Photo Printing: Why you should go pro.

So you just downloaded your gallery full of beautiful images of sweet moments captured with your family.  You’re feeling the joy of seeing yourself and your family through my lens, and you know you want to get some photos printed to hang in your home, or to share with family.  

But where’s the best place to get those images printed?

If you’re like me, you probably want to spend as little money as possible (I’ll admit it, I’m cheap!), so you shop around for what seems like the best value, and the easiest process.  You probably land somewhere like Shutterfly, or Walmart–familiar names that sound easy.  

You have tons of options when it comes to printing your photos, but trust me, not all options are equal. There is a huge difference between the cheapest option, and the professional-grade printers, and for good reason–the professional print shops are experts in creating beautiful, quality, heirloom prints that will last you a lifetime.  

You just spent time, energy, and money on your photos, and the preparation that went into them. They are basically fine-art images, so why would you opt for the cheapest place to get them printed?  It’s like building a home with only the cheapest materials–it probably isn’t going to hold up well over time, and you probably aren’t going to like how it turns out.  

Sometimes, the upgrades are totally worth it.

I fell victim to this recently.  I tried to cut a corner (see above, on my thriftiness!) and print our family photo from Costco Photo, just before Costco ended this service and partnered with Shutterfly.  I was so disappointed by the result.  It was plain awful.  

My original image.
The print from (now Shutterfly). It’s a picture of a picture, but you can tell the colors are off. It looks over exposed and greenish.

You can see from the photo above, the colors are WAY off from the original image, also above.  I made sure to ‘uncheck’ the ‘autocorrect color’ option, so I know they didn’t alter the colors, but this is just how it came out of their printer.  And it’s so bad! 

So I tried again.  I took my own advice, something I should have just done from the beginning because I KNOW BETTER, and I printed from my own professional print lab.  And the difference is astounding (see below)!

Smooth Matte Fine Art print from my pro lab, ProDPI. Again, this is a picture of a picture, but I think you can see the difference.
Side-by-side. Left is the print from ProDPI, Right is the print from Costco.

Think about it this way.  Places like Costco, or Walmart, or Walgreens are NOT photo specialists.  They sell a wide variety of goods, for pretty low prices, and they are all about quantity, not necessarily quality, especially when it comes to photos.

So if you are looking for high-quality prints that will withstand the test of time, that could be something you pass along to your grandchildren, then go where the pros go

My professional photo lab, ProDPI, is outstanding.  I’ve ordered many print formats from them, both for myself, and for my clients, and I’ve never been disappointed. I like to choose the ‘Fine Art’ Prints, on the Smooth Matte paper.  It’s thick paper, and silky smooth.  It’s matte finish, so there is no shine to it at all, and the images are crisp, clear, and dreamy.  The prints feel solid in your hand, it’s cardstock weight, and it feels like something that will last forever. 

So, don’t settle for a cheap print!

Head back to your gallery, and click on “Print Shop” and get started

I know it’s more expensive than Walmart, but your money really will go so much further.  And rather than going to a huge corporation, your money will stay local, helping a small, woman-owned business.  

So do what the pros do (or should have done the first time!).  Print those photos directly from your photographer! 

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