I’m carbon dating myself but I remember the days when my grandparents returned from a lengthy trip to Europe and we all sat around looking at their slides projected onto a wall. It was hardly instant sharing – the film had to be developed and mounted so the slides could be slotted into the projector and there was a fair bit of phaffing about getting it all set up.
As I grew up, and through my early adulthood I became enamoured of lovely photo albums where I’d cherry pick the best of my holiday snaps and use special photo corners to mount the pictures without using glue or sticky tape on the back. At one point in Italy I bought a supply of beautiful albums covered in exquisite hand-printed paper. A couple are filled but several remain unused.
The digital photobook has taken over from albums and they are lovely to look through but in this age of instant communication I’m not sure anybody bothers. It’s all about sharing at the spur of the moment to make your family and friends feel like they are on the road with you.
Perhaps it’s because I actually remember slides that I’m not the most digitally savvy traveller (I have a 10 year old son for that) but I’ve learnt a few tricks along the way about the easiest way to share pics.
Quick, easy and free, Facebook allows its members to post status updates together with a photo, which could be from your photostream on the camera, from your tablet, or from your PC or laptop. There’s a size limit so it’s usually best to post a medium resolution image, not a huge file.
You can also build albums, create a photo carousel or a slide show to easily share coverage of your whole trip.
Quirky and fun Instagram is a brilliant way to share family travel moments. If you have internet access via your phone data or wi-fi you can literally do it as it happens. You also have the option of linking it to your Facebook account, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr or Swarm to post simultaneously. You can tag friends and use hashtags to help others see your shots.
Apple iCloud sharing
For Apple users only. Create an album of your own photos in your stored cloud account and nominate a contact or group of people with whom you want to share.
Create photos or videos within the app and send them to a controlled group or list of recipients, setting a time frame for how long your recipients can view them (usually 1-10 seconds) before they disappear.
This is great to communicate messages and photos with a group of friends or family and you don’t need to have internet access to use it.
Instant sharing direct from the camera
Many newer digital cameras have inbuilt wi-fi so you can send photos you’ve taken instantly to social networks or email contacts.
There are plenty more free and paid services that will store your photos and allow you to share – think Flickr (free in its basic iteration, but with paid accounts that allow you to do more), Picasa, SmugMug and Photobucket. It’s really about finding a service that you find easy to use and reliable as far as storage and privacy are concerned.