Selecting photos for a family slideshow


What makes you dig through old photos?  I am not even sure “makes” is the right word. What inspires, or motivates, or sidetracks you to start to dig through your shoe-boxes or old family albums?  For me it was a project – my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary.   A year earlier I had gathered all the family photos and scanned the collections, but now I had the daunting task of selecting the photos for the family video.  If you are thinking of creating a video you might find these steps helpful when selecting your photos:

  1. Decide on a timeline.  Think about the key events in the lives of the people you are featuring and identify those photos.  This might go on for a while so make sure you have some food and drink close by.  It is also helpful to write down your timeline and then share it with others involved to make sure you have the right order of events.
  2. Decide on the length of the video – this along with how long the photo is on the screen will be the way you will decide on how many photos to use (warning – this may change)!
  3. Equal representation – Ok maybe this will not be the case for you – but I wanted to make sure all of my siblings and their kids felt like they got a fair amount of screen time.  Since I was the designer I obsessed about this way too much.  I watched the video a couple times and felt like my youngest got short changed on screen time but I was just going to leave it.  However, I asked her to watch the video – not because I wanted her opinion on this, I did not even mention it – but to see if the text was coming in correctly on a couple of the slides.  What she reported back to me was “Yes” the text is working and “How come I don’t have as many photos as (my brother and cousin)?  I laughed and she immediately identified the additional digital photos she wanted to add.  And so I would watch again and think – one of my siblings seems like they do not have enough….this went on until the video grew in length from 16 minutes to 21 minutes…and then I just stopped watching.
  4. Enjoy – By the end of the process I was tired of the video.  That is to be somewhat expected.  However, watching my parent’s reaction and seeing their excitement about the photos was all worth it.

The above photo should have been featured in the hairstyle section of the video – (no there was not really a hairstyle section) but in retrospect that could have been a funny component to the video – and believe me there were enough photos to round out such a section.  I am going to keep this idea in mind for a future post!

Here is my favorite photo representing 50 years of marriage for my parents!  233-Broken Top in bkgd

As a life long photo enthusiast I have experienced and heard stories about photo loss. I am here to make sure your photos are preserved and shared for all of your family to enjoy. I can help you sort, secure and tell stories with your photos. I also consult, train, and offers workshops for those who want to learn the skill set to keep their photos organized for future generations. I look forward to helping you connect, share and re-share your family memories through the care and management of your photos.

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  1. Rita Lomasney says:

    Just completed the same exercise for my parents and had the same obsession with equity :)

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"People are taking pictures at a record pace, but many are discovering they lack the time to sort, organize and print these images. The need for the services of a personal photo organizer has evolved as consumers seek out effective solutions for preserving and enjoying their precious memories." - The Association of Personal Photo Orangizers