What Size Do I Choose?? ( Yardley Portrait Photographer, Bucks County PA )

Today I want to address something that I experience with each and every Client. The dreaded question, "What Size do you want?". Usually this question elicits responses akin to asking how many Lamas there are on Earth. There are a lot of shrugs, some educated guesses and then the few Lama experts who know the exact answer. Most of my regular clients have become Lama experts at this point and know who wants what and what will go on their walls. Today I'm going to address the "Shruggers" and "Educated Guessers". The best advice I can give to someone is to decide where they want to display their portraits first, possibly even before the session is booked. This is a very important part of the process that often gets skipped, people know that they want portraits but don't know what to do with them after the fact. This is usually what spurs the question of "Can we just get portraits on a cd?" but unfortunately CD's don't look very nice on the wall and they also fail or go bad. A printed portrait is the best way to preserve your memories even in this digital age.

Ok, so now you know what wall or room you want to display your pictures in now how on Earth do you decide on sizes?  You would be amazed at how many people are  surprised by how small a 16x20 really is when I show them. 16x20 sounds quite large to most folks but in reality it is about the size of or smaller than a standard carry on rolling bag.  Ok that kind of still sound big, but lets look at it on a wall.

Newtown Family Photographer Wall Display


As you can see on this wall the 16x20 looks like a postage stamp, but when choosing size it is all relative to the wall and what else is on that wall. There is no one size fits all when it comes to decorating with pictures. As much as I advocate for large portraits on the wall, even I have 5x7's displayed on my walls at home. 5x7's are generally considered a table top size, because hanging them on the wall leaves the viewer at a loss because so much detail is lost in viewing far away. My 5x7's are part of a larger collage display on a small wall in my home (Which we will tackle in another blog post).

Any-who... Back to the task at hand. Wall displays being all relative. What do I mean by that? Well lets look at an example.

Newtown Family Photographer Wall Display

As you can see the same wall with a 24x36  instead of the 16x20 looks much more balanced and pleasing to the eye, also the detail is much easier to see. Now if this wall was smaller or had other items on it we may want to cut it down a little or if we want to hang more than just one image on the wall. You can create some really great wall displays with multiple images and sizes that will really knock people's socks off. I do caution against doing too much, there is a fine line between a beautiful artistic image gallery and that wall behind grandma's couch with every 5x7, she has ever received, of each of her 12 grandchildren. In other words it can get out of hand pretty quickly. Of course wall galleries are a topic for another blog post but just for argument's sake lets check one out:

Newtown Family Photographer Wall Display

Well that is all I have for now, I'll be elaborating more on Wall Displays and how to keep image galleries balanced in the next few weeks.