Since the launch of the original 1G iPhone I have been taking pictures, and later on videos with it. After two years and more than 4.000 photos, I needed a way to backup those precious pictures. I sync them with iPhoto, so the contents are pretty much the same, plus everything is copied to a Time Machine drive automatically. Where is the need to save them somewhere else?
Time Machine would delete older copies to save the latest information from my Macbook. I can stand not having a picture in physical format, but I need a hard copy, something I can store in a safe place and won't get corrupted or deleted as easily as an external hard drive. The day after Christmas I decided I would save them on DVD.I found out that backing up your iPhoto library burning it to a CD or DVD is dead easy. I have chosen a Sony AccuCore DVD-R 16x compatible, which sound very impressive but was the cheapest I found at the local Fnac during my holiday in Spain. One DVD won't be enough, so I'm going to try different brands, including the fancy double layer ones, that I hope my laptop can handle.
The process is simple: Open your iPhoto and select all the pictures you want to back up. I have sorted them in events to make it easier, you can also use a smart folder. In the menubar select Share>Burn and you'll be prompted with some burning options. You can also select the name of the DVD and you get a representation of the space used and empty in it.
Saving your pictures with this method will ensure that iPhoto can recognize the library, but Windows PCs won't be able to read them. If you need to take a CD to print your pictures in a shop, for example, iPhoto recommends to export the pictures and burn using the Finder. I found much more convenient to burn it the DVD as an iPhoto library, since it's richer and contains original and modified versions as well, just like your Mac.