Following on from a personal experience where I felt the photographer was holding pixels to ransom I started pondering this post. I often get asked how much my images are in a digital format and how much they would be on a USB. Whilst previously I’ve always preferred a USB, mainly because it takes the pressure of the client having to choose, the more the business has grown the more I don’t really like it.

Let me explain. Firstly, I only offer two size of files. Social media sized, compressed to make them Facebook friendly and easy to upload and share. These will have a small watermark too, simply because there are a lot of naughty people out there who will steal images. So, if you share them on social media, which is absolutely the idea, you put them out there for whole wide web to see. A little annoying but it’s why I wouldn’t post pictures of other people’s kids without asking.

Holding Pixels to ransom: Go Big

The other size available is full resolution. Not high or medium but full. I struggled to get my head around resolution and would ask ‘but how big can that go?’ So far, I’ve had my images up to A2, but I know they can go bigger. The file size of the images will be large because they contain large amounts of data. This means they are fab for printing but a pain to share or upload to Facebook.

For me I see no value in giving clients in a between size or suggesting they must pay more if they want the extra pixels. If you pay for a digital file it will be a large file. One that you can print big, use a phone case or do whatever you want with them (providing you stick to the rules)

Which brings me on to the rules. I retain the copyright with my images, therefore the ‘license’ you buy when purchasing a file is for personal use. If you want to use them for competition I do ask that you ask me first. Many of these competitions state that by entering you hand over copyright to them. Something that isn’t yours to give away. I’m hoping I make sense.

Holding Pixels to ransom: Pictures are there to be seen

Price wise there is a big difference, a social media image will be just £8, with a discreet watermark. A full resolution image costs £20 per image. I do offer bundles, but I am looking to axe these. However, when you purchase a print product in 2019 the digital file will be included. Currently this isn’t the case and I’ve had a long hard think about how to maximise the value for you guys. Plus, as a photographer I want you to enjoy the works of art you’ve made, to look through and have an album and see your horse, cat or dog. Photos aren’t just for social media and I’ll always do a blog post that you can share.


Surrey Horse Photographer


Otherwise I fear the images will languish sadly on a USB and wouldn’t that be shame?