Lately I’ve been taking advantage of Shutterfly codes and sales and stocked up on a bunch of prints after not printing any for quite a while. When I go some time without printing photos, it is always really exciting when I get my prints in the mail. I love having the photos in my hand. Some of them don’t look as good “in person” and others are just so much greater in person. I realize that printing photos is going out of style. I really think that most people my age do not print photos at all. When people find out I scrapbook they usually wonder how I find the time and a lot of people mention that they don’t even print photos.
For me, there is something really special about printed photos and about putting them somewhere and documenting what they are about and looking at them again. I don’t print every photo. I don’t print most of them. In the digital age you can take hundreds of photos at an event or on a trip, so I doubt anyone prints most of the photos they take. There are so many ways to share photos. Sometimes Facebook seems like a live scrapbook. People share photos and type up what they are, organize them how they want, etc. People are constantly documenting their lives now through blogs, social media, photo sites, and more. They just don’t think of it that way because a lot of it seems temporary or fleeting.
This is part of why I like to print photos, photo books, and why I scrapbook. I’m not always thinking about passing photos on for generations to come, but that is sometimes part of it. Who knows how technology will change. Who knows what could happen to the websites where I back up my photos. And if I don’t write about the photos, the people that see them in the future most likely won’t have any context for what they mean.
But the main reason I print the photos and make photo books or scrapbooks is purely for myself and the satisfaction I get. I love to take the photos, to then hold them in my hands, to put the photos together how I like them, to record the stories that go along with them, to find just the right papers and all the other stuff that goes with them. I love to remember, to see the people that are special to me, to remember the places I’ve traveled to, to see how my life has changed and how it’s the same, and to see what God has done in my life and how prayers have been answered.
I’m not saying everyone should scrapbook, but I do recommend taking the time to print some photos to put in frames in your home, or to make a photo book of a special event or trip. Having the photos in your hands really is different than looking at them on a screen. Maybe no one else will appreciate them like you do now, but maybe someday someone will. You never know!
Here are some other posts I read about printing photos that motivated me to share my thoughts: