When I was a kid I looked through our family photo albums ALL. THE. TIME. So much so that if there were a photo my mom was looking for, she would ask me and I would quickly tell her, “Oh, that’s in the red album.” I knew them well. Cover to cover. And it wasn’t just at my own home, I would pull out photo albums at other family members homes. If they had a stack of albums, I would sit and flip through their family vacations, while the rest of the kids played outside.
But my favorite album to look through was one at my neighbor’s house. It was of their daughter’s wedding. I was 6 years old when she got married and was her flower girl. So I probably enjoyed it even more since I was in it, let’s be honest. Nonetheless, I loved looking through those photos of her getting married at the Langham in Pasadena. I loved all of those ladies in their lovely flower girl dresses. I loved all the photos of the bride and her gorgeous dress and old fashioned hat and parasol (hey, it was the 80’s). The bridesmaids wore vintage looking dresses as well and carried fans decorated with flowers. Again…. 80’s. But beautiful.
There were photos of me crying during the ceremony (yes, I did that even then), the bride being led down the flight of stairs so regally by her father, and the couple riding off to the reception in an antique car. I remember every detail. I even remember that the wallpaper in the room where we got ready was and green and white lattice print with flowers. Wow.
I remember ever detail because of that wedding album.
When I got married, I didn’t order an album from our photographer. I just wanted the digital files so that I could print them myself and, since I am a wedding photographer myself, I would design my own album. Yeah… I think you know where this is going. Two years later… still no album. At first I just didn’t have time. I was busy working on everyone else’s photos and getting used to being married. Then it was a money thing. Albums are expensive, plain and simple, and that expense was just not a priority. I made my mom an album for Christmas that year, and I’ve found myself opening that album and flipping through it to re-live my wedding day whenever I’m at their house. My mom has an album of my wedding and I don’t.
I’ve noticed that over the past several years, less and less of my wedding clients have, like me, opted not to purchase an album because it doesn’t fit into the budget. Most people just say that they want the disc of images. I hope that some of them have made albums for themselves. But I have a feeling that most of them, like me, have a couple of photos printed out and the rest of them sit on the disc I gave them. We all say that we are going to do it ourselves, but here’s exactly how many photos I have framed from my wedding.
One. And I LOVE our wedding photos. ALL of them! It’s just a shame.
So, learn from my mistake! Here are a few reasons to consider ordering an album from your photographer (even if it’s not me!)
Flipping through all 800-1000 images on your ipad or on facebook is a little overwhelming. But one or two photos framed on your shelf don’t even begin to tell the story of one of the most important days of your life. An album is something you will flip through time and time again with friends and family. Looking at them on the ipad isn’t quite the same. And you probably wouldn’t frame a photo of your bouquet but I’m telling you what… I would definitely have it in my album! Mine was gorgeous!…… and now it’s dead. 🙂
I want my kids to be able to see the story of when mommy and daddy got married. Right now, that doesn’t exist. To be honest, since digital took over, I don’t have one album of a trip I’ve taken or my friends and I doing silly things. Pre-digital, I do. I hope to be able to sit with my little one and show him/her the story of our day, and to have them be able to pass it on to their kids one day. And laugh at how out of style everything looks, of course.
Up until now I’ve been providing clients their images on disc. Now Apple is designing many of their computers without disc drives. I’m switching to USB drives, but when are those going to be obsolete? An actual printed, archival album in timeless.
As much as we say we will, most people don’t ever get to it. It takes a lot of time and energy to look through all of those photos and pick which ones you want. Let your photographer do it. You hired a professional to photograph your day, why not have them professionally print and bind your story.
I will get an album, gosh darn it! It’s just a matter of time (isn’t it always). But since we’ve got a little one on the way, I’m feeling like it’s more important than ever. I want to have a keepsake from our day to help me remember one of the most important days of my life.
I want that for you too.