Recently on TWIP’s (This Week In Photoshop) The Fix I spoke with Jan Kabili about the power of printing your photographs. Then I demonstrated how to get the best results possible with Softproofing & Proofing practices. Watch this and you’re sure to get better prints in less time with less waste.

Find more useful videos on TWIP’s The Fix here.

Read more with my free Color Management and Printing resources.

View more in my DVD series R/Evolution.

Learn more in my digital photography and digital printing workshops.

proofunderglass
It’s an excellent idea to evaluate final proofs under glass (or plexiglass). This is particularly true if you’re using very thick or low grade glass. Often, when see under glass the print appears ever so slightly darker, lower contrast, and sometimes greener. There’s no ideal glass or plexiglass to evaluate proofs with. Use whatever the print will be viewed under. What you want to be able to do is adjust subsequent proofs so they look ideal in the final viewing state of the print, which is rarely bare.

Find out more with my free Lessons.
View more on my DVDs Fine Art Digital Printing and Fine Art Workflow.
Learn more in my Workshops.

Print Proofs To See Undisplayable Colors

November 14, 2008 | Comments Off on Print Proofs To See Undisplayable Colors |

You softproof (constrain a monitor with an ICC profile) to see what colors are out of gamut of an ink and paper combination before you print. You proof (print) to see colors out of gamut of the monitor.

What? Yes! Today’s inksets exceed the gamut of of even the widest gamut monitors, in certain colors.

This graph shows ColorMatch (equivalent to most CRTs and LCDs), Adobe RGB 1998 (higher end LCDs), and Epson Ultrachrome HDR Ink on Epson Exhibition Fiber Paper. The new printers with the latest substrates can print more saturated yellows and oranges than even the best monitors can display. And, they can also print more saturated blues and greens than average LCDs can display. Evolution in printers is forcing an evolution in monitors.

Which monitor do I recommend? Check out my previous post here.

Check out my DVD 6 Simple Steps to Good Color Management.
Check out my DVD The Art of Proofing.

See me demonstrate this and more during the Epson Print Academy.
Learn these techniques in my workshops.

Printing – Humidity

September 16, 2008 | Leave a Comment |


Extreme humidity can impact print quality. This is particularly true for but not exclusive to matte papers, which are more absorbent.

We printed for my Annual Exhibit in high humidity. The paper had absorbed a lot of moisture and so there was substantially more dot gain. The prints were coming out substantially darker and we were having trouble maintaining shadow detail. It’s made me want to store all of my paper in a climate controlled environment (using a dehumidifier or air conditioner). Or, climate control my entire studio. Rather than reprofiling for an atmospheric condition that changes unpredictably, we compensated with proofing. We lightened the files selectively before printing. With a little testing, we came up with standard adjustments that could be used on multiple images, with customized shadow masks for individual compositions. It pays to think about the impact of humidity on your printing. Control humidity when you can. Compensate for it when you can’t. You get better prints.

What do you do to compensate for excessive dot gain due to environment or overinking? Comment here.

Check out my Printing downloads here.

Check out my DVD The Art of Proofing here.

Find out about my The Fine Digital Print Workshop Series here.

Printing – Proofing

September 15, 2008 | 2 Comments |


Proofing is an essential part of making the finest prints possible.

While color management and softproofing get you 90% of the way there, there are all kinds of things you still need to check in hardcopy – materials, ink limit, sharpening to name a few. Every time I print an image, I create a BAT (a final proof) that I archive for future reference. The next time I print the same image the BAT tells me how I got the best results the last time it was printed. That then becomes a starting point for future improvements. Combine advancing technology (printers, ink, substrates) and good color management / proofing practices and you’ll find your print quality will constantly evolve.

Do you proof? What kinds of things do you routinely proof?

Check out my DVD 6 Simple Steps to Good Color Management here.

Check out my DVD The Art of Proofing here.

Check out my Proofing downloads here.

Find out about my digital printing workshop series The Fine Digital Print here.

Scale changes ideal viewing distance.

To see a 4×5” print you have to get close to it. You can’t see anything but its shape and color from the end of a long hall. To see a 6×10’ print in its entirety you have to stand well away from it. If you stand very close to it, you won’t be able to see the whole image, much less anything else.

The rule of thumb for determining ideal viewing distance is to stand at three times a print’s diagonal dimension. This tends to place the entire image well within a viewer’s field of vision in such a way that overall general detail can be resolved at once, minimizing panning and scanning.
Of course, zooming happens. Both artists and viewers tend to view works of art from many different distances; examining details closely and evaluating a total composition distantly. Viewing distance changes perceived scale. Viewing distance subtly changes the quality of the viewing experience. So viewers tend to compare a variety experiences, dynamically forming a total impression of a work of art.

What do you think the ideal viewing distance for prints is? Comment here!

Check out my Printing downloads here.

Check out my DVD The Art of Proofing here.

Find out about my The Fine Digital Print Workshop Series here.


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