the real genius lives in my home: my personal IT guy, a.k.a. my husband. He’d been backing up all my photos all along.
Still, the process of rebuilding my database and dealing with all the other fallout related to my full-to-bursting computer issues made me really re-think how (here comes the morality tale part) one really shouldn’t take digital photos for granted. You know: that they’ll always be there, because apparently when they live on your computer they’re just a series of zeros and ones.
So, now that my computer is (knock-on-wood) healthy-ish again, I’m hell-bent on getting those photos into printed albums. Though I’ve done some effective-for-now fixes, my computer’s memory isn’t getting any bigger. God knows my memory isn’t getting any better. And my family memories are just too precious.
Here’s the helpful how-to part:
Start by making an album that captures your most recent adventure. It’ll be the easiest one to create because the memories are still crystal-clear. You’ll be able to pull together all your favorite photos into a visual narrative really quickly. Simply choose a summer-themed template (or one that complements your photos well), and upload your pictures. You can then either hit Auto-Mix to have them instantly populate the layouts, or you can manually drag and drop your pictures right where you want them. One piece of great news about Mixbook is that once your photos live in an album, they’re safe. Even if something happened to the photos on your computer, you can access them in your project stored with Mixbook. It’s like Poof Protection! But by all means: print those albums. You want to have a palpable record of the big stuff and the little stuff – one that won’t go poof.
Once you’ve made that first album that illustrates your recent memories, start going back in time a bit. Make a list of your top-five must-have albums, then just start chipping away. Create a digital folder for each album you plan to create and add photos as you scroll through your library. The trick is going about it methodically – say by year, by event, or by holiday – then keeping at it until you have enough photos gathered to create an album. Then, print, print, print! You’ll love the tactile comfort of having your photos physically in your midst rather than buried in some secret language that you need the Rosetta Stone or a maybe even a certified Geek to make sense of. Making your Mixbooks is like taking out insurance against memories going poof. The only poof in your life will be the almost magical appearance of your custom Mixbooks on your doorstep.