One of my biggest bug-bears has to be how to organise all my images.  And I have a lot!

Throughout the concept, design and making process, I take numerous images to be used on social media.  And they add up.

For years, I’ve been dealing – or rather not dealing, with this problem.

It’s one of those situations where I know I should be doing something. I should be organising, I should be deleting as I go – I should, I should, I should.

A recent request for a Tiff file of a Jpeg image had me shaking in my boots.  Not just that, but I had to go back and trawl through all my images to find the ones I knew were there.  It’s time-consuming and a complete time-waster, because I’m just not organised.

I had set up a system a few years ago, but I lost interest because it was too complicated.  Big mistake.

I now have a new system that I think will be easier to use, houses all my images in one place, and includes all the business information relating to the work.  And I’m keeping it on my desktop – so I have to see it every time I open my computer.  Clever!

Fingers crossed this works as I’m frustrated and irritated with how I’ve let this go on.

Are you the same?  Taking images of our textile and fibre art is so important.  It’s imperative if you exhibit, or simply if you want to use images of your artwork on social media.  But if you’re like me, pretty soon everything is mixed up with home and family, dogs and sunsets.

I’m not paying for a third-party site to store my images, nor do I want anything fussy – been there. This has to be sensible and usable and make sense to me and my needs.

These are the steps I’ve generated so far to try to keep on top of the thousands of images I have – many I want to keep, many I don’t.

  • all my images are taken on my phone – and my phone is linked to my computer
  • on the larger screen, I can decide if these images are worth keeping – and I’m now ruthless about deleting poor images
  • my desktop houses one Image folder which then houses several other folders according to the categories that meet my needs
  • so my process now is that if I take photos, I categorise them asap within their appropriate folder
  • then I delete those images from my computer app and my phone

So far so good.  It’s working.  I’m trying to devote time each day to categorize the thousands of images remaining, but I now have confidence I can get this done.

This has taught me a valuable lesson.  Do not ignore problems.  And part of that is a fear of working with technology – so I just have to bite the bullet and get on with it.

Already feeling good though as I’ve cleared my desktop and begun working on that backlog.  I’ll continue to chip away at it over time, but so far, I’m hopeful.

I think the most valuable part of this process is that I will have all images relating to the work in one place – work-in-progress images, full and detailed images, even photoshoot images.  To accompany this will be any documentation relating to the artwork, including the artist statement, size, materials and techniques, and the price.  I’ll also make a note of where the work has been exhibited and if it’s been sold.

All I can say at this point is, I hope this works.  This has been an ongoing problem for me, but I’m the only person who can fix it.

Fingers crossed.

cathy jack coupland