Get Those Photos Off Of Your Phone and Into Your Hands

Get Those Photos Off Of Your Phone and Into Your Hands

Serving as my family’s historian is one of my greatest honors. As a child, I remember sitting at my grandparents’ house spending hours flipping through the many photo albums my grandmother curated for her family, and ultimately albums of her children’s families as well.

Perhaps even more important than the photos themselves, the albums helped foster conversations between my grandmother and me about stories from the past and learning about things I wouldn’t have known otherwise.

I am passionate about preserving our family memories, both big and small, to pass on to my children. I want them to have tangible memories to know their story, see how we spent our days together in those early years, remember our traditions, and strengthen the bond between my children as siblings from the history they share. 

In this day of digital everything and cameras on us every day, we have the ability to take as many photos as we want and aren’t limited to the 27 snaps we had on a disposal camera back in the day (did I just date myself?). This allows us to capture every moment, but if you are like me, and that number is amplified when your babies were born, the number of photos on your phone can be overwhelming. Technology is wonderful as it allows us to have our entire photo collection with us at all times, but nothing beats having your pictures printed in a physical book for your family.

I’m here today to share some tips on keeping up with those photos on your phone and getting them off of your phone and into your hands.

Organize the photos on your phone and maintain them. Start today!

If you have thousands of photos on your phone and haven’t been keeping up with them, don’t worry. My advice is to start now with a manageable amount of your current photos. You can always go back through old photos as time allows, but we don’t want that backlog to grow. Don’t let the overwhelm get to you and impede your progress.

Cull and edit your photos often

Delete duplicate or blurry photos. Use your phone’s auto-edit function to quickly improve your photo’s exposure and color. You may find that you can spare 5-10 minutes at night cleaning up your photos from the day while you unwind on the couch. Or set a weekly reminder to catch up. The point is to keep up with your photos so that they can be done in manageable chunks of time without dread.

Create photo albums on your phone

I like to create a “favorites” album of photos that I know I want to print for frames or baby books. I also create albums for trips or special occasions so that it is easier to upload them to printing sites when I am ready to make a book.

Print your photos

My girls absolutely love to look at our photo albums, but they are particularly drawn to the day-to-day photos that we print into books. Of course, our vacations and special occasions are fun to revisit, but they really connect with looking back on our simpler memories.

  • Chatbooks is my favorite service for printing these books. I love their “month-book” subscription series where you can select 30 photos per month to print into a book. Not only are they affordable, but they make it very easy by sending you reminders, narrowing down the photos for you for that month to choose from, and can even pick your best photos for you. It is all done through your phone and takes 5-10 minutes to create your book.
  • For printing special occasions or vacation books that are good quality and affordable, Shutterfly, Mixbook, and Snapfish are great options. For higher-quality prints and books, I recommend Artifact Uprising and Mpix. Some photographers I know say that Mpix quality is the closest to a professional photography printing service.

Your family will thank you someday for curating these precious memories for them. I’d love to hear how your photo books turn out!

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Tara Sierra
Tara was raised in Atlanta and graduated from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. She is taking a break from the corporate world to focus on raising her children, along with caring for her aging parents and volunteering. She enjoys sharing ideas on wellness, sustainability, staying engaged during a career break, and preserving family memories. Tara and her husband spent years traveling the world before kids, and plan to continue the tradition with them. When she squeezes in some free time, you might find her practicing yoga, writing, reading, or curating family photo books.