Many of my clients have questions about what happens next once the photos they’ve hired me to take are taken. I’ve put this short post together to answer the main questions and help anyone hiring me as a photographer understand how they can access their photos once the shooting part of the contract is complete:
1. Client review of proofs: Within a brief delay of usually no more than 48 hrs, your web-resolution photos will be online in a password protected gallery. I will share these images with you by sending you a link to invite you to what is called a “lightbox” (which in the old days of photography was actually a box illuminated from below with bright even white light, allow the photographer to select images from negatives for development). You will be able to review your images online, rate the ones you like and / or remove the ones you don’t like. Once you are done, send me an email and I will simply log into your lightbox and be able to see your selections.
2. How many photos can I choose? As a rule of thumb, I normally request clients aim for a 10-1 ratio. So for every 100 shots, choose 10 that really stand out. This is not a hard and fast rule as some clients ask for fewer images to be edited and others ask for many more. It is really just a guideline but it helps speed up the process of you receiving your final, reviewed and edited as necessary images.
3. How many photos do you take during an event? The volume of images generated varies per contract, but on average you will receive approximately 100-115 images per hour of shooting service. So for a typical corporate event you can expect to have submitted to you about 300-500 images. A wedding normally runs for many more hours in which case you can expect to receive approximately 1200 to 2000 images, depending on the length of the service contract.
4. What does editing a photo involve? In all cases, a client selected image will be reviewed by your photographer. A light edit would involve adjustments to the levels in the image (making it brighter or darker), perhaps some white and colour balancing, applying a black and white, sepia or antique filter, and cropping. This process may take just a few moments. A more intensive edit involving detailed work on skin smoothing, colour adjustments, editing out unwanted elements of an image will take longer, anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes depending on what is required.
5. How long will it take before I get my final edited images back? You can expect a delay of at least one week and up to 1 month, depending on the volume of edits required and the time of year (summer and fall are very busy). Again, you can help speed up the process by being selective in your choices of images you wanted edited. Quicker turnarounds are always possible for time-dependent images (i.e. events needing media-ready files at the end of the event).
6. How will I receive my final edited images? Your photographer will upload your edited files to a new gallery and you will be sent a link with a password that will give you access to the images and using the “Batch Download” link found in the top menu, you will be able to download all your images as a zip file to your computer. The time needed to download a full gallery depends on the number of images involved and your internet connection speed.
7. What is the difference between web resolution and high resolution files? Web resolution images are optimized for the web. In other words, they are light (usually no more than a few hundred kilobytes) with a resolution of 72 dpi (dots per inch). This is all the web can “see” so more than that is overkill and will greatly slow down viewing online. High resolution images, by contrast, are usually much heavier (anywhere from 7 to 25 or more megabytes) and are set to 300 dpi (dots per inch) which conforms or exceeds the higher resolution needs of printers, allowing you to print your images. Images can be further sized to specific dimensions (for example 8 x 12 inches).
8. What if I want my images on a disk or flashdrive? Most modern computers no longer come with a disk drive, and even USB ports are steadily evolving into newer and faster connections. By far the most convenient and affordable method for image file transfers is via a download as described in this post. It is also the ecological choice as it saves time, expense and waste of materials, and it is the default delivery method for your images. If, however, you require for whatever reason, your images to be delivered on a physical disk or a flash card (portable USB stick) it is optional and for an additional fee, available to you.
9. What happens if I need help? Don’t worry – Just call or email and your photographer will gladly walk you through any trouble you may be having.