My clients often come in with something in mind they want for their home. Some are album people and love a beautiful album to look through and some want a gorgeous piece of wall art to display above their fireplace or in their foyer. But what should you purchase? And why are digitals not always the piece you should strive for?
When purchasing art from your session there are so many beautiful options that I as a professional photographer can offer you. Each time I come back from a conference I am excited about all the new items that are being produced and the sheer quality of them astounds me. Part of my job as your photographer is to stay abreast of new things, of which labs have the best quality, but to also remember that the classics will always be just that, classic. I revel in being able to show you the options, listen to your style and see pictures of your home to help you make the purchases that are going to wow you every time you see them. My favorite cards and emails are when people talk about hanging a gorgeous metal in their foyer and their friends’ jaw dropping when they come over. I mean how cool is that that a piece of art that has your family on it has the ability to be that amazing?
1. Let’s talk digitals. These for some are like the holy grail. It it the first question I am asked oftentimes. For some reason, in this digital age everyone thinks they want the digitals; its a must. One thing I have been trying to get across to my clients is this little blurb I read a long time ago: The most photographed generation thus far will have nothing to show for it (then Mike Yost wrote a blog post about it-read it HERE). While it is nice to possibly have the digital images I implore you to think carefully about purchasing just the digital images. Since I have started allowing my clients to see their images in person and all of the options, they don’t even ask for the digitals!
Why? Lets take a look at the image below…Remember The Oregon Trail? Come on, you know you do. We slipped that big floppy disk into those old Macintosh computers and played our hearts out. So what happens if you had gotten married during that period and only received your digital images on that floppy disk? When is the last time you saw a drive for those? What about the next great thing, the updated one that came in neon colors and was so “compact”? I have college papers on those disks that I would love to read but alas, I can’t anymore. What was en vogue shortly after I began my photography business were cds. But you know what? My MacPro I ordered a year ago didn’t have an option for a CD drive and if I wanted it on my MacBook (ordered about 2 years ago) it was an extra charge. Technology is moving faster these days and storage is becoming outdated shortly after its introduction.
So, when just purchasing the digitals you are taking on the responsibility of diligently keeping up with technology and transferring your images from the old media storage to the next big thing each time it comes out. You are also taking on the responsibility of backing everything up because digital storage is notorious for failing, corrupting, etc. Once a hard drive corrupts it can cost thousands to recover your media and lots of times you lose some or all of your images. In all actuality digital storage is meant to be used as temporary storage just until your gorgeous products are ordered. Things like CD-ROM and DVD-ROM discs were never meant as a long term storage solution. Neither are USB keys or hard drives; no electronic storage system is infallible. Not to mention, God forbid your hard drive get stolen or you lose your flash drive! And I know you think you will get around to it but most of the clients I surveyed who just purchased the digitals said, a year later they had never printed anything. Your gorgeous family images don’t look that beautiful on that cold flash drive in your drawer, I promise. Part of my job and why you hire me as your professional photographer is to keep up with all of this, to take care of your digital media.
But I do admit, I love having my digital images as a compliment to my printed products/art so this year I will be doing something special for those that place orders for albums and wall art in the studio during their Reveal & Order Session. Don’t take my word for it…Just two articles among so many but from reputable sources, The Today’s Show (HERE) and the Telgraph (HERE) with an interview from Google VP.
2. Now, lets talk about prints. If you do go the all digital route you will be in charge of printing your own products. The quality will suffer for sure but you are thinking this is going to be less expensive and easy right? Well maybe…but maybe not. First lets talk about the difference between archival professional prints and consumer (albeit good ones) lab prints. Let’s say you just purchase your digital images and print your own products at a consumer lab. That digital media goes by the wayside making way for something newer and your consumer prints fade so much that the color appears to be black and white (and yes this WILL happen). So then you have to send that old digital media out to a speciality lab to retrieve your images and put on the newest media; who knows how much that will cost. Then you will have to reprint those faded images. Sounds like this is getting expensive right? Not to mention this is taking your time, which isn’t cheap. When you order your product/art through me you will be receiving archival quality prints which are guaranteed to last and not fade for over 200 years when properly cared for. Just think, instead of trying to keep up with the ever-changing digital media and hanging on to a flash drive in your drawer, you will have something tangible; something your grandkids can curl up on your living floor many years from now with you and look through; I can just hear the giggling and smiling! That was always one of my favorite things (and still is) to do, look through pictures in my grandmother’s albums. My other grandmother has a huge wall of portraits and pictures she adds to all the time that I love to gaze at. You can’t do either of those with flash drives and lets be honest, if I am going to invest in family pictures I don’t want them to fade after a few years. Also, my professional products are guaranteed. They will be beautiful or we will fix it. The color will be gorgeous, the quality will be unsurpassed, you will LOVE them…I will make sure of it!
3. My favorite combination, of course, would be am mixture of both digital images as well as professional art. This year I will making that happen for my clients because it’s what I would want as a client. When you purchase albums or wall art totaling a specific amount I will be including the digital images of those images for you. That way you can have your gorgeous art and you will have a flash drive will fully edited images on it to use for things like yearbook memory pages, birthday invitations, sharing with friends & family online <3 You know, things that don’t require you needing to keep them around and gorgeous for a long time.