Tuesday, 25 May 2010

How to get blood out of a stone

If there's one thing that drives you nuts when scrapbooking it's finding photos of a family event with people carrying cameras. Have you seen the photos they took? No, you haven't .... The exception in my case is my Uncle Edwin who took lots of photos at my wedding and gave them to me. I do that now at any wedding I go to. Sadly my wedding was in 1984, the era of gone-a-nasty-red prints, but we still have a few good shots.

So, how do you extract photos from the family?

First of all, show them a few of your layouts, preferably a whole album. That will show them what you can do with photos and might encourage them to hand them over.

Secondly, make it easy for them to share photos. And by share I do, of course, mean share high resolution photos. The kind of sharing we have on Facebook and some other sites shrinks the images, understandably since why would Facebook want to spend their millions of dollars on providing massive servers for millions of falling down drunk photos? The question of why Facebook users want to share their falling down drunk photos is the suject of another article (or a PhD in psychology....).

I've gone completely overboard with my "Extract family photos even if they never speak to you again" project and have a whole site dedicated to it: Horswill Family Photos. I'm not suggesting you do that although I'll report on how it goes in case some elements are useful to you. The main thing is to let family know what you need and tell them how to get it to you.

My "how to join in" page is HERE.

The My Family sites are very useful. I think it was $9.95 for the first year and $29.95 thereafter. You can run them like a mini social networking site for your family or just us them for photos. The album system is somewhat limited in that they list them one after the other with no categories but members can download full size pics. So all you need to do is get your family to join and upload theirs.

Anything that people have to join creates an obstacle but I chose this system because at least the sites are completely private and that might get me more pictures. Here's hoping!

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