How I deliver my images and why i don’t deliver RAW files!
When I get an inquiry from a couple one of the first questions asked almost every time is how I deliver my images. Do I give a CD, do I give RAW files, do I deliver with a USB? All of these questions are important, and so I want to break down for you how I deliver my images and why I choose to do so this way.
How I deliver my images:
I deliver all of my images via an online gallery through the website Pixieset. You can check it out here! I LOVE using Pixieset because it allows me to upload all of a client’s images into a gallery where they can then view, share, and download their images to their hearts content.
For weddings I organize the images into folders for each part of the day which makes for easy browsing. Clients are given the option to have their galleries password protected, and are given a PIN to download their images directly to their desktop (no wait time and guaranteed safe delivery of files!). I provide my clients with the original file size, high res file size (ideal for printing), and a web file size (optimum for online/social media posting).
I find this method of delivery to be very user friendly, simple, and quick. I don’t want my couples to wait for their images any longer than they have to, which is why delivering them via an online gallery versus through the mail is so ideal!
Do I deliver RAW files?
No, I do not deliver RAW files and I want to explain why. RAW files are what the images look like straight out of camera (SOOC). They’re unedited, most likely a little crooked, and not the final product that you’ve paid for. I would never use a RAW file to market myself because they don’t accurately show my style/quality of my work. Here are a few examples of the unedited RAW files (left), and the final image that I delivered to my client (right).
I shoot digital photography, and with digital cameras it is very easy for the detail in the highlights of an image to get lost. If I were shooting film I would have the opposite problem. In order to retain the details within the highlights (think the light and white areas like the bride’s dress, wedding rings, white flowers, etc.), I underexpose my images in the camera. I know I can recover the shadows, but recovering highlights would be difficult. This means that my photos SOOC almost always need to have exposure adjustments, not because I’m inexperienced, but because I know I need to underexpose in order to save those precious highlight details.
I wish I could say that I have my balance under control, but the reality is that I’m a very clumsy person (think tripping over nothing on a regular basis). This means that while I try my best to take level photos, a lot of the time I have to go into Lightroom and do some minor adjustments to make sure the horizon line is perfectly straight. I’m a wobbly person trying to take level photos, and sometimes I need a little help from Lightroom to get it just right (see above images for example).
I might shoot digital, but I prefer the film look and I try my best to emulate that look. RAW files look NOTHING like film photography, so one of the first things I do while processing my files is apply a preset that adjusts the file to a more film-like look.
Delivering RAW files would be like giving you a burger with a cold, uncooked beef patty. Doesn’t sound very appetizing does it? I want to give you my BEST work, and trust me when I say the RAW files are NOT my best work. They’re just one of the mid steps on my way to giving you the best images possible.
I hope this post has cleared up a lot of questions for you! My desire is to give all of my clients the best possible images in the most simple and quick way there is! No long waits or cold, uncooked burgers for you!