The Value of Returning to Your Photos

It’s easy to finish a shoot or a vacation and then move on to the next one. But invariably I find gems and worthwhile photos when I return to them later, even more than a year later in this case.

The school district here in Seattle just finished its Winter Break week, which meant that I was treated to many, many photos of friends away in interesting and often warm locations. Hawaii is a fairly easy hop from Seattle. That of course got me thinking about the last time I was there, in 2018 for my wife’s and my anniversary. I went through my photos after the trip and picked out the best ones, and I’ve shared several online (and put them into articles and books).

I captured around 2,400 images on that trip. As I’ve seen my friends’ photos, it’s made me go back through my shots, and in the process I’ve discovered photos that either didn’t stand out at the time, or were ones I didn’t get around to developing. This is the value of knowing exactly where your photos reside, and making them easily discoverable later (as I detail in my book Take Control of Your Digital Photos, Second Edition).

This photo is a vertical panorama of Wailua Falls on the island of Kaua’i, comprised of 7 handheld shots taken at the overlook to the falls. I assembled them in Lightroom (the cloud version) and edited the result there.

It’s easy to finish a shoot or a vacation and then move on to the next one. But invariably I find gems and worthwhile photos when I return to them later, even more than a year later in this case.

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