Although many photographs are now taken digitally and stored online or on a computer, it is important to know how to properly store and care for your printed photographs. Prints have to be properly stored in order for them to last without fading or aging over time. There are a number of different ideas for photo storage that you can employ based on personal preference and how many photographs you have to store.
Photo Album Storage
Photos can store well in archival-quality photo albums, provided that you use proper storage methods. It is important that you take steps to protect your photographs when storing them in photo albums. If the photo album ages prematurely, then the photos may become damaged. Special photo protector pages exist; you can load these into a three-ring binder. These photo protector pages have pockets that are sized perfectly for standard-sized photographs, such as 4-by-6, 3-by-5, 5-by-7 and 8-by-10.
Another option for protecting your photos is to glue them into scrapbooks. Choose archival-quality photo books and photo corners or glues that are specifically intended for photos. Some glues, pens and photo corners contain chemicals that can corrode or otherwise damage your photographs. Make sure that every product you use is archival-quality and photo-safe to keep your photographs stored safely.
Digital storage should not be your only storage strategy, but it can benefit you all the same. Scan in your photos and keep digital copies so that you have a backup if the originals ever become damaged. If you take your photos digitally and print them out, consider keeping original copies on a CD or disk so that you can refer to them again later. Having digital copies of all of your photos, new and old, is a great way to ensure that you always have copies when you need them.
Photo boxes are generally available at office supply, scrapbook and craft stores, and they are becoming an increasingly popular method for photo storage. Some boxes come equipped with dividers that you can label for easy organization of your photos. The photo boxes are designed to keep photos clean, dry, protected from light and otherwise safe from harm while they are stored away.
Jennifer Uhl has been writing professionally since 2005. She writes primarily for the web and has been published as a ghostwriter in "Tropical Fish Magazine" and "Entrepreneur." She is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in health care from Mira Costa College.