Are most of your photos hiding on your smartphone? Here are five reasons why now is a good time to print your favourite family photos.
1. So you can enjoy your favourite photos every day
These are the photos that give you that tingling feeling. The ones that take you back to a moment or remind you of someone special. The photos above are just a small selection of the ones I have around the house. They’re photos of the people I love, are close to me or are no longer with us. Simple photos that take me back to a moment and set off a chain reaction when I look at them.
If you’ve got thousands of photos, try and whittle them down to ones you really love. Just spend an hour or so going through them. Choose 50 favourites and then cut them down to 20. Then choose your top 10, make a few edits if you need to and get them printed.
2. Build your children’s self-esteem
Children love seeing photos of themselves and research has shown that having family photos around your home, can help develop their self-esteem. Being surrounded by photos of themselves with their family reinforces a sense of self which helps to build security and confidence.
Beyond the headline there’s a surprising amount of research that backs this up. The psychologist Judy Weisser has researched the subject extensively. In her book Phototherapy Techniques Judy Writes…
“Photographs are footprints of our minds, mirrors of our lives, reflections from our hearts, frozen memories we can hold in silent stillness in our hands – forever, if we wish”.
Digital photos can have the same effect, but having a print on display has immediacy. Prints are always visible, they stimulate a reaction and create a conversation.
You can’t turn the clock back, but you can document those special connections as your family grows. You’ll be surprised how often a photo kick starts a conversation and before you know it you’re chatting about a time and a place.
3. Use your prints to decorate your home
A great place to start for inspiration is Pintrest. You’ll be rewarded with endless ideas to showcase your prints from cheap frames to high end finishes and bespoke design ideas you can create yourself.
The Architectural Digest have also written a great article with a few creative ideas to get you thinking about photo displays in your home.
Go for a display that matches the style and decor of your home and think about how you can rotate some of your photos to keep it looking fresh.
4. Keep your precious photos safe
Computers crash and phones seem to have a habit of falling out of back pockets or down the toilet, along with all your favourite photos, gone forever. Every now and then print off your favourites, so you know they’re safe and enjoy them every day.
At the same time think about a back-up plan for your digital photos – there are so many great options available now. You can set them up and they’ll back up in the background.
5. Nothing beats holding a photo in your hand or viewing a print on display
Instagram images are disposable – view, swipe, repeat. We’re bombarded with images everywhere we go! It’s estimated that 1.2 trillion photos were taken in 2018 – that’s a lot of hard drive space. I wonder how many of the 1.2 trillion are looked at more than once!
I recently went to see the Don McCullin exhibition at Tate Britain. Don McCullin’s photos are powerful. Many were taken during his time as a press photographer around the world. His images aren’t for the feint hearted, but his commentary is compassionate and compelling.
His photographs are taken with a film camera, mainly in black and white and printed large. They draw you in and capture such a breadth of human emotions, though his skill at playing with light and capturing the moment.
I’m not suggesting your family photos will create the same reaction, but you will view prints of your family photos in a different way. They will pull you in and take you back to a place, when you least expect it.
One of my favourite photographers on You Tube is Sean Tucker. He recently posted a video titled “The Legacy of Your Photography” where he talks to his grandad and they look at his photo prints taken during his time in the navy. Sean articulates so clearly the power of a printed photograph and how it can form part of your legacy.
So, have I persuaded you to trawl through the depths of your hard drive and print a few images. I hope so!
Not everyone has the time, desire or inclination to photograph their family. If you’re not a photographer and you’d like me to help you create memories of your family, or you have a special occasion coming up get in touch and tell me about your plans. I mainly photograph families throughout Bath, Wiltshire, Bristol and the Cotswolds, but I’ll travel further afield too, so don’t let that hold you back!
There’s no perfect time for family photos. Your children are constantly changing, so don’t hold off – now is a great time to create some wonderful prints of your family.