Having been in IT for some considerable time now, I constantly get asked about photography related IT. “Is there such a thing” I hear you ask! Well, digital cameras are a computer, digital images downloaded from it are required to be stored somewhere, and you probably want to colour correct, alter or store the images, so all this adds up to a yes for photographic related IT. That doesn’t mean to say that you have to be a technical guru to be a photographer, not in any stretch of the imagination, however, I think it makes your life easier if you understand some of the basics of how things connect in the digital world, and some just don’t understand this.
The most often asked question is “should I connect my camera to a computer, or, use a wifi card in my camera to transfer my pictures to my computer or upload to a cloud service?” There is also a simpler way, and that is to take out your SD Card (or whatever your camera uses) from the camera and stick it in your computer with the relevant card reader. I mostly advise people to do it this way as it’s easier to understand. “Why can’t I use a wifi card?” Well, it’s slow for one thing, and it’s also tricky to set up if you have limited knowledge of Wifi networks, and it will use up a lot more camera battery capacity on your DSLR, amongst other quirks like firewall and port number restrictions etc.
Then you start getting into “where should I store my pictures to keep them safe,” that is a lengthy answer (one I can’t go into in any length here) there are so many places these days: Instagram, google drive, dropbox, iCloud.. and the list goes on. You could also buy a little NAS box, the most popular of which is the Synology NAS’s which are pretty easy to set up and manage, they can have multiple disks so if one fails then you won’t lose all your precious pictures. I have one of these but strangely that isn’t where I store my current images, my pictures are on Dropbox, along with my Adobe Lightroom catalogue, which will keep the pictures local as well as keep them safe in the cloud, only when I have finished with images do I put them on my NAS for long-term storage.
Where you decide to keep your images is really a matter of personal choice, but please check carefully with whatever service you use, and make sure your able to retrieve those images (full size) in the future, Also make sure that they can’t be downloaded by anyone else or you will get them stolen and used around the internet. Some of the better services are SmugMug which keep them safe and can even sell your images for you. But please don’t put your saleable images on Facebook, they will sell them and keep the copyright (this is debatable), even if you decide to leave!
Read a few blogs on keeping your pictures safe and secure, there is plenty of information on this subject around, and make a precise strategy for your images early on, and stick to good housekeeping, it will pay off in years to come!