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Tips for Choosing the best Pictures to Print

Happy Sunday, everyone!

I am so thrilled that I’ve finally finished my pile of pictures that needed to be scrapped! Gah, it’s such a good feeling! Why? Oh, I was getting tired of the ones I had to work through. I am looking forward to working with some fresh (meaning new) pictures.

I’m starting 2018 with the next batch of pictures I’ll print. I’m getting a little nervous at the thought of being so close to present day- I hope I never catch up! But, if I do, I’ll switch gears and travel down memory lane- going right back to where our story began, way back in 2006/2007. Yep, that was awhile ago.

I like to print my pictures in 4-6 month batches, and while I still somewhat struggle with which pictures to print, there are a couple rules I keep in mind when I save them to my flash drive.

But first, where do I print my pictures? Honestly, I go to Walmart, because it’s cheap, quick (I love one hour photo!!) and it’s just up the street. Walmart is what I use because it’s super efficient. I hate waiting. If I didn’t mind waiting, and if I were to switch, I would print through Persnickety Prints. They’re developed and printed the old fashioned way, y’all!! There’s a variety of print options (hello 12×12 prints!!), at decent prices (photo prints are 0.19 each), coupons and discount codes, and more! Service is quick and efficient. All wonderful reasons to check them out.

So, what rules do I keep in mind before saving the pictures I want to print to my flash drive? My pictures are all saved (regularly- every month or so) to my computer from my cell phone. As I’m looking through them, I first look for my favourite pictures. We all know which ones those are. They’re the ones that make us go “I remember that”- either for that sweet or goofy facial expression, memorable sleeping position, or situation that just sticks out in our minds for no particular reason.

The next thing I keep in mind is choosing pictures that evoke a particular emotion or feeling. In the last batch of pictures I printed, I included my husbands’ bout with pericarditis and the medication he was (finally) prescribed that’s improved his quality of life and actually works. I’m a believer in documenting all the memories– happy, sad and tough- nothing is off limits- so when I came across these pictures, there was no question they’d be included. Looking back, I recall feeling the fear and sadness during that difficult time, but now, I can look at them with gratitude, too. Those are all the feelings those pictures evoke.

Lastly, which pictures turned out the best? Often, I’ll find 5 or 6 or even more of the same type of picture. I know I don’t need them all, especially if 3 of them are unintelligible. My pictures aren’t perfect- most of them are basically point and shoot, often making them dark and grainy (if they’re indoors), and overall just poor. (Outdoor pictures are alright. Sunny days definitely helps, right? You’d probably agree). So, I ask myself which of the multiples I’ve taken best tells the story I want to share. I try to be as picky as possible. Sometimes that means only two pictures make the cut; other times none of them do.

There’s the odd time a set of pictures will ”make the cut”, but by the time I’m ready to scrapbook them, I no longer feel the same emotional connection to all those pictures that I did originally. What I mean is an idea forms for a possible theme for a certain set of pictures (like the pictures I saved of all the red noses our elf Snowflake added to the picture frames all over the living room one year). At the time, I thought it’d make such an awesome layout. When I was ready to tackle it, I realized just one picture would’ve been sufficient- not seven.

While I try to subscribe to the three rules I mentioned above, there’s times my heart gets the best of me. Take your heart out of the equation. It’ll get you into trouble! The paragraph above proves that. Here’s another example:

I kept looking at all these pictures I had left over, and kept asking myself do these pictures really deserve their own layouts? Similar pictures were used in other layouts. I shouldn’t have printed them. They were redundant. They weren’t needed. Since similar pictures were already shared in other layouts, what was I going to do with them? Throwing them out is wasted money. That’s not an option.

What seemed like a great idea when I sat down to print my pictures became a not so good idea when crafty time rolled around. Oops. Don’t let your oh, I’ve changed my mind, now become an uh oh.

Try to avoid this by being as picky as you can. It’s hard, but possible. Use your head more than your heart. It might be counter- intuitive, but I’m going to go out on a limb and tell you to have no preconceived ideas of what you want to do with certain sets of pictures before you print them. Your mind will change after printing. Don’t print all seven scout elf photos; pick your favourite or the one that best tells the story, and move on. You can fill in the blanks with your journaling. If you find later on that 1 isn’t enough, go back and print more. It’s better to have not enough than too much. This is probably like the only time you’ll ever hear that anywhere! Besides wearing make up. And hair product. Less is always more!!

Thanks for joining me today, and I hope you’ll find something useful in what I’ve shared today. What rules do you adhere to in your picture printing? Share them with me below! We could all use more tips and tools in our bag of tricks!

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