Perceptive Photographer #20: Value of the contact sheet

Hosted by Daniel j Gregory

July 27, 2015

Episode Number:


It is important to keep yourself organized as a photographer. As I was cleaning up the darkroom, I found a pile of contact sheets from my film shooting. In looking at those contact sheets I remembered how important those sheets were to my photographic process. I have found that there is huge value in having those contact sheets to look at and review images when making editing and printing decisions.

Those sheets allowed me to look at images from the entire shoot, get a sense of the shoot, remove judgement of a image in isolation, see how I framed and experienced the location or subject over time and hopefully pick out the most interesting image. In working in a digital space, I think there is huge benefit from making contact sheets and then looking at those sheets on paper or in a computer program that doesn’t allow you to immediately edit the shot like the grid view would in Lightroom. I have found that keeping organized in editing as distinct from developing makes for a more efficient and effective workflow.


Magnum Contact Sheets
The Contact Sheet
Hollywood Frame by Frame: The Unseen Silver Screen in Contact Sheets, 1951-1997

Books are affiliate links from Amazon

Affiliate Links

This website may use affiliate links. This means when you purchase something through links marked as affiliate links (usually noted by a *), I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. I only recommend products and services that I personally use or have tested.

New Course at KelbyOne

The power of two & working with diptychs

The power of two & working with diptychs

In this week’s podcast, we talk about how editing and selecting images for diptychs or triptychs can make for more interesting work and boost your creativity in approaching your work.

How much does that photograph cost?

How much does that photograph cost?

In this week’s podcast, I share some thoughts on pricing your work and selling your work as art for the wall. Rather than focusing on what to price, I’ll share with you some of the key things to consider when pricing your work and taking those first step

Has digital really changed photography that much?

Has digital really changed photography that much?

Normally when I get asked about film and digital, I talk about the darkroom days being less and less easy to find, changes in media, or how the industry has shifted. I might tell a story about how I used to work versus how I work today. This time I had a very quick response that could have been seen as tongue in cheek, but in the end, it seemed to be an answer that really resonated in the conversation. After all, a story is a story, and light is light.

This week’s podcast talks about my answer to this wonderful question and how I have evolved over time as a photographer to land on what I think is a great way to think about how we all deal with changes in the photographic industry.