A New England Wedding Photographer’s “Why” Behind Printing Your Wedding Photos

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Sydney Kerbyson

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February 10, 2021

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Heck to the yeah, friend, you are MARRIED! You flippin’ did the thang, and now you have officially received your wedding gallery. Now what? Okay, I’m going to say this a million times over—print your wedding photos. Seriously, print them before you regret not doing so.

Maybe you’re like me back in the day when I waited to print everything until the very last resort. This was before I realized how big of a mistake it was to wait. Case-and-point, I will never have any of the photos from my time in AmeriCorps NCCC because both my phone and laptop crashed before I thought to print my favorite memories. This is a time in my life that I can and will never get back, and because of technology failing, I will never have photographs to vividly remember the fun, crazy, adoring moments from that time in my life from my perspective. Now, this was also the time before I knew of the “external hard-drive world” and learned how to back up my work. However, if I could go back in time, I would have printed as many photos as my “still-in-college” self could afford.

Ultimately, I think the biggest hurdle couples run into is the number of photos they face printing. On average, my couples receive anywhere between 350 to 800 digital proofs from their wedding or elopement gallery. That is a LOT to handle! Printing photos can feel like a big project to tackle and knowing where to even start can be overwhelming. But, I am here to encourage you to print them anyway. As many as you can—all of them if possible. There is a reason why a printed photograph pulls at the emotional strings. Photographs are family heirlooms. There is never the same level of emotional impact to seeing a milestone moment in your life when it is left to live on your phone or computer.

I want you to treat the digital proofs of your wedding photos like they were each a polaroid: unique, timeless, and irreplaceable. Digital copies are external backups in case anything were to happen to the physical photograph. They are convenient, but it is the physical copy of your first kiss that leaves you feeling the moment all over again. 

Quarterly, I will print photos from my home life. My hon and I make it into a date night—taping, gluing, and writing snippets into our make-shift scrapbook journal. We surround our life photos and adventures with little trinkets we’ve collected along the way. This could be a movie ticket, a dinner receipt, a dried daisy, or anything else precious to our story. I cherish this journal because it is the story of “us”, told. For all the photos that I haven’t gotten to yet, we save them in a shoebox along with our other trinkets. They may not make it to the journal or on the wall immediately, but they are still amusing to look through on a rainy, slow day. So, if you feel like your photos don’t have a home right away, then know it is okay! Print them anyway.

Okay, let’s bring it back to the “what now” piece and jump into how you can print your photos. The easiest way to go about printing is to have your photographer print them for you. If they offer that service (and they most likely do), they will be your dream team. They cannot only compose the photo to any size, but they can also make any necessary minor adjustments needed that you may not have access to. You ultimately have the expert in your ring to tackle an otherwise overwhelming experience (i.e., less stress for you).

So, my couple approaches me asking to print photos. This is the process I follow:

  1. My couple will favorite the images from their gallery that they want to print.
  2. We discuss sizes and specifications. What are they looking for specifically?
    • Everyday Print Set to print as many photos as they possibly can
    • Beautifully framed or unframed prints to curate a gallery wall
    • Stunning layflat wedding album to creatively and beautifully print photos (without the added work)
    • A combination of these options
  3. Once ordered, I first have the prints sent to me to ensure they look good.
  4. If my couples order a handcrafted barn-wood frame, I bring the print(s) to my parent’s farm and build a custom-frame with my dad in his workshop.
  5. The final step is sending the beautiful order to my adoring couple (i.e., GREAT, mini-dance-party-worthy mail day!!).

Every time I print my couple’s photos, I go through Artifact Uprising. This is not because I work for them (though, that would be incredibly neat!). It is because I adore their quality, process, and mission. Artifact Uprising’s products are eco-consciously made (right down to the ink and paper used). They make it easy for me to recommend printing photos to my clients because I already know that doing so will not harm the environment. I will give the friendly heads up—they are on the expensive side. However, the price gets returned in the quality of product and a feeling you better the environment.

Are you thinking it is time to print your photos now? GREAT! I hope this leads to many more printed memories, milestones, and special moments of yours. If you have any questions, or if you found that this post was helpful, then please let me know! You can either leave a comment below or contact me here. In the meantime, happy printing!

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