Digitals - Yes and No
This may be a controversial blog today but this is an important topic that needs to be discussed a little more.
Back in the day when you went to a photographer, products were the reason you had portraits taken. You'd get a package with prints and wall art. You really wouldn't be able to use the negatives for anything. I remember driving up to the photo huts, dropping off your film rolls, and getting 4x5 prints in a couple of days.
Today it's the opposite where most get portraits taken to post on social media and that's about it. Digitals are the negatives of film and they need to be processed like negatives because digitals are flat and unedited. All digitals need to be edited for exposure, contrast, color, and cropping. Most photographers really loved digitals in the beginning because it was less work since you didn't need a lab or have overhead costs with products, shipping, and sales tax.
It is tough to find clients who don't want digitals, however, here is why I generally do not like to sell digitals unless it is with printed products.
1- They Never Get Printed
I have had so many clients in the past who have purchased digitals and have never printed them. Many say they will get them printed or they haven't had time, but the percentage of them being printed at a later time gets smaller and smaller as time goes on and more events and photos are taken. So those digital images will live on the computer or a flash drive in a box somewhere and be forgotten.
2- Social Media Sharing
Now I'm not saying you shouldn't share them on social media, but the reason I'm not a major fan is that when you do share them, the quality gets worse and if a family member screenshots to print, the quality is really bad especially if it comes from Facebook because the app compresses the image and lowers the quality on the app. Another issue arises when seeing a client post a photo you've taken of them and they have added a filter to the image. Photographers don't like this because it now shows others your work in an altered state and not the look that you produce and have perfected over the years and this can cause issues with potential clients who come with a different look in mind.
3- Printed Somewhere Else
I do print my iPhone photos from different labs (I'll blog about those later) but when it comes to printing my work from my professional camera, I stick to my pro labs for printing. The reason is because I know the quality of work, and the products are archival meaning it will help keep the colors from fading or shifting and make sure your prints will last for a very long time. There are a few occasions that I do print my pro images elsewhere and that is if there is a specific product my lab doesn't have which isn't very often. Sometimes printing at different labs means there can be a big difference in color based on the profile of the print and the printer (I know this is the technical part of photography that gets complicated). There is a big difference between what an image looks like on the screen versus what it looks like printed. This is why many photographers get picky about how their work is shown as it is a reflection of them and the work they produce.
I hope I offered some good insight into this subject and didn't turn you completely off. Let me know if anything stood out to you and what you hadn't considered before when getting portraits taken. I of course still offer digital but my hope is to become a full-service photographer that helps you choose the right products for your home so you can share your beautiful family with others.
Speaking of digitals I am actually offering mini sessions that include a few digitals. You can take a look at the details and book here.