The Elephant in the Room :: Raw Files

"I just want access to the images from the most important day in my life! I enjoy playing around with Photoshop and Lightroom. I don't understand why it is too much to ask for the raw files. Furthermore, what if there is an image that the photographer doesn’t care for but is important to me or us?..."

This is a question that pops up from time to time. It is a really good question, too! At Poppy & Sage Photography, we do not provide raw files as part of our delivery. Here is our why:

  • This is in line with the stated terms and conditions in our contract. It is our business policy. We only ever show our best work.

  • Delivering a complete product is important to us. It is our job; it is what you, as the client, are paying us to do. The preparation (meeting, emailing & planning) is key. The shooting (time, experience & equipment) is key. The culling is key. The colour correction is key. In particular, our editing style is essential to our brand. Every aspect of the process is just as crucial to the final product as each other.

  • The raw file ultimately become detritus once the final image comes into existence. Handing over raw files is akin to a few analogies. It would be a bit like a restaurant serving a meal and including all the egg shells & vegetable scraps as part of the final presentation. A dressmaker creating your wedding gown and including all the fabric, pins and pattern. A carpenter building a deck and leaving every scrap of wood and nail behind. An artist painting a commissioned piece and including all the initial attempts, brushes and leftover paint. Or, perhaps more similarly, it is like a speechwriter drafting a script but leaving it to someone else to edit it and release the final version on behalf of the original speechwriter.

  • We totally understand the concern that we might not choose an image that means the world to you. We take a ton of images on any given wedding day. Of that ton, a good amount can be accounted for in multiples, typically with only nanoseconds between them. This is especially pertinent because we shoot together; we collate all files and choose the best. Some of the images are visual exposure tests. If we followed anyone around for a day (or someone followed us), we can absolutely guarantee unflattering images - blinking, awkward moments, and so on. We strive to give you beautiful & memorable images from your day that you will hopefully love so much that you will go and tell your family & friends. We value quality over quantity. We also work from a questionnaire that lists shots important to you. There is no way we would withhold an image that is suitable and, in particular, is from your shot list. Finally, we deliver an industry standard of 50-75 images per hour of shooting.

However, if you have any questions or would like to clarify anything, we are just a message away. Feel free to contact us anytime.