No, you don’t have to use professional photos to order photo save the dates or photo wedding invitations. Many personal cameras and smart phones have the ability to take decent quality photos. Although professional photography ensures that you will get excellent quality and shouldn’t have any trouble printing your photos, it is still possible to get great results with your own devices.
When taking your own photos or using existing photos on wedding stationery, it’s possible you will run into issues with low resolution. If you’re getting an error when trying to upload an image, that error is due to inadequate resolution. It’s important to note that the resolution of your image is determined by the size of the image. If your image turns up an error, it didn’t pass the size and/or resolution requirements we suggest to print your photo at maximum quality. To understand the relationship between size and resolution, we recommend reading Image Resolution Explained found at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.
The resolution and size of your image can be found with photo software like Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. If you don’t have access to photo software, find your image file on a desktop computer and view the file info. If the size shows up in pixels, divide each number by 300 and that will give you the inches. For example, a 3200 x 2400 pixel image can be divided by 300 to get 10.7” x 8”. The size of photo you need for a save the date or wedding invitation depends on the design but you’re pretty safe with any image larger than 4” x 6”. Check out this forum at Photo Stack Exchange for more info on using formulas.
You can take your chances with a low-resolution image but we don’t recommend it for something as important as save the dates and wedding invitations. However, we completely understand not wanting to spend the money on professional photography. Try a few of your own photos to see if they upload safely. If not, find a friend with a good camera to ensure you get some great shots worthy of printing on your wedding stationery.