Photography Lesson #8 Keeping Your Photos Safe

Photos are some of my most prized possessions, and after knowing friends who have lost precious photos from computers and hard drive crashes or fires in their homes I am SO paranoid about keeping my photos safe! I learned that a fail safe is to have three places to store your photos. A main hard drive, a back up hard drive and a location outside of your home just in case of something like a flood or fire (either on an online/cloud service or a hard drive stored in a safe deposit box or office or friends house)

My husband and I only use WD (Western Digital) Harddrives and G drives and we use to store both our personal and professional projects. I also make an effort to print a yearly album so I can actually appreciate the family photos I take.


  •– online photo storage – unlimited storage, you can store videos as well. You can share photo albums, password protect your photos, and hide albums as well **This is what I use and I LOVE it – minus not being able to store RAW photos. (Having a subscription to smugmug also gives you discount codes for other companies like blurb, peak design, and mix book.) Click here for a 14 day free trial. Here is a link to my page so you can see how I have organized my professional photos (my personal photos are hidden and password protected.)
  • Amazon prime– unlimited photo storage you can order photo albums – one photo per page and easy to use. You also still have access to photos if you cancel your prime membership.
  • Google photos**most recommended by others– backs up automatically, you don’t have to have a google phone, also easy to share photos with others
  • you can upload a small number of important photos for free
  • Backblaze (aka B2 cloud storage) automatic photo saving system- mirrors your storage system. (pricing depends on how much you are storing)
  • Forever– albums and storage, auto sync from your phone and facebook. (starting at $19 a month, or free for only 2 gigs of storage)
  • – another professional online storage company (I believe you can upload RAW photos) starts at $5 a month
  • Dropbox – online photo/video storage (you can store and share both Jpeg and RAW photos)

Printing photos for wall art or photo albums

  • is my favorite non-professional company for professional quality *it’s a sister company to Millers which is a great professional lab.
  • Costco is pretty great too
  • Walgreens is decent in a pinch
  • If you can avoid it, try not to use: Walmart, or Shutterfly their print quality and color is not great.
  • For professional photographers – I love White House Custom Color (WHCC) and CGpro/Prints for canvases

Photo Album Companies:

***Side note – I surveyed a BUNCH of people to see what their favorite album companies were, and this is what I learned:

BLURB *very recommended/most popular among people I talked to


  • Great quality
  • coupon codes = affordable
  • lots of size and price options
  • You can print your blog
  • Someone recommended Proline Pearl paper because page max is 440
  • Great binding and paper quality


  • Photo quality not as good as the more expensive albums


CHATBOOKS *the least amount of effort needed


  • links to your Instagram or just an app on your phone
  • you don’t need to have Instagram to use
  • You can add additional photos from your camera roll (you don’t have to post all of them on Instagram)
  • You can edit the photo descriptions
  • You can use hashtags to create a book: ex- some people use a hashtag (#) for each child or each vacation and then collect the photos from just that hashtag.
  • Least maintenance and least time to create
  • *someone said they give each kid a hashtag for the year and they make individual books at the end of the year for their stockings – she said it takes just a few seconds and its ordered


  • significantly less than stellar print quality when compared to other companies 


   Pros – more options and creativity

   Cons -on the pricier side


   Pros- Great photo quality

   Cons- On the pricier side

PROJECT LIFE *Also very recommended but pricey


  • really nice quality
  • simple to use
  • great customer service
  • Free app you can use
  • You can print the pages you design separately and store them in binders
  • Some said it was the “luxury vehicle” of the photobook world


  • $$$




  • very affordable during sales (UP TO 50% OFF)
  • variety of album designs and other photo items
  • easy to use
  • they can design the album for you
  • -unlimited photo storage


  • max 1000 photos per album – big downside when I’m making yearly albums
  • Photo quality could be better (it’s not awful, but the pro-photographer in me isn’t a fan)

Journaling Apps:

  • Qeepsake – easy to use, they text and ask questions about your life/kids and you text back and add photos 

Video journaling

  • 1second video – app on your phone, you chose 1-3 seconds a day from video you take and it will mash it together. Music is provided for your videos.

Print your blog

  • – wait for 30% off coupon
  • Blurb has easy options as well

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