Monthly Musing – September 2022 – Snap happy

“So that’s why you’ve not had any emails!”

Not so small daughter has been waiting for an email … and waiting … and waiting … and it was only by chance when one that I sent to her bounced back that we realised she had run out of storage space and no more emails could be accepted.

“When did you last delete any emails?” I asked her, completely ignoring the fact that I am terrible at remembering to delete emails myself.

“It’s not the emails,” she replied, “It’s the photos!”

It’s so easy to take photos these days, isn’t it? Digital cameras and mobile phones mean that we can snap away without needing to watch the counter on the camera tick down the number of shots left on a film. It doesn’t matter if your digital camera roll is full of lots of out-takes along with the single photo that you know you want to keep, and I know that I am not the only one who will take a couple of shots of the same scene to make sure that I’ve got one I really like.

Gone are the days when we needed to think carefully before pressing the shutter button, when developing the film required a trip into town to a camera shop or you had to send the rolls of film away, and after all that we still had to wait for a couple of weeks until we could finally see what we had photographed (and more than once I had forgotten!). Now, we can snap away to our heart’s content, contained only by the size of the storage on our cameras, SD cards or online storage … and then, like not so small daughter now, we have to start wading through all of the photos to see what we can delete to make a bit of space.

It’s been a slow process. The first ones were easy – photos of the insides of pockets or blurred pavements; selfies that should never have seen the light of day and photos of things that don’t seem to make any sense now but were part of a long-forgotten conversation. That’s the downside of every photo on her phone being backed up into her online storage – she’s sociable on the phone as well as in real life and she has the pictures to prove it!

After that, it gets harder. Photos are memories, and that’s why we take them. For those of us with camera phones, it’s very easy to take photos of pretty much everything most of the time. Looking through my own camera roll, there are hundreds of photos that I’ve taken for the blog but I’ve only used a fraction of them. I should delete the ones I don’t need but they’re a record of my days and sometimes it feels as if deleting the photo deletes the memory. It’s easier to leave them there until something requires me to take some action … like running out of storage!

Not so small daughter is back up and running with her emails now, and her camera roll is considerably lighter. I was about to applaud her efforts until she let it slip that she simply transferred them all to another storage platform – a solution of sorts, but perhaps not a permanent one … ah well, the sorting will wait till another day!


Two packets of photos from photo developers sit on a black photo album. All are lying on a white high-gloss table.


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6 Responses

  1. Barbara says:

    I can totally connect with this post. We are so fortunate in this digital age to have photo’s instantly but oh the rubbish we take. I too have masses of storage but every now and again do have a massive declutter. Isn’t it nice though to look back through the months and years and have those memories. As for photos of the cats….don’t get me started, I bet you’re just the same! B x

  2. Helen says:

    I deleted photos yesterday. Screenshots of recipes that sound delicious but I’m unlikely to cook. Millions of the 3 cats- I feel guilty deleting any of those! Then since April… socks I’ve started, heel flaps, contrasts, Kitchener, socks on my feet…..

    • winwickmum says:

      I’m impressed that you let any go – but well done you for making some space! 🙂 xx

    • Ven Wood-Mewett says:

      such a relevant post, my Google free storage is edging closer to full. I have a friend who religiously every year gets a photo book made of their best photos. I envy her, yet neither her nor I have children…….but as you say they are memories and precious

      • winwickmum says:

        I think we can all have precious memories, no matter who is in the photos, and it’s a lovely idea to get a photo book made for each year. So much easier than putting the photos in the book yourself, too! 🙂 xx

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