It's no question that we live in the digital age. With smart technology, we have the world at our fingertips. Touch screens, voice commands and social media are the new normal, so I completely understand when my clients want the digital files from their photography sessions to share with their friends and family online.
But should this mean that printed photographs aren't important?
A discussion with a friend of mine recently got me thinking. She had spent thousands of dollars on her wedding photography. She had a stunning collection of digital images, but no prints.
She uploaded a couple of her favourite images to her Facebook page, made a backup of her collection to her computer and carefully popped the disk into a draw for safe keeping. Fast forward a couple of years, and she was now ready to print her photographs and display them in her new home. She went to find the disk of her images - it had been lost when they moved. She opened the backup folder on her computer and - corrupt. None of the files would open. Just like that, the money that she had spent and more importantly, the memories of her wedding day, were gone. Her photographer only kept images for 12 months and that had long since passed. The only remaining photographs of her wedding were a couple of low resolution Facebook uploads that couldn't be printed much bigger than the palm of her hand.
I photographed her new baby last month and let me tell you, she ordered an album and prints.
I believe wholeheartedly that when you choose to hire a professional photographer you deserve a beautiful, tangible product that compliments your experience. I want to leave you with something that you can look at, hold, touch, feel and smell. I want to create an heirloom for your family that will be cherished for generations to come. A canvas to hang on your wall where your children will walk past it every day. An album that sits on your coffee table that you can enjoy flicking through with your child as they grow. I want to you to walk away from your photography session with portraits of your family that exist in real life.
Not just in the digital world.
Kayleigh McGlynn is a Canberra based family lifestyle photographer.