In today’s internet driven world, we see photos shared everywhere on our ubiquitous digital devices. Viewing or sharing an image is always only an arms’ length away. When our photos are so easily accessible it’s hard to find a good reason to print them. We’ll give you five.
1. Get something real out of a virtual world
When your photos sit in your phone or computer they might as well rot there. How many times do you just collect photos on your device without ever looking at them again? They exist there in the form of bytes and bits, only a hard drive failure or accidental delete key away from oblivion. Once you get a digital image printed, you just created something tangible out of thin air. That moment in time that existed only in the digital mind of your device can now be touched and held in your hands. And, that may be the best way to keep those memories around as stated in reason number 2.
2. Guaranteed longevity
According to internet pioneer, Vint Cerf, the ever changing landscape of computing can render file formats to become unreadable in the future. Some day a jpg might not be accessible because the format becomes obsolete and we don’t have devices that recognize it. It would be like having your treasured memories only available on Advantix film. Yeah, remember that film format? Your images on the cloud are no safer. They might remain there as long as companies like Google, Apple and Amazon are still around. But even that’s not guaranteed in the coming decades. When we look at our family’s old albums and shoeboxes full of prints we know prints are proven to last.
3. Show your true vision
You spent a tremendous amount of effort and patience to get that amazing shot. The color is sublime, the exposure is perfect and the composition is impeccable. What if someone tweaked the colors, blew out the highlights and cropped off part of your masterpiece? That’s what happens when it gets shared online or printed by someone else without your supervision. All screens and displays are different. Some are very inaccurate and some are just terrible. Your image can look very different on someone else’s screen. If you give your image file to a friend or, even worse, a client to print on their own, they might take it to a pharmacy, warehouse or some other subpar place to get it printed. Then they’ll judge your work by the horrible print they got there. When you take the time to see your work through by taking it to a print lab that you trust, you control the final product and deliver your true vision, not some compromised facsimile of it.
4. Become a better photographer
Prints show you things that you might’ve missed on your screen, especially small ones. The larger you print, the more you’ll be able to magnify technical issues and details. The feedback is much more accurate and useful than viewing it on Instagram. Getting proof prints are a great economical way to review your shoot. You can then edit and refine your work. So next time, you’ll be ready to get the shot right without resorting to Photoshop.
5. It’s fulfilling
There’s something deeply satisfying about seeing your carefully crafted image on a beautiful print. It’s the physical manifestation of your creativity and effort. Once you get a great print, it’s addictive and so much fun! Unlike pixels on your device, prints are actually tangible pieces of art that you can gift to family, sell to clients and decorate your walls.
So pull out that camera and create something amazing, but don’t forget the benefits of printing your photos. It’ll make your experience that much better.