Television and local stores have begun advertising Christmas again. That was fast. Weren’t those same advertisers just pushing camping and barbecue stuff on us? Don’t get me wrong. I like Christmas and all the festive celebration that comes with it, but it always sneaks up on me just the same.
This is a great time for photographers that want an excuse to give friends and relatives photographs. I always give photographs this time of year. Sure that could mean framed prints and I have some in mind as gifts, but what I am writing about is Christmas cards.
For those satisfied with mass produced generic Christmas cards, there are stacks and stacks being offered at stores, but for photographers, as I just wrote, it’s a perfect excuse to give people photographs. And personally, I want people to see and enjoy my photography. Even if it’s only as a 5X7 card, that’s better than having my pictures left languishing in some hard-drive.
When my wife and I go to some location with the intention of photography we always return with our memory cards loaded. That’s not much different from any other photographer. Then we return home, delete a bunch, work on some and print one or two, and then store everything in folders on backup hard-drives. For many that’s where it stops. Not for us.
I have written before that my wife and I always make a new monthly calendar. Alternating months. I get December this year. I also make cards for all occasions, like birthday’s, Valentine’s, Mother’s day, etc., from those photography trips.
Right now we are going through our many image files from this year’s photographs selecting those we want for Christmas cards. I prefer a vertical format, but sometimes a horizontal picture also works and I choose that also.
I print up lots of different images and place all sorts of greetings on them. It is rare that we give the same picture to more than one person. And not all the cards say Merry Christmas. To me, it doesn’t matter. Happy Holidays, Seasons greetings, Have fun, A good New Year, and anything else I think fits a particular picture. Sometimes I use bits of songs or quotes I have found instead of the words, Merry Christmas.
What matters is the picture and even that might be a manipulation of the original. What is important to me is that those I give a card to get something unique. And I will say that, unlike a framed print, I really don’t care what they do with the card I sent. I really hope people like what I give them, of course. However, if it gets thrown out with the gift-wrap after the holidays it doesn’t matter either, they got to see a photograph taken by my wife, Linda, or myself, and that’s what’s important.
So, to all the photographer’s out there I’ll say make your own cards this year. I print our cards on a sheet of 8×10 photo paper, fold it so we can write inside, and then cut it to fit inside an envelope. However, it’s easy to make a card gluing a photo to card stock or construction paper, or get a print made and write something festive on the back. This weekend I’m booked to photograph two young female friends and their horses, and I know they will use their photographs for their Christmas greetings.
My point is, stop hiding all those great photographs. Just showing some picture on your iphone isn’t enough. Print it, make a card, put it in an envelope, and send it to friends and relative this year. And if you realize on Christmas day that you’ve missed someone (or everyone) you can send your Christmas photo card electronically and instantly.
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My website is at www.enmanscamera.com