Last month I talked about some questions you should ask your wedding photographer. One of those was making sure they have a good backup system for your photos after they’re taken. This is SO important to your photographer choice, especially your wedding photographer since those moments can’t be replicated. Backing up your images ensures that even if their computer or hard drive fails, they will still be able to deliver your images to you. I thought I would take you step by step on my backup process for all of my photo sessions. Here’s how I keep your photos safe!
Step 1: Shoot on Two Memory Cards
I would be remiss if I didn’t start with the way I use memory cards in my camera. Most professional cameras have 2 memory card slots. So while I’m shooting, the photos aren’t getting captured on one card, but TWO! The second card slot functions as a backup copy of the photos I take during your session. I do this for peace of mind and on the off chance that one of the cards malfunctions before I can back them up.
Step 2: Copy Photos to External Hard Drives
As soon as I get home after a wedding or photo session, I start copying the RAW files on the memory cards to TWO different external hard drives. No matter how long a day I’ve had, I can’t go to sleep without doing this first. I’ve had nightmares about missing photos if I don’t back them up as soon as I’m home.
Step 3: Copy to Cloud Storage
Having a copy of the images separate from the rest that can be accessed from anywhere is extremely important. As a part of my backup system, I upload RAW files to Dropbox at the same time as I’m copying them to my external hard drives.
Step 4: Save Unformatted Memory Cards
Until I deliver the edited image gallery and ensure there are no issues, I keep the unformatted (undeleted) memory cards filed away in a container in my office. If there is a problem with any of my backups, I’ll turn back to my memory cards to get images to you!
The backup process is such an important part of the photography process. With a backup process in place, you can be sure you will receive your edited images safe and sound.