Why You Don't Want The RAW Files Of Your Wedding Photos

Posted by Admin on February 22nd 2018

If you’re reading wedding blogs like this about hiring a wedding photographer, you may see someone mention that getting the “RAW” files is something you should be interested in having in your package. But what exactly are RAW files and why would you need them? There are some cases where wedding photographers include RAW files, but those instances are very limited. Here’s why you probably don't want the RAW files of your wedding photos:

RAW files are the unedited files, straight from the camera that are not manipulated. To even be able to view the photos, you would have to invest in software that could open the photos, and then have the knowledge of how to manipulate the photos, thousands of them.

RAW files should not be confused with high resolution, or “high-res” files. Those are the full size images that are the result after your photographer edits and corrects the RAW files. High-res files can be viewed on any computer without special software.

Wedding photographers spend more hours in post-production editing your photos than they do photographing on your wedding day. Each image that leaves their studio should look professional and representative of their brand.

Giving you the RAW files is like an artist giving you a painting that is half finished and then providing you with a paintbrush and paints!

Editing RAW files not only takes hours of time, but it also takes computers with enough RAM and storage to process these huge files, as well as calibrated screens to make sure the color balance is correct on each image. Your photos were taken in many different lighting conditions, and a photographer needs to make sure that your white dress is white in every photo!

To give you an idea of the complexity and time required by a professional to edit RAW image files, here is a great article by ShootDotEdit entitled How to Edit Wedding Photos, ShootDotEdit's Expert Tips

When you pay for photography, doesn’t it make sense that you are paying for a final product and not unedited photos?

If you decide you do want your RAW files, then make sure you speak to your photographer before you sign the contract to find out if they are willing to make them available. Some photographers will sell them but be aware that they will likely come at a premium cost.

ISPWP is the premier wedding photographer directory with qualified professional wedding photographers from around the world. Find one in your area by checking out our listings or browse some of our contest winners for some wedding inspiration photos!

Photo by Roger Chiang, Taichung, Taiwan wedding photographer

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