I’m about to share a secret with you. I’m guilty.
Totally and utterly guilty of not printing my photos.
Yes, you’re on a photographer’s blog. And yes, I just fully admitted that I’m THE worst at moving my photos from hard drive to archival paper so I can hold them in my hands.
Now that the cat’s outta the bag, I’d like to encourage you to NOT do what I do. Y’all, print your photos! In case you need a little nudge in the right direction, here are 3 reasons why you need to print your photos, like, now.
Prints are Tangible
Meaning, you can actually HOLD them. It’s been a little over a year since our trip to Belize (and man, what an incredible trip that was). We arrived at the airport early for our return flight to the US so we spent a little time meandering through the duty-free shops and ended up finding this really cool photo album made with natural materials found around Belize. Of course, we decided to buy it and upon arriving home, I promptly edited my photos and actually sent them off to print. When I got the prints back, I spent some time putting the photos in our new album. And now every time I want to reminisce or share our trip with someone, I pull out the album. Not only that, it’s proudly displayed in our living room, so it makes a nice conversation piece.
Anytime I see that red, white, and blue “Antiques” flag, we generally stop to check it out. You never know what kind of treasures you can find, but mostly I’m searching high and low for the older versions of the Hardy Boys series – a challenge I took on to help my dad re-build the series he had as a kid (we’re almost complete, by the way!). Anyway, every so often you’ll find a basket full of old photos of random people and I can’t help myself but to stop and rifle through them. You see, I find it fascinating. You can tell a lot about a time in history by how people were dressed, what kinds of cars they drove, what the houses looked like… you get the point.
Back then, people used film and hard drives didn’t exist. So if you wanted to even see your photos, you had to develop and print them – thus preserving the moment forever. Think about the legacy these photos leave. Now, I’m not saying you need to print them so they end up as spectacles for random antique’rs. I’m saying you need to print them so that your family has the hard copies to record and share your visual legacy.
Prints Display your Investment in your Family
Your photo session was not only an investment of your money, but also an investment of your time. Time spent creating a visual legacy for your family and future generations. Your investment shouldn’t live in the digital realm only to see the light of day once a year when you’re making Christmas cards. Print, print, print them as soon as you get them and display your family memories, connections, and love for all to see.
Where to print photos
Now, you’re probably thinking. Alright, alright, Nicole. So, where do I print? Here are a few recommendations of places to print:
Through your photographer
The best piece of advice I have is to print through your photographer. Most professional photographers are already set up with professional printing companies, which helps ensure quality and color. Some photographers will require that you print through them (and perhaps nix the print release in the process). Since I provide my clients with digital images, I always provide a print release, which means they can print whenever and wherever they want. But because of the way technology differs these days, print quality and color will vary by printing company. I’m always sure to let them know that I can only guarantee the quality of the prints if they use my printing company.
mpix.com is the second place I always recommend to my clients for their printing needs. Here’s why: mpix.com is the consumer side of a professional print lab, which means that quality is a big deal for them. The paper they use is top notch and the colors are closest to what it would be like if you printed from my printing company.
Artifact Uprising is a fun place to order if you’re looking for something unique. Their fine art prints are printed on thick textured paper and are some of my favorite prints I have to date. Their albums are beautiful and they have other unique photo gifts that are great for friends and family for birthdays or holidays.
Where NOT to print photos
Like I mentioned above, technology differs SO much these days. A professional photographer is usually working on a color-calibrated screen. But that doesn’t mean that every printing company has calibrated their machines. I highly recommend steering clear of drug store/box store printing (I will say that Costco has always been fairly accurate, but it’s been a really long time since I’ve printed there and I’m not sure what it’s like now). Generally the final result is printed on cheap paper and the colors are VERY off. And we all know that you’ve invested in your photographer because you love their work but bad prints can alter that work in a heartbeat.
Alright, friend. I’m challenging you (and myself) to print more photos. It’s time for our legacies to be out in the open for us to share instead of locked up tight in the digital world! Let’s get printing!
Hey, when’s the last time you had some updated family photos taken? Are you looking for some new photos to print and display? I’d love to help. Will you drop me a note so we can check some calendar dates? And if you’re just here for the content, welcome! Don’t forget to get on the newsletter list – I like to send out awesome info just like this every month! Click here to subscribe!