Contact Sheets- Do you need them?

November 28, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

Contact Sheets- Do you Need them?





If you are like many photographers, you have a folder of images on your computer, phone, or tablet for inspiration.  They may be of different resolutions, sizes, orientations, colors covering a wide range of subjects. There are several ways to organize these, including a variety of on-line and software options one of which include contact sheets.

Contact sheets have been around for a very long time from the early film days. Contact sheets allowed film based photographers to print negative strips out on a single sheet to help decide in part which images were worthy of enlargements.

In the digital world, contact sheets can provide a valuable resource some of which include:

  • Organizing a series of concept sample images within a binder 
  • Presenting your images to a client in the field in the studio as a quick reminder to poses for a concept
  • A reference to props, lighting and wardrobe which may be stored along with certain props
  • Organizing various images quickly without the need of keyword searches

Although several options for preparing contact sheets are possible, one of the quickest methods is through the Adobe Bridge.









  1. Navigate to the folder in which you have your images stored (essentials)
  2. Select the Output Menu. and you will see a series of your images in a film strip
  3. You have several choices of templates. For this example, I choose a 5x8 template.  You will also have other options such as page size, background color and even file names.
  4. Drag and drop any images that you wish onto the contact sheet.

Once you have your images on the contact sheet, choose "Export to PDF" at the bottom of the page.




You now have a very portable reference which can even be stuck in your pocket if you choose once printed. At a location, this is one less piece of gear the photographer needs to drag along. Using this method one does not have to 'import' files into a gallery which can be a time saver and well as save disk space. When working with a client, the photographer does not have to 'wake up' a computer or tablet or tie up a resource such as a phone.  

Give this a shot and see what you think!



No comments posted.

January (8) February (8) March (9) April (8) May (8) June (5) July (1) August September October November December
January (3) February (1) March April May June July August September October November December