Printed vs Digital: Are Printed Photos Worth It?

In Blog Circle, Family by Amy TedrowLeave a Comment

Do you have fond memories of spending time with loved ones, pouring over countless numbers of photo albums and watching their eyes light up as they step back in to the scene of that photo? This topic is one that is very near and dear to my heart.

My Grandma was very special to me. She inspired me to be the best possible version of myself and she loved photography. I remember as a young girl, spending evenings with her and looking through old family albums. Grandma was born in 1919 and saw a lot of things in her lifetime. Every time she would share the story behind the photo she had taken, her eyes would light up! 

One of the things I loved about my Grandma’s older albums is that she had hand-written the year and who was in the photo on the page. This turned out to be a blessing as she struggled with Dementia and Alzheimer’s in her later years.

Grandma with her Kodak Brownie Camera in 1942

I am so thankful that my Grandparents captured their memories and created albums for us to look at through the years. Without those memories, much of my Grandparent’s memories would be lost and I would have nothing to hand down to my children.

I didn’t come to appreciate my Grandma’s love of photography and capturing memories until I discovered my love for photography. Since then, I have been trying to capture memories for my family of our travels and special milestones.  One of the coolest things for me was looking for photos to use for this post and finding a photo of a location my Grandma took in 1947 and contrasting it to the same location I photographed in 2018. What a special connection to be given through a simple photograph!


It is hard to imagine anyone would want to sift through folder structures on my external hard drive to reminisce but looking through albums together would be so much more special. For this reason, it is important to physically print your digital files. If you are staring down a folder of folders called “Photos to Organize” (🙃 Guilty as Charged), here are a few steps you can take to organize your digital files to prepare them for print:

  1. Start with the newest year and work backwards.
  2. Create an organized file structure on an external hard drive that is easy to remember. (Remember, always have a backup!)
  3. Organize your images (for example Year > Month > Activity) and tag them for faster searching.
  4. Separate out the photos to be printed.
  5. Decide the method for printing. (Do you want 4×6 prints to add to a photo album, can you create a photo book, etc.)
  6. MOST IMPORTANTLY! If you are having a professional photographer take family portraits, always purchase the physical prints. You will never regret having fun memories hanging on your walls to represent the love in your family!

Printing family photos and photo albums help us to document the memories that make up our beautiful lives. When we look at the smiles on our children’s faces, remember the bounciness of our new puppy, document the purchase of a first home, or celebrate major milestones in our loved one’s lives, having physical and tangible products to look at is all worth it and will last well beyond our lifetime!

This post is a part of a photography blog circle featuring photographers specializing in a variety of niches. To see what the next photographer is sharing for the weekly theme, “Printed,” check out April Ohl of April Ohl Photography, Senior photography made simple. Continue to click the link at the end of each post in the blog circle until you eventually find your way back here.

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