Toolbox: Archival Storage

How the pros do it

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Although professional photographers are always searching for and approaching new clients, a large percentage of their income often comes from images they have shot in the past. Whether measured in months or years, a photographer's body of work is vital to the success of his or her business, as is the lucrative client booked for this week. That's why it's essential for professional photographers to archive and protect their images.

The adoption of digital photography has cleared many studios and offices of plastic sleeves and file drawers. Instead, millions of digital images are now being stored on hard drives and recordable discs. The tools that these professionals own and the way they use them can be beneficial to all photographers, whether seasoned pro or amateur.

The Need for Storage

The increased resolution of digital SLRs, the growth in the use of the RAW file format and 16-bit image editing have all led to larger and larger image files. These bigger files not only take up a significant amount of space on a memory card, but also occupy more space on the hard drives of our desktop and laptop computers. While a computer with a 60 GB hard drive seemed more than ample a couple of years ago, we soon discovered all that real estate was being consumed by a growing number of digital images.

To accommodate this ever-increasing amount of files, pros are expanding their use of alternate storage options, which include external hard drives and recordable discs, like CDs and DVDs.

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