The Power of Imagination in Landscape Photography
Fine art printers cost a lot of money, ink and paper even more. Fine art printers consume tons of ink. It will not be economic before I'll sell 5 prints a month or more. It is much cheaper and easier to print over a lab. But now, I found a reason anyway to buy a fine art printer. Let's have a look why :)
#1 Printing over a lab
I started with printing maybe how most did: When I was happy with a photograph, I ordered a print over a lab. This worked quite fantastic for me and as I started to sell prints, I did the same: I ordered prints over a lab for my clients.
#2 I trusted to soft proofing
Over the years I learnt how I have to prepare a photograph for printing, I learnt how to softproof exactly for the paper I wanted to use. Softproofing means, that I get the final paper simulated on my screen, so that I know, what I have to change, to get out the print like it looks on my screen.
But what I totally ignored, or what I simply not saw is: A screen will always stay a screen and paper is paper. A soft proofed image on a screen anyway looks a bit different to the final print. The colours are maybe correct, through using a calibrated monitor, but the tonality and the contrasts were always a bit different. I got used to that and I had already experience how I should change my tonality, to get out fantastic prints, which appeared close to that what I developed for the screen before.
A printer, paper and ink are expensive, you need time to get used to print by yourself. There were also no printers on the market I was really happy with. Why should anyone be so stupid to buy an own printer?
#3 Why I finally bought an own printer
As I got an injury at my knee around two months ago, I went through my photographs on my Chrome book, to think about how I could improve my photography - but I didn't find anything I would want to change. As the display was reflecting due to sunshine in my garden, I finally exchanged my Chrome book by a print of the same image I looked already with lightroom, where I found nothing to change. And suddenly I saw things I was not happy about - at the print, of the same image.
So I realized, that my printing process was not perfect. I invested lots of time to finetune my images for the screen, but I didn't do a finetuning in my printing process. This is quite not possible if you print over a lab.
As there appeared also a new printer on the market recently, what seemed to have solved all the issues of the previous models, I was not happy with, I decided to buy an own printer and to include finetuning also into my printing process.
What I do now is - I softproof, print, have a look at the print, what I want to have changed, softproof again, print again - and again and again, as long it takes, that the print finally gets perfect.
#5 Which printer did I buy?
I decided for the Epson SC-P900. Epson is known for safing ink, the design is fantastic, because it doesn't take a lot of place, althought it is possible to print A2+ size fine art prints with it and it seems that Epson has fixed all the issues, which the previous models had.
Check out my gear, which I use for my landscape photography:
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