Print Calibrations

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So at some time or another one will want to print their photographs and for many a simple print from most anywhere will do. Heck even my wife has had a few of my photographs made into a print from a family event and sent them out to others for their scrap books. Printed from Walmart they came out fine and if I had to be perfectly honest better than expected but if I want the best print I can get I go with another more professional printing service. I don’t care who you choose to make your prints there will be an issue of what you see on your screen and what you see from the physical item.

Now printing is important because you want others to see what you see and while technology helps us share more of our work more easily a print lets others see it the way it was meant to be seen. I say this because everything that displays a digital image will always show whats on its screen in a different light, literally. No two computer monitors, phones, tables, television sets and more are ever set the same. People will either use it however it came from the factory or make adjustments to how they feel it should be especially with TV sets having modes for movies, video games and more built into them. With a print on the other hand you can show off your image the way you feel it is at its best and as an artist that is part of what we strive to do. While things can be left to interpretations we want our viewers to see the colors, highlights and shadows the way we see them. It’s not always possible what with some people being colorblind of which I am not making a joke, I know a few colorblind people and others whose vision over all is not the best. Still, we want to show our work the way we see it as best as possible. We can’t control how others see it on their digital end, at least not within the realms of full control but we can regulate how they see it face to face and this is how I accomplish that task.

The first thing I do is set aside a small collection of photos. In my case I have ten of these and they range from colorful and vibrant to a bit bland. From simple black and whites with good toning to high contrast with pure whites and the blackest blacks. Of these ten images two are set aside for charts with one being a gradient chart in black and white and the other in color. All of these combine so that I can make adjustments to my display so that I know when I send out images to be printed they will look the same when physically in my hands as they do on my monitor. It’s really that simple for me. I use good lighting to make sure they are shown as they should be and spend the time to get everything looking the same. Every so often I check back with them making sure everything is still good and periodically I get them reprinted to make sure that my print company of choice hasn’t changed anything on their end that might skew the end results from a printing run.

So that’s it! Its low tech but for me it works and helps keep my monitor in check as well as my printing service. Sure, one doesn’t have to go this far as many places make fine prints without getting complicated but I think if you want to keep the integrity of what you are trying to express then it’s worth doing a little work to make sure that artistic vision is given the best opportunity to shine.

Also, if you want to know who I use for my prints, it’s Meridian Professional Imaging. No promo here as I’m not getting paid or any kickbacks, I just simply enjoy the service and product I get. Go with whoever you like, it doesn’t matter to me personally. Just make sure you get your monitor and prints to match so you can better show yourself off.

And as for printing at home, that’s nice and all but unless you have some serious money for some serious equipment it will never match what a professional printer can do for you.

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Social Media & My Photography + A Bonus!

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I thought I’d take the weekend to branch out more into social media. Some say it’s good, others say it’s bad. All I know is I’m not pushing the aspect of it down throats so here are the links if it seems interesting enough.

Tumblr: http://richardscottphoto.tumblr.com
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/R_S_Photo
Twitter: https://twitter.com/R_S_Photo
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/richardscottphoto

I’ve also recently taken the above picture and liked it enough to use on the main website. If that’s something you’d like to look at too here that link.

http://www.decaystudio.com

I guess not a normal post but I’m not sure what is and besides, this is a blog of what I’m doing with photography and I guess visual art so with that said here’s something else I recently did. It’s the beginning of a series I call “Chasing Clouds” where I time-lapse the sky above me and bring out the dance the clouds do but we are unable to see.

 

Gum Bichromate: Just a Mention

It’s been a long day already of moving Heathers belongings but despite the five hour trip the clouds in the sky were amazing and still are. The weather over all is just amazing and feels really nice outside. I’m going to take some photos mostly of the clouds to later use for some gum bichromate prints. I think the way I like to using this form of printing and its high contrast look should lends itself to amazing cloud prints.

I guess this would be a good transition into talking about gum bichromate but I just do not have the time to do that. Already getting late into the day and I have much more to do along with taking some cloud photos but needless to say it has become one of my most loved ways of printing photographs. It’s so much more than sending a photo off the printers or even to one’s own home printer but a truly hand on process which combined with my film work makes for a truly analog means of photography. I mean modern technology is great but the need to get the picture on film right the first time and then to make a print from it that digital manipulation is not going to fix if a mistake is made to me just feels more like an art form. It’s nice to correct ones mistakes and computers are a great addition but to do everything hands on and be skilled at it just seems more true to what one would call art. Even if I use a digital photograph and make a negative from that the print is still hands on and each print is always different in various ways so each becomes their own thing being perfectly unique. I mean I have to prep my paper, I then have to carefully mix my chemicals to then paint onto the paper to make a light sensitive emulsion and even the painting of the chemicals has to be done in such a way as to make a perfect surface or it’s all worthless. Then the paper is now exposed and I have to carefully wash the paper to make the image come out. With every step if not done with care lends itself to another opportunity to ruin the print making the invested time wasted. Sure I could send my photo off to be professionally printed with each print a perfect replica of the last but what’s the fun in that?

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