Everyone from the amateur photographer using his or her smartphone to the professional with DSLR equipment has felt the change in technology throughout the years. Technology now allows everyone to store thousands of photos on a hard drive and quickly look through them on a screen. While there are advantages to this level of storage and speed, you shouldn’t forget about the benefits of printing photos.
Improve Editing Skills
It’s impossible to be a good photographer without learning photo editing. While photo editing will always be done on a computer, the fruits of your labor can only be fully appreciated with a printed photo.
When viewing a photo on a screen, you’ll notice a few differences in perception. Your mind will overlook errors because they are easy to fix, details are often obscured because the image is smaller and has lower resolution than a printed photo and the monitor can play tricks on you.
You can’t change a printed photo. It commands certain gravity because you can’t put it in an editing program and change the color balance and other elements. This ensures that you see the photo of a final product, which helps you scan every corner for fixable errors.
Give Photos Life
Computers give you the advantage of scanning through images at lightning speed, but as Paul Kowalski says in this interview, photography should make you slow down and enjoy the details. You waited hours for the right lighting, snapped the shutter endlessly to capture that one perfect photo. It would be a waste letting that image sit on a hard drive, just to be scanned for less than a second before moving to the next image.
Printing that photo allows it to breathe and stand on its own. This lets you glorify all of that time and show that it was truly worth the effort.
Increase Perceived Value
Do you want to quickly and cheaply increase your perceived value to potential clients? Just print your best photos. Anyone can upload their photos to a website, blog or social media outlet, but those images are typically looked at briefly before the person moves on.
Photos are supposed to represent a perfect moment in time, frozen so that people can marvel at the detail and colors. This is muddled with the speed of computers as people rarely look at images for very long.
Printing your photos and placing them around the office, or anywhere else they will be seen, shows people that you are serious about your craft and lets them enjoy the photo the way it was meant to be enjoyed.
Getting paid for your creative passion is great, and there’s nothing better than doing something simple and getting more money from it. Your photos have value. People love looking at them because they are beautiful, inspiring and make people feel what emotions you are trying to convey.
Printing your photos gives you something to sell. You can make small prints for cards, large prints for posters, a book displaying your best pieces and so much more.
Show Your Greatness
Computers show images at low resolutions. The details are harder to make out and the colors are usually a little off, but the images tend to look good. It’s easy to edit out mistakes because of the low resolution, but overall these images rarely make a huge impact.
Great photographers print their photos at high resolutions. Mistakes are no longer hidden, but this allows the details to shine. Others may hide behind low resolution and editing tricks online, but a printed photo is completely open. Every nook and cranny can be seen, allowing your image to truly stand on its own merits.
Saving your photo online or on a hard drive is perfectly fine, but you should also print your best work. From making you a better editor and photographer to enhancing your perceived value to clients, printed works still hold obvious value both to photographers and viewers.