Organise

Ask LH: How Can I Get My Holiday Photos Under Control?

Hey Lifehacker, Got any tips for managing an excess of holiday photos? Take me, for example: on my trip to Melbourne and Sydney last March, I took around 2500 photos; I was there for three weeks. Even a short 3-day vacation took up more than 200 shots. The big problem I’m facing is which one to print. Thanks, Photo Profligate

Dear PP,

Your question raises two immediate issues:

Why do you want to print them in the first place? We are, realistically, a long way from the era where a printed photo album was the best (and ony) way to experience photos or share them with friends. If you want to show them off to others, you can do so from your phone or laptop screen. If you want photos on permanent display, a digital photo frame is a good solution. While the typical digital photo frame shows rotating images, you can easily set it to display just a single image, and alter it on a much less regular basis.

That said, there’s obviously still a place for getting a large version of a cherished print — one where you’re impressed with your own skills or which brings back fond memories of a great trip. But honestly, those shots will jump out at you if you take the time to go through your photos. And that brings me to my second point:

Photo management on holidays makes sense. In my experience, by far the best way to stay on top of your holiday photo workload is to set aside time each day to go through the shots you’ve taken, and ditch the ones that aren’t relevant/in focus. With digital cameras, it’s easy to take “one more shot to be sure”, but we often fail to do the follow-up work. When you get home from a holiday and face an SD card filled with thousands of images, it’s all too easy to put it in the too-hard basket. It’s much easier to

This was exactly what I did on a month-long holiday with friends last year: set aside a little time every day to go through the photos we’d taken, ditch the duds, edit the ones with potential and end up with a good record of the day’s activities. That also gave us the opportunity to share the photos with friends. That still only took half an hour a day at best, and it’s something you could easily do before retiring for the night or over breakfast the next morning. Even if you don’t take a PC, you can get rid of most questionable shots on the camera itself.

Readers, have other strategies for dealing with your holiday photo glut? Tell us in the comments. For more holiday photo advice, check our thoughts on how friends should share photos after a trip.

Cheers
Lifehacker

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