I often volunteer to take photos at events sponsored by various schools, non-profits, and community organizations. Growing up, my family didn’t have much, so I don’t have many photos of my childhood. Though many people now have cameras built into their phones, I find that few actually take professional-quality pictures. I typically share low-resolution, web-quality photos from my volunteer work at no cost for all to enjoy. For non-profits, I usually share high-resolution downloads -- also at no cost.
I often take hundreds or even thousands of photos at an event, so the post production work can take eight to twenty hours or more. For example, the Hillsdale High School Track and Field and Battle at Dawn slide shows each took about 30-40 hours to shoot and produce. I’m happy to volunteer, but it can be a big investment of time.
For those so inclined, I do accept donations to help pay for my pro camera gear — I’ve spent over $15,000 for equipment that enables me to teach photography and take quality photos. My cameras and lenses endure wear and tear. And sadly, I do occasionally lose items or have my gear damaged at events.
If you like one of the photos I’ve taken and would a high-quality print or download, please consider purchasing some prints (or the rights to download a photo or two). You’ll get a very nice print produced by a professional photo lab (or high-resolution download) and the (humble) profits I earn will help pay for my gear and my time. Thank you!
Comparing Free vs. Purchased Photos
|Criteria||Free Download||Paid Projects (Purchased Prints & Downloads)|
|Quality||72 DPI: Suitable for displays (smartphones, tablets, social media, web pages, email, etc.)||300 DPI: Suitable for printing|
|Resolution||Typically less than 2 megapixels||Typically 20 to 46 megapixels!|
|Print Lab||Consumer grade (hit or miss)||Pro grade photo lab (much better than prints from Costco or Walgreens)|
|Watermark||My photography logo in the corner||No watermarks, just a clean photo|
|Cost||None, nada, free||Very reasonable (typically < $4 for 4x6, < $10 for 8x10)|
|Karma||Neither good nor bad||Great, with thanks from your friendly neighborhood photographer!|