Friday, March 8, 2013

My Monthly PL Process Part 1: The Raw Data

This year I decided to do my Project Life in a monthly format and I figured there might be some of you that would find it helpful to know how I'm tackling it so as I work through my layouts for February I'll also blog what I'm doing. First up is the raw data - photos and words.

Obviously you need some photos, so I try, over the month, to get a good mixture of event photos and everyday photos using both my DLSR and iphone. I upload these to my computer every few days. This is when I try to cull and edit. I edit in radlab, at this stage I don't usually use any of the special filters, concentrating on getting the levels right, sharpening and any colour correction. Since I usually do some editing on all the photos I plan to keep I also cull fairly heavily, keeping just enough photos to tell the stories I want to tell. The edited photos then go in an album containing the months photos. I also upload them to my smugmug account as an online backup and for photo sharing with friends and family.

At the end of the month I make sure all the photos for the month are edited and uploaded. In February I ended up with 111 photos.

So that takes care of the photos, but what about the words? If you're doing PL weekly the words are a bit easier because you're hopefully doing the layouts fairly soon after the events occurred, although I think with a weekly most people would fall behind at some stage so it is good to have something to refer back to. I'm still completing my layouts from last year using a combination of the photos, blog posts and my calendar to job my memory of what we did each week. What I really love to include are thoughts from the actual day and so this year I'm also using Day One on my iphone. I received a voucher for itunes for Christmas and this was the first thing I bought. You could really use anything, a notebook, the notes on your phone but I like this for a number of reasons, not least of which is that it looks good. It's no surprise that a lot of us are more likely to use something that is visually pleasing ...

The other good thing is that the entries can be words, photos or a combination of both and you can include to use weather and location services. I also have camera+ which you can use from within the Day One app itself. The majority of times when I am taking a photo with my iphone I will take it from within the Day One app using camera+ because I can easily add words right then if I want to and later I can view all the information like, weather, location, date and time easily on one screen.

At the end of the month, when I come to putting together my pages I have four sources of information that I check:
  • My monthly album in iphoto containing all the photos from that month.
  • A timeline view of my month in Day One with extra words that I've written plus dates, locations and weather.
  • My google calendar.
  • My blog posts.
Feel free to leave any ideas comments or questions in the comments.

Next up: supplies

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