Backing up your photos is a must these days. Since there are no longer hard copies of photos, digital copies of photographs must be guarded like gold. In this article, I will explain why it is so important to keep your files in multiple places. I will also talk about different ways that you can store photos.

Hard Disk Drive vs. Solid State Drive

Hard disk drives are very complicated but all you need to know is that they move. There is a moving arm and a plate that spins inside the drive. You will often hear this or feel it if you have ever used an external hard drive. The problem with all this movement is that the drive has a greater chance of breaking. Especially if it were to be dropped. Solid state hard drives, on the other hand, have no moving parts. They just have nanochips inside and act more like the chip you use to take photos on. Solid state drives have been all the rage in recent years. They are safer and people like that.

This is good news if you are still in the market for traditional hard disk drives. It seems that the price has gone way down ever since solid state drives became so popular. I wouldn’t worry about still using traditional drives especially if you have multiple ones. They have proven themselves over the years and still work well for saving information.

Flash Drives

A flash drive is a small storage device that can be transported easily. Although I would not recommend using a flash drive to do all of your backups, they are good for certain things. I have seen flash drives that can hold 256 GB of storage, an amount of storage that is insane for me to comprehend. Since they are so small, I would venture that the download speed would be much slower than a larger counterpart. But if you are traveling and want to keep a backup of images or files, flash drives work great. Just be careful not to lose it, their tiny size proves to be a problem in that department.

Cloud Storage

Backing up photos online is becoming increasingly more popular. Its a really convenient and practical way to store photos and files. While you do have to pay for most online storage, the benefits are well worth it. First of all, you don’t have to plug in a machine to load up files, it can all be done right on your computer. You can access the files whenever you want without even having to have your own computer with you. It allows you to travel without bringing along an external hard drive. The storage facilities that you pay for are also very advanced. They have safety mechanisms in place to protect against surging and other threats, so your files are safe.

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Worth the Cost?

Let’s face it, storage is not cheap. Although it is a lot less money than it used to be, it still costs a bit for an external hard drive. Let me just say that the investment is 100% worth it. The key to backing up files is that you have to do it now. There is no point in talking about picking up a drive in a week. For all, you know your computers hard drive could crash in 5 minutes. You must be proactive and back everything up as soon as you upload it onto your computer. Photographs are priceless and although storage is an investment, it’s well worth protecting the memories that you have captured.

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Peace of Mind

When you finally get your photos backed up in a few different places it gives you a peace of mind. You can format all of your cards without that worry that you might be deleting something forever. If you are working professionally, you no longer have to worry if your client’s photos will get accidentally deleted. You have multiple copies so if one fails you there is always a backup.

3 Different Places

I know that this can sound a little extreme, but in college I was always told that I needed to be saving my photos onto three different drives. When you break it down and compare it to analog terms it’s really not that crazy though. In the olden days, there was the film negative. That was what every image came from so, in essence, it was your file. Then people would make prints from that, usually multiple prints. So in theory, if you made 2 prints and had the original film, that’s technically 3 “files.” Nowadays we will make an image and never get it printed. The only representation of that image is the digital file that it came from.

If you are a pro you MUST be saving your files to 3 different hard drives. There is just too much that can go wrong if you lose files that clients are counting on. If you are just shooting photos for fun I still recommend at least saving your files to 2 different places. Photos are way too special to get lost, plus if you save everything it’s really fun to go back and look at them years later.


This may sound silly, but I strongly encourage any photographer to print their photos. It’s just not something that a lot of us do anymore. Photos are transformed once they jump off of your computer and land on paper. Even if you don’t love the images, print them still! Print them and hang them up around you so you can see them because they will make you better. There is something really special about being able to hold the final product of your photography. As an added bonus you now have another backed up photo. When you print images they are guaranteed backups against the digital world. If all of our technology crashes, you will still be able to hold those photos and remember the better times.


Please back up your photos. They are precious and that the way you would treat them. Save yourself a headache and backup your files. I promise you it will be worth it. Would you rather be upset you spent $100 on an external hard drive or upset that you didn’t?

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