A couple weeks ago I decided it was time to go through big sisters art work--it was time to clean, purge and save. It's hard deciding what art work to keep and what art work to toss as this becomes a battle between the sentimental artist mama vs. the I-don't-want-to-be-on-a-future-episode-of-hoarders mama. But I think I've got a pretty good system and I thought I'd share for any of you who also face the same dilemma when it comes to saving (or tossing) your children's art work.
1. I have PSP separate her artwork into two piles--a keep pile and a throwaway pile. I let her decide. It's her work and she knows what's most important to her. If she's on the fence I gently remind her she can't keep everything. To her credit, she throws a good amount away. (However, it should also be noted that I definitely save some of my favorites from the trash bin. That's the benefit of being the mama right?)
2. We go through her keep pile together and I tell her she can choose 5 to really keep. The rest we'll take a picture of and put in her digital portfolio, then throw away.
3. We put the 5 pieces of art in this memory keeper box we got her for Christmas. It's nice to have a designated place for her work. Eventually we'll go through that as well and probably parse those down to the ones she really, really, really wants to keep and take pictures of the rest again.
4. I upload the pics, edit them a bit and add them to her portfolio. We have a back-up hard drive to help make extra sure these precious memories are saved.
It's a good system for us right now and like anything it can always be revised if at some point it's no longer working. I love looking at these drawings and seeing the detail and thought behind them. I love seeing the progression in her work over the years. Plus, I think it helps her feel like her feel validated knowing that her artwork is important and special to us too. Which it is.
What's your system/philosophy when it comes to your children's art work?