January 16, 2019

The Cobbler Series | Backing Up Your Photos

Hi.  Have you spent 2019 Marie-Kondo’ing your entire house?  Emptying closets and drawers, sectioning out what brings you joy, and then origami folding those joy-sparking things to be lovingly folded and placed in your home?

Me too.  It’s addicting, isn’t it?  You start with piles of stuff – so cluttered you’re not even sure what’s there.  You visit with every item, keeping only the ones that bring you joy and gratefully releasing those that don’t.  Then, you put the winners back.  Neatly.  So that each one can be seen and enjoyed on a daily basis.

If you know me at all, you can see where I’m going with this.  (I never miss an opportunity to encourage you to print and enjoy your photos!)  Yes, I’m here today to remind you to Marie Kondo your photos, too.

Over the last couple of years, I’ve been pubslishing my Cobbler Series here on the ol’ LYYP blog about organizing and printing your photos and about designing and printing photo books. Wouldn’t RIGHT NOW be a good time to throw all those photos on the proverbial bed, fold them into neat piles and lovingly choose the ones you want for your walls and photo books?  I don’t have a book or a Netflix series to help inspire you to do this, but I do have these super-awesome Cobblier Series installments, which are, I’d argue, a great place to start:

Organizing Your Photos

Printing Your iPhone Photos

Making Books

Designing Photo Books

And what I’ve popped in here to chat with you about is the much less glamorous issue of backing up those photos so that you don’t lose them all in the blink of an eye.  (See?  Un-glamorous, but very important!)

There are many, many, MANY ways you can back up the photos on your phone and computer (Amazon Photos?  Google Photos?  iCloud? Flickr?  Pick your poison).  I’m not going to attempt to share all of them here, and I’m not going to try to convince you that my way is the best way either.  By sharing here, I hope to impress upon you that you need at least ONE WAY to make sure your photos are backed up.  Here goes.

My backup system is two pronged.  The first thing I do is set up Time Machine on my Mac to automatically back up to an external hard drive connected to my computer.  If something goes wrong with my main hard drive, I should be able to easily find the most recent backup and restore everything to the way it was before trouble arrived.  This would be great if ‘trouble’ came in the form of a hard drive crash, for example.  I’d be out of luck, though, if my house burned down or was robbed and both the computer’s hard drive and the external hard drive were lost.

For this reason, I also use Crashplan to maintain automatic backups to the cloud.  If my whole house was lost, I should be able to download my precious digital possessions to a new computer.

There are two things that made me personally choose these two approaches over they myriad of others available.  The first is that they’re automatic.  As long as I occasionally check that everything’s going as it should, I shouldn’t need to worry about when the last time was that I made time to back up my photos – it’s already done.  The second is that by backing up my entire hard drive, I’m maintaining the organization system that I talk about in THIS post.  With the volume of photos I deal with, that’s a huge comfort to me.  If your volume is not quite as high (and let’s face it, it probably isn’t), you might find that the automatic organization systems that are provided within services like Amazon Photos will serve you well.

And that’s all I have to say about the matter!  The two big takeaways I hope you’re getting here:

Marie Kondo isn’t just for clothing and kitchen appliances!; and


Thanks for looking,


PS Maybe your New Year’s resolutions have less to do with organizing the photos in your life and more to do with having MORE photos in your life?  Well, if that’s the case, I should tell you that there’s still plenty of room in my February 1 and 8 sections of the LYYP Freeze Ray Basics Workshops!  Drop me a line if you’re interested …