“Not everything worth keeping has to be useful.”
I'm pretty good about getting rid of things that are cluttering my house. Emphasis on pretty good. I have papers scattered about in my office that need to be filed, shredded, or simply just thrown out. Amongst the papers are piles and piles of art projects my kids have brought home from school. I have this overwhelming sense of guilt every time I even think about throwing those projects in the trash. My kids worked so hard and are so proud of the things they create. I can relate. I feel the same about my photography and would never "throw out" any of my projects. Every final image gets saved, backed up, and archived.
Last year, after the art project pile got out of control, I decided I would photograph each piece of art and assemble it into a picture book. Genius, right? I was able to archive every piece of art from 2011 and have a fun keepsake for the kids to look back at years from now. 2012 was no different. I have even more art to photograph because both kids are now in preschool! I'm working on photographing the large pile of art- hopefully I'll have the 2012 book complete soon!
Want to archive your kids art into a fun keepsake? It's so simple-
1. Designate a place in your house for all of your kids art work and collect it there. I do this by calendar year- not by school year. You can choose to do it either way.
2. Photograph each piece. The smart way to do this would be to photograph it as it comes home. I'm not so smart and photograph it at the end of the year. I know, I know. The pile takes over my office.
3. Upload your images to your computer.
4. Choose a company to design and print your book. I've used Shutterfly and Mpix in the past. Both are great. Shutterfly often offers free photo books and you just pay shipping!
5. Once you receive your book, throw out the art work and start new. I usually save a couple of my favorites, though. :)
My kids LOVE looking through last year's art book. I know that years down the road I will be happy that I archived their art this way. Plus, I'll be able to show it to their families someday, too!