Brilliant Bloggers Share How to Organize Those Bulging Photos Folders

Do you need help with file organization? Marsha with Always Write has gathered information from several blogger’s point of view and put it together to help others organize their photos.

Marsha Ingrao - Always Write

Thanks to Contributors


From the bottom of my heart I want to thank those of you who contributed to this post.

Why Organize Your Photos?

Terri Webster Schrandt has a photographic memory and can remember when and where she took a picture. Most of us are not like that. I can remember a picture that would be perfect for a post but I can’t find it. I get a lot of requests from friends for pictures for projects or funerals, if I’ve been close to someone. I’m always shocked at how few pictures I can find and how long it takes me. Like Terri, I can remember the picture, but have no idea of time or where I took it.

Our Eyes Open, Bird Weekly Host
Photo by Lisa Coleman

Hugh Roberts organizes photos for his blog so that…

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36 Comments on “Brilliant Bloggers Share How to Organize Those Bulging Photos Folders

  1. I start a new folder every year and inside it are the places by name and date. At the end of the year, I move that year over to the external hard drive and only the latest most current year is on my C drive.
    I have a 6TB external hard drive and a cloud service for backup. Knock on wood it’s been a good system for me.

    Culling. The first pass is easy. I get rid of blurry and duplicates straight away right after uploading. The second one not so much. I am never sure I won’t want an image in the future so I keep them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You have struck me to the heart. I organize by month and year for MOST things, but by subject or location for other subject. Since birds are a constant, I don’t organize them separately but fortunately, I know by time of year when I’m going to find what kind of pictures. I deleted pictures that are too fuzzy, blurry, way off center or to crooked to correct before I even start renaming a new batch and then often, after I get a closer look, delete more. Especially where I’ve taken a bunch of very similar pictures, I will delete from a dozen of them to a handful — and this is as much to keep my hard drive from overflowing as any other reason, I have 2 physical back ups — a 3 TB from (I forget the company) in Japan, and a 5 TB drive from Microsoft (probably made in China, but it works).

    I used to keep more, but that because overwhelming too. I store most things on my 1 TB standard hard drive and my Win 10 OS also has a second SSHD where I store application and the OS. I don’t store photos on my Mac because I haven’t found a reasonable processing product for it — yet. If I survive the year, I’m probably going to give in and subscript to Photoshop (Adobe) because no matter how you cut it, it’s still the best product on the market even though it’s klutzy to use and produces rather bigger (reduced in size) photos than other system.

    I have Corel — several recent and unused) versions of it, but the results from PS are always just a better, I also made the decision to NOT shoot RAW as a standard practice because the pix are HUGE. When I do shoot raw, I process then dump the RAW files, keep just the original jpgs. I rarely print pictures anymore. There is nowhere to put them and I can’t afford the price of framing. I also recycle my cards after they have been saved on my computer and external drives.

    That being said, I still have a hard, hard time finding specific photographs. You have about 100,000 more of them than I do, but my 100,000 +/- are quite sufficient. I’m wary of Clouds. To many times I have been whacked by cloud storage deciding to disapear leaving me scrambling to find homes of thousands of photos. Also, I was hit in the late 1990s by the “I Love You” virus — before I got serious about backing up . I lost ALL MY PHOTOGRAPH from the late1990s. For a while, I went back to film, but that became ridiculous fast.

    I don’t use cloud storage so all my photos live at home. Should my house burn to the ground, I will have other issues than losing photos.

    Every once in a while, I create a new folder and name it after a specific location or other thing I think I’ll remember (but sometimes DON’T remember!). I know the month/date sorting with special folders for other stuff (Dog Shows, Old Family, Garry at Work, Bonnie, Duke, Scotties, Cooperstown, Maine, Vermont, Serenity-Marina-Boat, River Bend, Arizona, PBGVs, etc.) is inadequate, but I quiver in fear when I look at the mess and try to imagine rearranging it. I have quite a lot of storage ON my big PC and keep at least the most recent two years some other frequently used material on it as well as backed up. Everything else is on my external drives.

    It’s STILL hard to specific shots and I have lost some original and have no idea HOW I lost them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We all have so much in common, don’t we? I have CorelDraw which comes with Corel Photo Paint but I only use it to vectorize raster images. PS is the best and. yes it makes the photoshop file large, but you can export to web and it takes your 24meg file down to 100+K without losing the quality. I save a PS file, the exported jpg and keep my original intact in case I want to play with it for something else. That is how I do mine for WP. You have to play with the settings once you are in that window, but once they are set, it is just a matter of changing the pixel size each time. If you decide to do that and need help, let me know. 🙂


      • We’ll have to talk about my getting at least a bit more efficient. It takes me forever to process pictures. Part of it is that I’m fussy, another is I like to experiment, but the major problem is a lot pictures come out a bit fuzzy because I’m shooting fast and through a narrow window and getting a perfect image of a bird in motion can be tricky. I really like the image so I try to find a way to make it work, even though I should delete it.

        I probably need to stop doing that. I waste hours of my day trying to make blurry or fuzzy images sharper that they can be and even when I go as far as I can, the picture is not good enough. So I’ve wasted a ton of time for nothing much. I need to simplify and recognize if the picture isn’t sharp, NO amount of processing will make how I want it to look.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I delete the blurry ones. There is a fine line that sharpening in PS will help but it isn’t much. Way back in the day, 18 years ago, Corel had an awesome tool to sharpen a photo but it has never worked in later versions. ☹️


      • I remember that tool. Before I got Photoshop (a farewell gift from my employer) I hbad Corel. Or whatever it was called It has changed names three times since I first bought. it

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m not sure what you have. Corel has always been Corel but the updated versions have changed a little just like everything else. That particular feature was at its best back in the good old days. 🙂


      • It was originally JASC Software. It was a small piece of the WordPerfect family.

        Click to access History_of_Corel.pdf

        It’s just interesting. There were mergers, renaming, rebranding. But that’s how the industry has gone through the years. I probably followed it more closely because I worked in it. Each new product was (usually) better, though I think the latest greatest stuff is much less destructive than earlier versions. It is much more like Photoshop and Photoshop has picked up a few pieces from Corel. Part of that is the “migration” of developers. We were a very migratory crowd and very few people stayed with one company more than a couple of years. I have a really interesting history in the business, but you have to be a total nerd to find it entertaining.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Love the diagram of the history. I used Quattro and WordPerfect back in the day. I’ve been using Corel since 1998. I prefer it to Illustrator. I’m not a developer but a designer and as long as it works, I’m a happy camper. 🙂 Makes me a geek too!


      • It wasn’t really always Corel. Way back when it was PaintBox then PaintBox 2-3-4-5 and THEN it was Corel PaintBox and Corel Painter and all the runs of Corel products. My problem with it is that with each change of title and feature set, they left some nifty tool out. They have improved it by making it far less destructive — it used to be a big time noise producer, but some of their early automated features were really cool and they had a really good organizational structure. They lost that as they transitioned to a better product. It was a great organizational tool and then — really suddenly — it wasn’t. When JASC was eliminated, the transformation made the product pretty weird for a few years. I think only recently was I able to consider using it again. I still haven’t wrapped my head around it, though. I own it, but it just takes up room on my hard drive.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I use CorelDraw everyday. I prefer it to Illustrator for designing vector files whatever it is. Decals, stamps, license plates, coffee mug, etc. My photo images are done in Photoshop where I combine the vector with the image. 🙂


      • I don’t have money for more software right now. It has been a difficult year for money as well as everything else. But hopefully, we’ll be out of this hole at some point and then I’m going to rethink whether or not I can manage a subscription to PS and some other tools. Drawing tools would be REALLY useful. The problem is that WordPress is not aiming its software at photographers or artists. It seems to have forgotten that there are probably MORE photographers and artists than writers. There “new” graphics are really kind of awful. Their mosaic patterns don’t load and half the time, even if it does load, when you display the post, the space is blank.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I noticed that about the Mosaic too. Money is tight since I lost my job and I really need my Etsy shop to do well. It was busy and steady and last month was really slow like when I first started. It’s a bit irritating but I keep going. I know it can succeed, but the economy and the pandemic is making it that much harder. 🙂


      • Funny about that. I ran an online shop of Ruby Land — very successfully — for five years until the 2008 crash. Since all I sold were luxuries — antiques and collectibles from dolls to porcelain — I closed a month later. I had vowed that as long as I was at least breaking even (after the first three months of getting started) — I wouldn’t hang on. I knew the market would come back, but what I didn’t know was whether or not I would have the same sources. A lot of things that were inexpensive when i started had gone way up in price and the antique doll market was drying up. I probably started the cast iron collectibles/antiques market. I was able just that once to look ahead and i was sure that they would get very popular and bought a LOT of them before anyone even noticed how many of them were for sale for nearly nothing. A year later, the market went BOOM and I did very well for about four of the five years. The first year, I needed to “get noticed.” And I had to buy stuff, like lights because I was photographing very small things, or doing extreme closeups to show surfaces on antique porcelain and cast iron and dolls. I decided i was going to be the “Peterman Catalogue” on the internet, so I wrote stories about everything and I think the writing sold more than the items. In 2008, the over-extended mortgage market crashed and while it wasn’t COVID, it was an economic catastrophe. I didn’t have a year or two to wait for the economy to gradually recoup, so I shad a few months of closing sales and then, I was done. THAT is why I have so many dolls and stuff in the house. It’s the leftovers from the shop!

        I figured occasional one or two month dips were okay, but when things moved on to three months, I needed to figure out whether or not my stock was getting old and where to get new items at reasonable prices — which got increasingly difficult as eBay went from selling thing with actual value to total junk. I understand they’ve improved since then, but there was a period when they were REALLY REALLY awful and you’d order things and you might never get them at all, or you’d get a pile of junk that bore no resemblance to your order.

        It was time to get out, in the end, but I sure do miss that money. The Ruby Lane years (my shop was named “Kismet”) were fun, though I was constantly working, either buying, wrapping, selling, invoicing (and this was before sales tax), moving money around from PayPal to my real account. Owen helped with the packing which was lucky because that alone became exhausting and the house was FULL of packing materials. I never threw away a box or a piece of bubble pack.

        So actually I REALLY know what you mean! First hand, as it were. Now, I don’t think I could handle the 20 hour days I was putting in. I’m 12 years older and several major surgeries down the line. Not to mention 74, not 62. Those years make a big difference.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I was working 12-14 hour days during the holidays but I work 6-8 now. So many people were effected in the 2008 crash, but totally different than this pandemic and the economy now. I’m going to stick with this through this year and see what happens. There are no jobs for me right now. One of my friends who is a graphic designer too is applying to 7-10 jobs per day and has been for a month. Rejection after rejection. Hope things get better soon! 😊


      • Sums it up pretty well. We are strong and we will get through this just like all of our relatives did before us. At least progress is finally being made in the fight against the pandemic. Slow as it is, we are moving forward in the right direction. 🙂


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