engagement tips

How to Not Lose Your Photos | Custom USB Drives for Photography Clients

The Importance of Backing Up Your Memories

Why I Love Custom USB Flash Drives for Clients

As a professional photographer who has worked in the industry since 2011, I cannot tell you how many emails I’ve received from both weddings and portrait session clients, telling me that they accidentally deleted their photos from their phone (or lost their DVD in a move… back in the day when I did DVDs - yikes, I feel OLD!). That is the most heartbreaking thing for any photographer to hear.

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I like to encourage all my clients (past, present and perspective) to do two important things upon receiving and downloading their online gallery:

  • Print your Photos! #printsareforever

  • Back-up your Photos… both online and off-line!

Your memories are PRICELESS! The time, effort and money that you invest in every session/event or wedding cannot be replaced if images are lost. I speak from personal experience when I say that I’ve had computer hard drives crash and also dropped my phone into the Andaman Sea in Krabi, Thailand… never to be revived again. Now, I back-up everything like a crazy person…

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How could I make it easier on my clients? While I may not have any superpowers to magically make their photos reappear (although I really wish I could!), I can provide them with a USB flash drive with their memories as their “first backup” and continue to encourage them to backup their photos on both online and off-line devices.

Enter the Custom USB flash drive! I am excited to partner with USB Memory Direct to bring you the latest Laurentina Photography + Video personalized flash drives. Think of it as a “big hug” from your photographer, a final care package after your gallery has been delivered and you have finalized your collections/order. That drive will not have scratches on it and the life expectancy is along the lines of 1000x reading and writing of images… so basically forever!

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**Sidenote: The funny thing is that I actually used USB Memory Direct for my very first USB order back in 2011.

My latest order from USB Memory Direct is a lovely collection of wooden USBs in the Tower style. The drives are 8 GB and feature a SLC upgrade, which means your files will transfer faster than the average USB — super ideal for photography clients. I am in love with the earthy look of wood, which is ideal for my branding and style as photographer focused on bohemian and whimsical aesthetics. I also like that you can customize the drives with your logo and your contact info with a fun graphic of a camera on the back. The magnetic cap is not only fun to play with, but you don’t have to worry about losing the cap to your USB.

Psstt…. USB drive back-up of your photos make an excellent holiday gift for you and your loved ones!

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Upon receiving your USB, I would recommend putting it in a safe place as your back-up and order extras if you want to share them with family and friends. I know people who have multiple backups of their photos in various locations — just in case. That is another step that you can take to ensure that you will not lose your most precious memories.

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I appreciate USB Memory Direct’s approach on customizing your order: throughout the process, you are interacting with a person, not a bot. They work with you to ensure that your order is exactly what you envision prior to placing your order and provide proofs to make sure everyone is on the same page. Their service is fast and friendly, and I got my drives within 2 business days as a part of the rush production. Not to mention, they have a variety of materials that you can print on and everything is fully customizable.

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Thank you for your partnership with me, USB Memory Direct! I look forward to using the USBs for client photo storage as the 2018/19 engagement and wedding season kicks off!

And clients… don’t forget the most important part of this blog post: BACK UP YOUR PHOTOS! In more than one place!

Best Engagement Session Locations in RVA

Richmond, Virginia is one of my favorite East Coast cities.

A true gem in the heart of the Old Dominion.

The city reminds me SO much of Austin, Texas... and vibrates with funky murals, culture, tattoo parlors, great food, live music and an overall laid-back atmosphere. It is the perfect escape from the hustle of Washington, DC and all points North. 

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When Sarah & Elliott decided on their current hometown for their engagement portraits, I jumped on the opportunity to travel down to RVA for their session. As a DC and Destination Photographer, I love exploring not only new locations... but also locations that are known by locals and definitely "off the beaten path". 

These two adventurous, cat-adoring lovebirds + kitty parents rocked their portrait session and showed me the best of what Richmond has to offer. Not to mention: Elliott hates cilantro and Sarah could live off peanut butter. 

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Here are some of my favorite locations for an engagement session in the River City!

Pipeline Overlook Footbridge

From Sarah: "We went to this new footbridge they put up over the James, because it was a beautiful day. I was getting hangry so I thought we should get some dinner. I started walking back, and turned around because Elliot wasn't next to me. He was down on one knee with the sunset behind him."

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This new footbridge is the ultimate concrete nature walk and goes through the James River Park. This walk is NOT for the faint of heart and is a beautiful way to capture your couple surrounded by the power of the rapids, flowing from the James River.  Don't forget to inhale and exhale as the water sweeps below you. The Pipeline Walkway can be accessed from either Brown's Island or down a ladder from 14th Street. More details HERE

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Canal Walk Murals

As one Yelper so aptly state, "It doesn't get more Richmond than this!" Industrial brick and steel beams frame the many colorful murals in this walk. For this photo shoot, we focused on a few of the murals closer to the river and even used a rustic Richmond sign with its coordinates on it, to celebrate Sarah & Elliott's love for their favorite city and current (possibly forever) hometown!

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I mean... it doesn't get any better than this! No wonder these two VCU graduates love this city and are staying here for LIFE!

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Pedestrian Bridge to Brown's Island

T. Tyler Potterfield Memorial Bridge is an amazing spot to soak up the sunset after a fun-filled day in the city. There are even benches you can sit on to take in the views and plenty of opportunities for people-watching. All of us were elated with the epic sunset that we witnessed at the very end of the engagement session. It made us fall in love with RVA all over again! 

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I hope you enjoyed this blog post, featuring my favorite engagement session locations in Richmond and also the ever awesome Sarah & Elliott! Two weeks from now, they will be official "Mrs. and Mr." and I can't wait to document their April 29th, 2018 WEDDING!