So, photologue now have a photoblog ! This is new to us so what to blog ? Obviously photography is going to be high on the agenda ! When we think about getting the business up and running, the first hurdle that had to be overcome (from a photography point of view, don’t get me started on website development and SEO !) was ensuring that the print the client get’s very closely resembles the image that they have looked at on the website. The physical side of this is easily handled, both our DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex – I will blog on camera jargon at some later date) cameras are a crop sensor of a ratio 1:1.5, what this means to me and you is that the image the camera captures is 1.5 times longer than it is wide. If you think of a standard widescreen TV, the ratio is 16:9, or 1:1.7 so not too far away from our cameras. When it comes to printing, the easiest way to ensure that the whole image you are seeing on the screen makes it to the printed sheet is to choose an image size that matches the crop ratio, hence for standard online sales the featured products are images of this ration (9x6inch, 12x8inch etc).
Of course, any size print can be ordered, but then it is down to the client to select the desired crop (select the part of the original image that they want to be in there print).
The next part was a bigger headache but with a simple final solution – colour calibration. If you google “colour calibration” you instantly get 1,930,000 results, such is the complexity and confusion caused by this issue, the array of equipment on the market to eradicate this issue and the forum discussions that debate this endlessly. In essence, we are trying to ensure that the colour of the print you receive matches the colour of the image you viewed on your screen. The standard method for professional photographers is to use a (rather expensive) gadget that has a camera looking at your screen then displays a series of calibrated images and reads the monitors output, then you can adjust until the gadget is happy. This then gives you a file called a colour profile that you can send with your files to the print lab and all being well your prints look exactly as they are on your screen (yippee). You can probably see something lacking with this approach – the client does not have the expensive gadget and have there monitor calibrated, so the issue the photographer had has now merely been transferred to our clients. Even now, many photography websites get around this with a disclaimer “our monitors are colour calibrated, if yours are not you may see a colour variation between your screen and your prints”, or words to that effect.
We were not happy to take that approach and after much soul searching and lab printing we came up with the following solution. We ask clients to initially print one small image, once you receive said image, compare the printed image to the image you see on the screen. Adjust the colour and contrast on the screen until the colour closely matches the colour on the print. Then all prints you order WILL closely match the colours you are seeing on the screen. A cheap and accurate solution to a very old problem, or as we say …
photologue, a fresh approach to photography 🙂
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