I've been thinking lately about just giving my clients their photos on a digital format, will they print the photos out or will they show a few people then throw the disk into a drawer?
It's a digital age now, photos are now shared on social media, they are liked and talked about, then.... ?
The images can also be downloaded from a website holding your personal gallery for a certain amount of time from which you can share and download. A great option, as DVD's will soon be obsolete, but will they get downloaded and printed?
Back in the day, there were no digital files just small back and white prints, later colour prints, from film cameras, we had to print them out to view them and they were all set out in large and small albums and still to this day we can pull them out and talk about the old relatives dating back to the beginning of last century.
Will we still pop a disk into a computer 100 years from now?
I doubt it very much.
As a photographer I must encourage you to enjoy both formats, keep the digital images as back up but you must also have the images printed so they can be enjoyed often and are always available instantly. A print lasts a lifetime and is the most meaningful way of enjoying your image.
Times are changing as we speak, DVDs, CD's and even USB's are becoming obsolete with the influx of the smartphone. Up until recently most homes had a PC or laptop available at home, but now everyone has their own smartphone and can do everything they need to on the phone.
Where are the photo albums? Where is the back up of your family photos?
Everything is now online.... someone else is looking after your images, can we trust they will keep them safe?
Most websites and galleries will last quite a few years, but some will stop being hosted so do some research.
Facebook has been going since February 2004 and doesn't look like slowing down any time soon so we can save a lot of images on there, but they are low quality images, no good for printing and displaying on your wall.
Smartphones will only keep low quality images also no good for printing.
I have sent clients images and they have saved them on their phone and have asked why the images will be no good for print, the phone has resized them so they are phone friendly and now too small for that special canvas to put on your wall or give to Grandma for Christmas.
This link from www.urban75.org has some information on image size for print which may be useful, but to keep your images ready for print I feel you must save them on some form of back up in your home as well as online, the more back up you can have the better off you will be.
I been made aware of another fantastic website that you can physically check your image to see how large you can print, the page has an app you can check exactly how good or bad your image will be for the type of print you want. Check out; www.thecanvasprints.co.uk/image-resolution-for-printing and learn a lot more about pixels per inch and what they mean for your image.
Some of the best online image storage websites I have come across are the following;
You are preserving your history for future generations.
Sandy Jones, photographer and Grandma.