From time to time I receive enquiries from people who are interested in my work but not the products and they all say the same thing;
‘I love your work but I just want the digital files’
Where possible, I ask them why and the usual answer is;
‘I don’t know what I want yet’
Fair enough. But, do we ever know what we really want? They’re just prints, it’s not that complicated.
Sometimes we don’t know what we want until we find it.
Let’s go shopping
It’s just like when we go shopping for a new dress. We don’t know the exact dress we want to buy but, we look through various shops, check out the prices and try a few on to see how they look. We do this until we find the dress of our dreams – the one!
The same goes for photography packages. Check out a few photographers, see what they’re offering, check out their fees, go through all their work, have a look at their products and keep looking until you fine the one.
However, this above method only works if you genuinely don’t know what you want to do with your photographs.
Sometimes, I simply don’t believe it when people say that they don’t know what they want. Giving this answer is easy to give and it can hide the real truth.
What’s your real reason?
‘It’ll be cheaper’
You may think that by just getting the digital files the photographer’s fee is going to be cheaper.
No, it’s not.
Whether you purchase a print package or not, I still put in the same amount of time and effort into your photographs;
• I still rock up to your shoot
• I still organize your session and spend time with your family
• If it’s a newborn session, I still spend hours working with your baby and using all my specialised equipment and props to get the images you love
• I still have to spend time editing and retouching the images; and
• I still have to do the same research and education into newborns and photography to get the job done and done well.
No, it’s definitely not cheaper to get just the digital files. It’s an easy assumption to make. I would make it too.
Purchasing a print package may seem expensive now but, when you’re looking through your photos in 5, 10, 20 years time, what you spend today won’t matter then.
These beautiful memories will last forever.
‘I’m unable to hang anything on my walls’
This is a very common situation. This mainly happens when you’re renting and you’re not allowed to put hooks in the wall to hang your photographs. This breaks my heart.
If someone told me that I couldn’t hang anything on my walls, I would cry. I love photos and I love art – it’s a huge part of my life.
My Image Portfolios are created so you can have beautifully matted prints that you can simply put straight into frames and my 5×7 inch prints can sit anywhere; a desk, mantelpiece, dresser, table, anywhere.
You can still display your photos openly and proudly without putting holes into your walls.
Or, the prints come in a beautiful box that you can leave on your coffee table. Guests will still be able to enjoy them, just like an album.
And, I of course provide albums to combat this issue.
‘I want to do the printing myself’
So many people say this but very few actually get around to doing this. Life gets in the way and we put it off. Eventually we forget about it completely.
Also, you may think that by doing the printing yourself that you’re going to save money (than if I printed the photos for you) and you’d be right. It is cheaper. But, you get what you pay for. If you go to your local Kmart, Officeworks or Harvey Norman, you’ll get really cheap prints. But, you’ll also receive really cheap prints.
All of my work is printed at a professional print lab.
Printing professional photographs is a very delicate process that takes time, education and training. Only a professional print lab can print photographs correctly and to such a high standard (A lot of photographers do their own printing and they’re amazing too!).
Now, you might be thinking;
‘Why can’t you tell us where these print labs are and we’ll just go there ourselves?
Well, it’s not that easy, most local print labs only sell and print for professional photographers. The lab that I use doesn’t sell to the public.
Also, you’ve just read above all the work that I put into your photographs. Printing yourself, at one of the cheap stores, will ruin all of that work.
Finally, my name is attached to those photos and bad printing reflects badly on my business.
Our photos become part of our history
One of my fondest memories growing up was being at my Omah and Opah’s house. In their study would be all their photo albums and I would constantly pull them out and look at all the photos, over and over.
My Omah would sit with me and she’d tell me about the people in the pictures, what their names are and how they’re part of my family.
Most of the photos were very old and worn. They’re mainly black and white prints and some Polaroid’s were in there too. But that just added character to the albums!
I’ll never forget the faces of the people in the photos; my great grandfather, standing in the garden, wearing his Scottish Tartan from the McMillan Clan, with his always-loyal Lassie Collie – McDougal. My mother as teenager, standing with her two sisters all wearing matching dresses that were bright pink and orange! And my favourite – my grandparents wedding photos.
Just imagine your grandchildren/great-grandchildren going through your photos. Looking at all the faces, learning all the names and making connections with people who have passed. You cannot put a price on that.
Let me print your photos. Computers crash, CD’s scratch, USB’s go missing. Everything we know today about technology will be made redundant in a decade or two.
But, your prints will last a lifetime.