Before I start this post I just want to ensure clients that I have backups of backups including cloud backups for safety! The images I am about to talk about are from a number of years ago and mainly refer to private family photographs which are totally precious to me.
The old pc containing my old images died last year and it's only been recently that I have found time to look at this properly. The images were taken over a number of years of family holidays and my daughters growing up. Luckily my career in London was in IT support so with my albeit rusty knowledge I was able to attach my hard disk into a borrowed pc and transfer my images to safety. Without going into boring detail, it did take a lot of considerable time to do this and it wouldn't have been something I could have done myself without my experience. So, for those of you out there with all your digital images stored in one place, what would you do if that computer failed? I think I'd still be crying now if I had lost these precious images as I myself am very guilty of never printing my personal work!
This also leads into another aspect. Vint Cerf, described as one of the fathers of the Internet, discussed in an article last year how he worries data and images we save on computer will be lost as hardware/software becomes obsolete and fears future generations will have little or no record of the 21st Century as we enter what he describes as a "digital Dark Age". As an example who uses a floppy disk now? How many years is it before the USB pen is obsolete? Are you going to keep backing up the images to a new device? When my first child was born we purchased a camcorder, as the world is now digital the first years of my children’s lives are stored on little cassettes. I keep meaning to see if I can get them transferred but it’s on a long list of things to do….. Here's a link to the full story: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-31450389
At the moment the growing trend is for couples to look at purchasing a USB/Gallery download only option to print/layout their own albums. However, how many of us are guilty of never printing our images? Even couples who plan to make their own album, if it’s not something you’re used to doing it can take considerable amount of time. As a photographer you look at the composition and story aspect so the album flows naturally. The quality of wedding albums are built to last and I’m a strong believer in you get what you pay for. Therefore, a photobook off the internet just isn’t going to match the quality of a professional laboratory or album supplier. You spend so much on your wedding day why scrimp on the one thing you have left after the cake is eaten, the flowers have died and the dress is sold. A professional album will last a life time and be handed down through generations.
I can remember sitting looking at my parents wedding album, flicking through the pages and wondering what my own wedding would be like. Viewing a wedding day on a computer does not provide the wow factor and there’s something special about an old album, it’s a piece of your family history.
So when you are planning your day remember, a wedding album is your first heirloom and even if you don't go with a professional album make that effort to print.
** For any of my clients interested in online storage of their photographs please get in touch. A supplier of my gallery images currently offers 10 years of backup at a very reasonable cost. **