How to Save Your Wedding Photos Long Term
One of the questions I get asked all the time is: "how do I save my wedding photos long term?" So, today I'm answering that question in a blog post!
I never give my clients USBs, DVDs, or CDs because it's a matter of when, not if, they will fail. They’ll break, get lost in a move, get too hot, get too cold-- all the things that could happen will, and you won't have any photos if you rely on these devices.
That's why I recommend using cloud storage. Cloud storage is great because it doesn't rely on a laptop, a general hard drive, a USB drive or an SD card. You can store your photos somewhere online and leave them there for a rainy day. Know that things happen and the machines you use today will not always be in your life in five years, but you'll always want your wedding photos in your life. There are tons of options, including:
- Google Drive
- Amazon Cloud Drive Storage
I suggest making two copies: one to work from on your computer or hard drive, and another you store in the cloud and not touch. That way, ten years down the road when you've moved a couple times and changed computers, everything will still be there waiting for you when you need it.
Another option is using a site like Shutterfly or Flickr if you're more into regularly printing and sending photos to grandma. This shouldn't be your first line of defense, but it could be your second or third place to store the photos that are important to you.
But, PSA, be careful with the smaller companies that may not have the longevity of bigger ones! I love tech podcasts and was listening to one where they told a story about a smaller online photo printing company that went bankrupt and sold all of what was left over. People had a few months to download their photos-- think about how easy it would be to miss emails about this with all the emails you get every day-- and luckily Smugmug took over most (but not all) of the photos.
Personally, my goal is to keep everything forever. I can't 100% guarantee that if the world comes crashing down I'll still have your wedding photos, but I do everything in my power to keep a copy of everything.
It's super important to store your wedding photos well and to do it as soon as possible.
Don’t put it off, because if something happens you'll be really sad and you'll email me and ask if I have photos (and I'll say yes because I keep everything forever). But the point is, no need to be sad! Just make two copies, and have one copy safely stored in the cloud that you just put there and forget about. Easy!