In a day and age when we have digital cameras, cell phones, and internet access, do we need hard copies of photos?
As someone who grew up before the digital revolution, I can say that, YES, we do need hard copies of photos. Digital photography is a wonderful thing. I remember waaaaaaayyyyy back, when you would take 12 to 36 pictures with your film camera, send the film out to be developed, wait a few weeks, and then hope that some, if not most of the pictures came out good enough to show to others. So I was in awe when digital cameras came out and I could take hundreds of pictures, knowing right away if they came out right, being able to take more until I got the shot, and getting rid of the ones I didn’t want. Technology is good.
I have fond memories of watching my mom put pictures in photo albums (the precursor to scrap-booking). I have even more fond memories of pouring through photo albums at the kitchen table and sharing those memories with loved ones. Now I am making memories with my kids as I do the modern version of scrap-booking: Photo books.
I love that with the digital age, I can share photos with family that live far away in an instant, but I also enjoy watching my children pull out the photo books and sharing the stories behind the pictures.
I am not a fan of boxes and boxes of photos, old photo books where the sticky stuff has gotten so old that the photos fall out of the book whenever you open them, or stacks up to the ceiling of large, bulky photo albums. There is only so much space available in my house and I would like to be somewhat neat and organized.
I have boxes of photos and lots of old bulky photo albums, but a few years ago I discovered photo books that I can put together online. They have sturdy, hard covers and are less than a quarter the thickness of a my older photo albums. Now I put all of my “keeper” photos into photo books and I am slowly working my way backwards to replace those older photo albums. I say slowly, because photo books are not necessarily the cheapest, in fact, they can get pretty expensive if you are not careful, but I have found a few ways to make my photo books for less.
This is one of my favorite photo book companies. Subscribe to their emails. At least twice a year, Shutterfly offers coupon codes for a free photo book – you just have to pay shipping. That means I can get a photo book for under ten dollars. Now if that doesn’t seem inexpensive, think about having pictures processed, buying a photo album to put them in, and then spending time organizing those photos in that album. I can spend that same amount of time online to, not only put the photos in a book, but add all kinds of color and embellishments to make each album unique.
Clark Color (www.clarkcolor.com)
This is my other favorite photo book company. Subscribe to their emails. Several times a year, Clark offers coupon codes for a buy one, get two photo books free. That works out to getting a photo book for just over ten dollars each. Again, I have creative license, which I love.
Why do these photo books appeal to me?
For the organizer in me, I love having all of my photo books labeled (both inside and on the spine) and having all of them be the same size.
For the artist in me, I love having the ability to have my own personal style on each page.
For the lazy part of me, I love having the ability to pick a free template and just pick the photos I want to add and let the software place them as well as use preset colors and trimmings.
For the perfectionist in me, I love having the ability to get all of my pictures ‘just so’ before ordering.
For the impatience in me, I love having the ability to do everything online without dragging out boxes of photos and scrapbook supplies – design, click and order.