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Organizing your photos (or any type of files)

December 20, 2011

Too often, we tend to save our files to the My Documents or My Pictures folder on the computer which can cause great disorganization as time goes by.

With the new year coming up, some of you may be making some resolutions to get organized.  What often starts out great the first couple of weeks turns into a forgotten promise by end of January.  I’ve been guilty of this too often myself.  Here are some relatively simple tips to get things organized, especially if you do photography:

For photographers:

Have a separate folder by year in the My Picture folder.  Much easier!  When putting photos in this folder, create separate folders named by date, i.e. 03-17-2012 for your St. Patrick’s day photos.  Using this numbering method will keep them in consecutive order.  You can also put a topic after the date, i.e. naming it 03-17-2012 Patrick which makes it easier to find months or years later when you need the photo.

If you need to archive or back up to an external drive or CD, you can burn that folder(s) to the CD ROM.  Make sure you label the disk!

For documents:

Again, use the same naming system in the My Documents folder.  You can also break them into very general topics such as finance, specific topics (or clients if you’re self-employed).   This may require a bit of thinking or planning in the beginning.

For example, I teach many computer topics.  I have a folder named Teach.  In it there are the many topics that I work with such as Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Photoshop, Internet that all have separate folders.  This makes it very easy to find the hand out that I need for the class coming up the following week.  As I work with files for the students, there’s a subfolder in each topic named Student Disk.

 

On a final note, I have made it a point NOT to save files into My Documents or My Pictures anymore.  It’s way too difficult to find that photo in the future.  However, as a catch-all, I do have a folder named Miscellaneous which has proven to be more than a bit useful.

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