Some people prefer e-Books to save on physical space and paper, while others would say there is nothing like the scent of an old book and the joy of thumbing through its pages. Audiophiles would never be caught outside the house without their music players while hardcore aficionados would invest in a turntable and vinyl records. Lovers of nature can subscribe to digital versions of magazines on their tablets but still buy hardbound books of flora and fauna to be enjoyed with their morning coffee.
Personal blogs and social networking sites enable people to share their photographs with thousands of people all over the world but for those who want a form of intimate, tangible memory, traditional photo albums are still the way to go. It can be said that a digital photo is just another file until it is printed. Unless viewed, it triggers no memory and means nothing to us but a mass of pixels taking up space in our computer’s storage. Sure, it can be displayed via monitor, digital frame, or tablet but unless you’re the type who likes to clutch your computer monitor to your chest and kiss it at sentimental moments when you’re missing someone, a printed photograph is still the best.
But won’t photos fade and turn yellow?
Yes, they do but only if these are not stored properly. The preservation of photographs depends on how these are stored and where. Photos in albums that use adhesives are more likely to deteriorate over time because the adhesives affect the chemicals on the photos. Framed photos hung in direct sunlight are also more prone to fading. There are plenty of modern photo packaging options available that ensure photographs are properly stored without damage over time. These options make use of acid-free material that does not cause fading so that photos are kept in good condition for a long time.
Where should I have my photographs printed?
Home inkjet printers may produce good quality photos but these may gradually fade. The best option for prints that last is to have your photos printed by professional photo labs and commercial printers that use archival ink and professional quality photo paper. There are also companies that offer photo book services. You can easily lay out the photos using a special program, specify the cover type and color you prefer and send the saved photo book file to the company as an email or upload it to their website. The company will then print and send it back to you via mail.
Aside from traditional photo albums, how should I store my photographs?
The other photo packaging options available include folders, envelopes and boxes. These materials also help protect valuable photographs from the elements, as long as these are placed in a cool, dry place. Avoid placing your albums and storage boxes in damp spaces where mold can grow such as basements. Some of the best places for photo storage are interior closets and drawers with moisture-absorbent gels.
Technology may have provided us with the means of sharing our treasured photographs with the rest of the world but special portraits and snapshots are still best viewed in a tangible medium. Traditional photo albums with modern styles and archival materials provide families with a way to store and organize their favorite photos without causing damage, making these albums heirloom pieces that can be passed on to the next generation.
This is a guest post by Debbie Fletcher. Debbie is an enthusiastic, experienced writer who has written for a range of difference magazines and news publications. Follow her here: @Debbie_Fletch18