I never used to print the photos that I take. I used to upload all my public work to Flickr and all my personal work to Google Photos. Albums for me were always software albums created on Flickr/Google photos.

Last month, I printed an album (around 100 photos), and kept it in a physical album. Interestingly, we started looking at the images more frequently than we used to when they were only online. I also liked the standard size in which photos are seen. Otherwise, each device has a different screen size and we used to see the online albums differently on each device.

This leads me to the question, what kind of print is likely to last a long time without any damage?


3 Answers 3


...what kind of print do you do so that it can be kept for longer time without any damage?

I generally don't worry too much about archival quality or longevity of my prints; I'm cheap and use a dye-based inkjet printer, rather than a pigment-based one. But since I do the prints on my own printer on photo paper that I can easily purchase, I figure I can always just print out a replacement if the one I hang on my wall fades or gets damaged. My digital file is my original (just like my negatives are).

Pigment-based inks, however, are supposed to have better longevity, and of course, getting good archival-quality paper that is low in acid content helps towards making an archival-quality print. You also want low-acid ink, frames, adhesives [hinging tape/tissue], and mat and mounting boards if you use them. But most importantly, how you hang/display/store the prints will go a long way towards extending the print life. I've heard of folks using UV-filtering glass on frames if they're really paranoid about prints fading, but it's probably most important to simply make sure they're not hung/displayed in direct sunlight.

As with any paper conservancy, storing prints away from light in a cool, dry place in archival storage containers of some kind (acid-free cardboard, mylar sleeves, etc.) will keep nearly anything from fading for a very long time.


I do not print ALL my photos (there are simply too many) but I do try to make a selection approximately once a year, and print those. Sometimes as loose photos, though recently I started printing them as complete albums which is great! I see the following advantages

  • The display of colors, the sharpness, etc. does not depend on the screen you are using to view the photo. Furthermore, sometimes well-printed photo looks better on paper than on a screen.
  • It forces me to select my favourite photos (as the number of photos I want to print is limited). This is nice for going over them again myself (you only see your favourite photos) and for showing others, without boring them.

I imagine the last point can also be achieved by creating an online photo album, but I have no experience with this myself.


Yes i do. I do not print them myself, I prefer to have a photo book printed. It is much nicer then the old school photo album. If you are printing, then archival quality ink and paper ( and album ) would add to the life of your photo album.

I have only my best work printed unless it really has an emotional quality i want to re-live and enjoy. I also print to hang on the wall, but i have limited wall space.

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