Let me ask you a question. Be honest... When was the last time you printed your photos? Whether you paid for a professional portrait session or you took them with your personal point and shoot camera, when was the last time you got physical prints made of your images? Bonus if those prints are on display in your home.
I used to be one of those, "Facebook will keep all my photos for me" girls. Everything was stored online or on CD's or USB drives. Then I lost a CD full of precious photos... cue the panic! I haven't been the same since.
I have to give it to my Mom. She taught me a lot of things and I like to think she raised me right. I actually get my love of photography from her. She always wants to capture a sweet family moment, and I was bitten by that same bug. She also prints all of her images IMMEDIATELY after she captures them. She has physical albums for days stored in her home and I get so much joy sifting through them every now and again. While I may not print my images as fast as she does, I have learned to make sure that my memories are printed for my family to treasure.
As a photographer who sells both digital images and albums and prints, I want to stress to you the importance of printing while still enjoying the immediate satisfaction of a digital print. I provide each client with a recommendation for a quality consumer grade lab they can safely print their images with should they choose not to purchase prints and albums via my professional printing lab. Sorry folks, Walgreens & CVS won't cut it if you want your prints to last for lifetimes.
If you aren't sure it matters much how your pictures are stored, here are 3 reasons to make you a believer in the power of the print:
1. Digital files aren't safe: Contrary to popular belief, you really are at a higher risk of losing images saved on your computer or a disk than you are if your images were printed on quality photo paper. Computers stop working. USB's can get corrupted, lost, damaged and will eventually become obsolete. Anybody have any data saved on a Floppy Disk in 2017? How about do any of you own a Floppy Disk drive? Thought so. With the way technology is advancing, the USB will be a thing of the past in no time. No, there is nothing wrong with saving your files this way, but look at printed images as an insurance policy for your memories.
2. It's a Work of Art: Ladies I'm talking to you right now. How much time and money do we spend decorating our homes only to get bored with our creations months or years later? We buy paintings and pictures to hang in our homes, but why not decorate your home with beautiful images of your loved ones? Ever seen a family portrait blown up and on display in someone's home? It's BREATHTAKING. A classic piece of art that will NEVER go out of style. With the many options available now such as Canvas, Metal, Wood, Glass and more, there is literally something for all interior design styles.
3. Some People Actually Survive Living Off The Social Media Grid: I know it's 2017 and having a Facebook or Instagram account has really become the norm, but I'll bet most of your older relatives don't have an active social media profile. If you are only sharing your images via social media, how's Grandma going to see your beautiful face whenever she wants? When my Grandmother passed in 2014, My Mom and I got custody of her MANY photo albums. It was so nice being able to walk back through memory lane and see what she felt important enough to preserve. I'm willing to bet your Grandmother would prefer a printed image to display in her home over being tagged in an image on Facebook. Everyone has the one friend who refuses to get with the program and create a Facebook account. People are also more concerned about privacy than ever and are deactivating their accounts. Personally, I can't imagine life without Social Media, but it is a chosen reality for many.
Like I stated above, I believe in printing images to preserve them. Hopefully I've convinced you to feel the same. At the very least, I hope I've given you food for thought when it comes to how you choose to preserve your memories!