Chapter 8. Printing


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Many photographers, myself included, believe you can’t really evaluate an image until you see it on paper. Prints reveal the characteristics of photographs in much the same way as face-to-face conversations reveal the characteristics of people. And by studying the subtleties in a print, you’ll often find ways to improve your photograph.

Yes, it’s true—a print has personality. Digital images tend to have a predictable feel when displayed with the steady glow of a backlit computer monitor. Prints, on the other hand, can be made on different types of paper and viewed under a variety of lighting conditions. An image may look one way when printed on a cool, glossy surface, and then surprise you when rendered on a warm matt stock. These variables add both to the excitement of working with this medium, and sometimes, the frustration too.

People like looking at prints, but not everyone likes making them. And if you’ve endured more frustration than joy when trying to produce an enlargement, you many fall into this category too. To be quite honest, Photoshop itself has been part of the problem. The print dialog box can be an intimating place if you’re not confident about the settings to use.

I think this brief chapter will change that. I’m going to show you the basics for making beautiful prints without wasting ink, paper, or your ...

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