What’s in a name?

What’s in a name?

Hooray – you made it to the final step

For those that missed step 1 to 3 of how to MOON walk you can read those posts by clicking here.

The final step of our MOON walk to help you achieve organised photos is NAME


  • now that you have mustered, organised, observed and purged it is time to give your images a unique name
  • and the key to this step is to be specific!
  • the difference between an image named “Us at BBQ” or “img001354” and “20130619 Mara and Paul BBQ lunch at Aunty Karen’s in Penshurst” might seem like overkill but we promise that this one simple step will save you hours of time in the future.   In years to come you might not even recognise the location or the people.
  • Re naming while dates, locations, names and faces are fresh in your mind will have everyone in awe when in 10years time Aunty Karen is selling up and collecting memorabilia of the old house and you can search for and find images in SECONDS (yes that fast) by searching the keywords you included when you first saved them.
  • Windows file path character limit is 260. Path includes not only the name of the document itself but also the names of all the folders in between the file and the root of the drive.  So using the same example D:Images2013201306.June20130619 Mara and Paul BBQ lunch at Aunty Karen’s in Penshurst is 81 characters from the root so you would still have well over 150 characters left for the file name if needed.

Here is a real life example of how giving your photos unique and specific names can save you time and make you look awesome.

  • This is a photo of the back deck at our old house, built by a friend of ours.  Luke wanted to show our deck to a prospective client    but as we have moved out of that house and he and the prospect both live in the Hunter Valley he wondered if I had any photos I could send him.
  • He asked me this recently – so it took me less than 2 seconds to search for and find this photo.  Had he asked me last year it would have taken me hours to scan manually through small preview panes looking for this photo.
  • How did I find it so fast? – by following our simple photo filing guidelines, I was able to search for the key word ‘deck’ and viola – there it was.  For me looking for a specific image from a date or location is as simple as looking for a teaspoon.
  • another important note re naming your files is to use names not nouns
    • e.g. use Mara not “me”, use Nancy not “nanna” etc
  • Why? you ask, imagine in 30 years time my daughter wants to make me a photo book for mothers day including 3 generations.  If she were to search “mum” she would have got photos of MY mum, given that I call my mum, mum and she calls me mum, she might even be a new mum herself – see how confusing that can be to try and pinpoint the right image.  Specific naming is ideal for sorting and organising images and particularly useful for projects like photo books (stay tuned as we will be talking at length about photobooks in the coming weeks).

So there you have it the 4 steps of our digital photo filing MOONWalk



Observe and Purge


Next week we will be talking about BACKING UP.

Remember you can download the MOON walk below

If this all seems like overload and you need some more help we can deliver one on one coaching in the comfort of your home, using equipment you are familiar with.  You can book an obligation free 15min call here

Have a magical day


  • 10 simple tips to get your digital photos organised | The Filing Fairies
    Posted at 08:33h, 12 October

    […] Use consistent names: When I save my photos I use descriptive names using a WHEN>WHERE>WHO>WHAT sequence to make them easy to search for later. For example, if I take a photo of my daughter Gabi on September 25, 2015 at Bondi Beach I would name my photo “20150925 Bondi Beach Gabi sandcastle” then place it in the 2015 09 September folder within my 2015 folder. This allows me to search for only photos of Gabi or only photos taken at beaches later on. I use the same key words as often as possible for consistency. Remember to use proper names e.g. not mum or nan – as over time it will be an issue as to whose mum or nan you are referring to. Or you can use a combination e.g. Nanna June […]

  • 6 benefits of having your photo life organised | The Filing Fairies
    Posted at 09:43h, 02 November

    […] Ease of access: in a nutshell if you can FIND a photo when you need it you can use it for all manner of reasons, read how I was able to quickly source a photo to help a friend land some new business. […]