top of page

Only want the digitals? Five reasons why you should print your images

“I only want the digitals” is a phrase commonly heard by photographers.

You might also think this what you want; but I’d like to suggest an alternative view... that this is not actually what you need.

In this blog I will debunk three typical objections to purchasing a collection with printed images, and give you five reasons why printed portraits are exactly what you want.

Originally published 03/18/2021, updated 07/04/2023

"That USB looks lovely on your wall" —  said no one, ever

1. I’m only ever going to look at the images online anyway

You probably will put them on your phone and computer and enjoy looking at them there for a while - but what happens if you lose your phone or accidentally wipe it during a faulty update? What happens if your computer is stolen or the hard drive corrupts? I lost two years worth of photos when my computer and back-ups were stolen a few years back and I hadn’t printed any of them. Two years worth of memories lost in an instant. It was devastating.

Friends looking at photos on a mobile phone

In the words of Canadian Photographer Cassandra Jones “We are the record keepers” and “legacy preservers”; we are “documenting the world and history as it unfolds”. I think images that support these huge goals and tell the story of you and your family deserve to be printed and preserved for future generations.

With the development of digital cameras we take more photos than ever, perhaps hundreds, maybe even thousands of photos in a year. How will you be able to find the really special ones? The ones that you want to be able to look back on in years to come. How will you find the image of Grandma cuddling her first grandchild when you want to show that image to your daughter on her 21st birthday? A day will come when the photos of you and your children together will be the most precious thing they own.

In addition to receiving printed images, all of my clients do still receive digital copies of their images. This means they can share the images online with their friends and family as well as displaying them in their home.

By printing our images and creating framed wall art, keepsake boxes or portrait albums, we are keeping these cherished images safe for the future.

2. I’m going to print them myself

Are you really though? I am a photographer and have still fallen into this trap. The photos arrive on your computer and they look beautiful. You pop “print and frame enlargements for the wall + make album” on your to-do list. But it’s a long list and full of home and work priorities that always seem more important.

A fellow photographer shared a very similar story with me recently. Her client came back to update her images a few years later and specifically asked for them to be printed this time. "I thought I wanted them digitally" she said, "but I lost the disk before I managed to print them and now I have nothing from that session; I won't make that mistake this time".

You are making an investment of your time and money when you get portraits taken . You will get so much more enjoyment from them if they are printed.

Even if you do manage to print them yourself, you will inevitably end up with a lower quality of image. Your average photography printing outlet does a very poor job of printing professionally edited images and usually applies pre-set colour tones to your images that you do not want. This can result in your images looking flat and lifeless or, even worse, with green tinges to your skin or bright magenta highlights.

I am very particular about printing my images as I want your skin tones to be perfect and for the overall printed image to reflect my artistic vision when I created it. I print every client image myself on my highly sophisticated fine art printer. I use archival, museum grade paper and inks. This means your printed images will look absolutely beautiful and will last to become family heirlooms that your children will be able to give their children.

It will take you a long time to organise the printing and framing of your images and even longer to make an album. I help my clients by giving them dedicated time to think about how they will display their favourite images during the viewing session; and then I take care of everything to do with organising it.

I have a large range of frames and wall art options to suit all tastes and homes. My portrait keepsake boxes are really popular as a way of displaying a selection of images that you can change as often as the mood takes you.

Baby photos in oak frames on a nursery wall

3. We aren’t the kind of people who like having photos of ourselves on the wall

I hear you, it can require a shift in the way you think before you are ready to put a photo of yourself and your family on the wall. However, there is a really important reason why you should - it will boost your child’s self esteem and help them to feel like a loved and valued member of your family.

It's such a simple thing we can do as parents and it has long lasting benefits for our children. Independent research by Geoff Beattie and David Krauss, both respected leaders in the field of psychology, has demonstrated that seeing themselves in a family photograph is a key part of the socialising process and the creation of a child's positive self image.

Seeing their photograph in a prominent location in their home helps children to understand their place in the family and to feel loved and valued.

“Placing a family photo where a child can see it every day, without having to turn on a device, gives the child a sense of reassurance and comfort” - David Krauss (Psychologist, Ohio, USA).

“By displaying photographs of our children at different stages of their lives, we are making a very public statement that we are proud of them - Geoff Beattie (Head of School & Dean of Psychological Sciences, University of Manchester, England).

Family photos on a dining room wall

If having your photo taken isn’t your favourite thing in the world, that’s ok; you aren’t alone. We will talk about what you do and don’t like during our pre-session consultation and I will ensure we capture a great image you love and are proud to display.

Many of my clients prefer images where they aren’t looking at the camera, but are instead interacting with their children, capturing a fun and special moment in time. In contrast, I find grandparents will usually want a more traditional image with the whole family looking - so I aim for a mixture of images to ensure there are options for everyone.

I use great lighting and clever posing to ensure you look your best and many Mums like to take advantage of my hair and make-up options to give them a boost in confidence before they even arrive.

Family photos on a living room wall

So there you have it - five great reasons why you really want printed images
  1. Digital images are easily lost

  2. It can be hard to find the special portraits when we take and collect so many digital images;

  3. With the best of intentions it’s hard to find the time to prioritise printing images, making wall art and albums;

  4. The quality of professionally printed images is vastly superior and will stand the test of time; and

  5. Having printed images on display in your home is really good for your children’s well being and development.

If you would like to know more, I’d love to chat!


bottom of page