How to Choose What Images You Make Into Prints
- 8 Mistakes Photographers Make When Printing Their Photos
- Avoid These Mistakes When Buying and Displaying Canvas Prints
I know that for some photographers that actually being out taking photos - the thrill of the hunt if you will - is what gets them out of bed in the morning.
For other photographers I know, it seems like they're more excited about testing out new gear.
For me, though, the best part of photography is seeing my images turned into prints so I can enjoy them (and other people can enjoy them) when they come to my home.
In the digital age, getting images printed is easier than ever. But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't take care when selecting what images you turn into prints.
Thin the Herd of Photos
If you're like me, you take a ton of photos. And all those photos end up on thumb drives, hard drives, cloud accounts, and so forth.
That means that when you want to find a photo to print, you've got hundreds, perhaps thousands of images to sift through first.
To make it easier on yourself, each time you dump images off your memory card, put the best ones into a separate folder titled "For Printing" or something of the sort.
Now, the point here isn't to put every single photo that you like into the folder. Otherwise, you'll just end up having the same problem of sifting through a million images.
Instead, be super selective, and try to keep the folder limited to a few dozen images. Then, once you have one printed, delete it from the folder (as long as you have it saved elsewhere first!).
The less time you spend searching through your archives of images, the more time you'll have to enjoy the ones you get printed.
Think About Where You'll Hang the Image
Before you order a print, you need to consider where you'd like to hang the image first.
This requires a little bit of spatial thinking, but by doing so you can think about how the features of the image will work with the features of the space in which it will hang.
For example, the image above is of a group of canvas prints I have of my son that I got from CanvasHQ.
You'll notice that the colors of each image are vibrant and varied while the wall on which they hang is a simple white.
The color of the wall was crucial because if it was a bright color or if it had crazy wallpaper, these photos wouldn't look nearly as good. In fact, this display might have looked downright awful!
In addition to thinking about the colors, textures, and patterns of the wall space, you also need to think about how much space you actually have to hang your printed image.
For example, in the room shown above, the wall is quite large, so a large print is warranted.
But just because you have a huge wall space doesn't mean you need to have an equally huge print.
Notice how in this situation, the print is big but doesn't fill up the space between the lamps.
That puts some negative space around the print to help it stand out and makes the image that much more impactful.
Tailor the Image to the Space
A subtle, yet impactful tip when getting images printed is to tailor the image to the space in which it will hang.
By that, I mean if you have a light, airy, sun-filled room, consider images that reflect that sunny, airy vibe. Furthermore, when editing the photos in post-processing, manipulate the image to better reflect the qualities of the space.
Again, if it's a light, bright room, increase the brightness of the image, boost the saturation and vibrance of the colors, and minimize shadows.
In the image above, we can see that there's good lighting in the room, so the addition of an image that has bright highlights and nice contrast looks perfect.
In this image, you can see the value of using your room's decor as a guideline for the way your print looks.
The abundance of white in the room is perfect for a black and white image.
Also note how the print is perfectly sized for the space - it mimics the shape and size of the chest of drawers to give this vignette excellent visual balance.
It's Not All About the Image Itself, Though
Of course, you can have the most breathtaking image that's ready to print, but if you pick the wrong printing company, you could still end up with a total dud.
Just as the digital age has made photography so much more easy and accessible, the internet age has given rise to all kinds of photo printers. Unfortunately, many of them produce terrible products.
That's why I was so glad to find CanvasHQ, the company I mentioned earlier.
These guys put out incredible products that have gorgeous, true colors, impeccable construction, and a solid guarantee to back it all up.
In fact, they offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on all their prints, so if it's not up to snuff, you'll either get a refund, or they'll remake the print for free. On top of that, all their prints have a lifetime guarantee that they won't bubble, crack, or fade.
If that doesn't tell you about the quality of their prints, maybe this will convince you...
CanvasHQ uses color-calibrated machines to print their canvases, that way the prints you get are true to your artistic vision. As another failsafe, CanvasHQ gives you fast, free digital proofs so you're sure the images look just how you like them before you place your order.
Additionally, their canvases are just superbly built.
When I got my first CanvasHQ print in the mail, I was astonished at the attention to detail that's paid to the frame and the mounting hardware.
They use kiln-dried fir for their canvas frames and stretcher bars, so you get a frame that's straight, true, and strong.
I know I'm gushing a little bit here, but that's simply because I've actually ordered tons of prints from these guys and have been utterly impressed with the products they put out.
What's more, they're just great people, always willing and able to answer any questions I have about my order.
It's that kind of dedication to making quality products and giving customers the best possible experience that makes them the best canvas printing company out there!
With that said, start organizing your images, think about where you'll hang your prints, and tailor your images for the space in which you'll display them. And once you've done that, head over to CanvasHQ to complete the process!