Where to Print Photos, My Recommendations

  • Dec 23, 2021

Recommendations For Where to Print Photos

“Give me recommendations for where to print photos!”, is one of the top requests I get once a gallery of images is delivered. So, let’s get to it!  Click the title to go to the corresponding site.

1. Emerald Rue’s Professional Artwork

My top recommendation is to order images right from your online gallery. It’s as easy as adding to the cart and choosing sizes. Emerald Rue offers prints, archival wall portraits, and more, created at professional labs with the highest quality papers and inks.

What’s more, be on the lookout for an email during the first days of your gallery to receive an exclusive 25% discount. Watch for sales throughout the year. Don’t fret, an email notification is sent!  See this page for detailed information on how to order images.

Family poses in front of lake. Demonstration image for where to print photos near me.

2. Mpix

Mpix is an online photo lab that offers premium prints and quality artwork products. The professional side of their business, Mpix Pro, is available only to pro-photographers. The same great quality translates to the consumer line of prints and products. Mpix is my top pick to order your prints and products, outside of the professional artwork offered by Emerald Rue.

3. Costco Photo Center

Costco’s color and quality are the best consumer-grade print I’ve found. The store used to have in house printing for convenient pick-up but all services went online in late 2020. Additionally, Costco offers a variety of products and wall decor, from canvas to books to calendars. The catch? You must be a Costco member to order.

4. Fast Foto (Near Minneapolis-St Paul!)

If you love the option of picking your artwork up in person, look no further than Fast Foto. Located in Bloomington, MN, Fast Foto sells photographic prints, greeting cards, posters, and more. Final artwork can be sent in the mail as well.

Here’s where it gets interesting. Fast Foto can restore old, faded photos so you don’t lose cherished memories. That VHS tape of Christmas from 1992? They can create digital copies!

What’s more, Fast Foto develops analog film! Dust that 35mm camera off, because Fast Foto will sell you film, then develop it right in-house. Let the nostalgia roll!

5. Smallwoods

Smallwoods is a company with a lovely story. First, pop over to their About page, then browse. Smallwoods offers a variety of wood and canvas products. An image printed on wood and framed makes a beautiful wall display that you’ll be staring at for years to come! Here’s a video my client, Courtney, sent after she ordered from Smallwoods.

Tips for Ordering:

1. Pay attention to the crop.

Most photographers deliver images in a 2:3 aspect ratio (4×6).  Popular sizes for ordering prints include 5:7 ratio (5×7) and 4:5 ratio (8×10) which means that some of your image will be cropped off.

Most sites will allow you to shift the image within the crop frame so nothing is cut off (like people’s heads!). See below for a handy chart and images to illustrate aspect ratio.

Aspect Ratio Image for where to print photos
Aspect ratio portrayed on image

2. Just say no to auto-color and filters.

Images delivered from a professional photographer have been skillfully edited and color corrected to portray a specific style. Even if you didn’t realize it, you likely hired your photographer for that very style.

The last thing you’d want to do is alter it by adding a filter or auto-correcting. Labs often have an option to auto-correct the color and tone of an image when ordering. Be sure this option is off so the style of the photographers edit is what you see when it’s printed.

The same goes for social media. Slapping a filter over your professional image is like a slap in the face to your photographer. Just don’t do it!

3. An 8×10″ is NOT a wall portrait! 

Take a quick look at the wall above your couch. Lot’s a space, right? An 8×10″ print in a frame will be swallowed up by all the empty wall. Try 16×20″ or larger if hanging prints on the wall.

A second option if you’d like to use 8×10″ prints on the wall is to create a gallery wall by mixing and matching sizes. See the examples below.

Think outside the box. Sometimes the best images to hang on the wall are not the ones where everyone is looking and smiling.

Four framed prints hang over a couch.
Mix 8x10" framed prints with larger sizes to fill the wall.
Many frames of a family hang over a hutch.
Try mixing many sizes to create a gallery wall!

4. Think outside the box.

Sometimes, the best images to hang on your wall are not the looking-smiling ones. Consider artwork that’s not traditional, such as metal prints or loose canvas that hangs from a dowel. Check out Pinterest for inspiration.

The main goal is to print those images! Whether it’s 5×7’s in an album, a photo book or wall artwork, don’t let your professional photos die as jpgs!

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