being half of a photographer

by julie posted May 9, 2007

Printing. Ugh, the thought of it sends shivers down my spine.

I had this really horrible, sneaking, creeping suspicion that I was somehow cheating. That my pictures, although looking fairly decent on the web at 600 pixels wide, I didn’t think could stand up to being printed. All I could see was posterisation, lack of sharpness, noise, and messed up colours. When I had some printed previously through a commercial lab, the photoshopping just screamed out at me, and they were way, way too dark – the result of working with an uncalibrated monitor.

Then recently, Neil printed out a couple of my shots on some gorgeous Epson Heavyweight Matte paper. He took my cr2 (Canon RAW format) files and processed them to match the jpg’s I had up on flickr. I am astounded! They don’t look a thing like the previous attempts. It could be because these days I stay away from levels, dodging, burning and heavily saturated colour – but it certainly has given me that bit of ‘oomph’ to make the effort to get them printed properly. I think the matte finish just takes them a step further away from the bad experiences I’ve had with commercial prints and towards my own little bits of magic.

It really is a fantastic feeling, when you can hold your picture in your hand, look at it in different light, or hold it up close or far away. I feel like a whole photographer!

Now, I just have to prepare for People’s Photography in August…

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