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Author Topic: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?  (Read 547 times)

datack

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What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« on: March 20, 2019, 04:44:40 am »

Hi everyone,

I'm fairly new to printing, but I've got my workflow down for printing and churned out a few nice prints that I'm happy with.
I'm now at the stage where I've bought a few different packs of sample paper so I can have a play and work out what types I like best.
I have created a composite image using a few different types (a black and white with a lot of tonal range, a bright sunny outdoor scene, a portrait with good skin tone, and one of the printing test images for good measure all arranged nicely) so I'm ready to print with a consistent image.

Now when it comes time to print to these different papers I have all the right profiles, but I am not 100% sure what is the best way to approach that one image.

Should I?
A. Use the exact same image for all papers and do no soft proofing and editing for the specific paper type?
or
B. Soft proof with each paper type and adjust the image to look like the original before printing to each type of paper?

My assumption is that option A would give me the most variation between prints, and option B would have less variation but you'd probably see the changes in paper colour and texture better as the variations would be more subtle?

I feel like option B is probably a more true to life representation of how once I've chosen my favourite papers I'd actually work so it might be the better option... but I'm curious how other people do it?
Or did you do it completely different way altogether?

Cheers,
Duncan
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Panagiotis

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #1 on: March 20, 2019, 06:54:52 am »

Hi everyone,

I'm fairly new to printing, but I've got my workflow down for printing and churned out a few nice prints that I'm happy with.
I'm now at the stage where I've bought a few different packs of sample paper so I can have a play and work out what types I like best.
I have created a composite image using a few different types (a black and white with a lot of tonal range, a bright sunny outdoor scene, a portrait with good skin tone, and one of the printing test images for good measure all arranged nicely) so I'm ready to print with a consistent image.

Now when it comes time to print to these different papers I have all the right profiles, but I am not 100% sure what is the best way to approach that one image.

Should I?
A. Use the exact same image for all papers and do no soft proofing and editing for the specific paper type?
or
B. Soft proof with each paper type and adjust the image to look like the original before printing to each type of paper?

My assumption is that option A would give me the most variation between prints, and option B would have less variation but you'd probably see the changes in paper colour and texture better as the variations would be more subtle?

I feel like option B is probably a more true to life representation of how once I've chosen my favourite papers I'd actually work so it might be the better option... but I'm curious how other people do it?
Or did you do it completely different way altogether?

Cheers,
Duncan

When I started printing and I bought sample packs....
For color I printed all samples with the Outback photo evaluation image unaltered with perceptual rendering indent and
for BW (when a second sample sheet was available) Keith Coopers BW test image unaltered.
I indexed and stored all the printed samples in a box for when I want to check again a paper I am not familiar with.
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datack

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2019, 07:06:30 am »

Hi Panagiotis,

Did you soft proof and adjust the image for each paper type or did you just print the exact same image with no adjustments each time?

Cheers,
Duncan
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Panagiotis

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2019, 07:24:09 am »

Hi Panagiotis,

Did you soft proof and adjust the image for each paper type or did you just print the exact same image with no adjustments each time?

Cheers,
Duncan

No editing at all. The images were printed unaltered. That is their purpose after all :)
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datack

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2019, 08:09:12 am »

Thanks :)

How about others? What process do you use?
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Alan Goldhammer

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2019, 08:30:54 am »

Thanks :)

How about others? What process do you use?
I use the same process as Panagiotis.  You can use the Outback image which is a composite of well recognized images that will challenge any printer.  Andrew Rodney, a frequent contributor to Lula, also has some good test images as does contributor Keith Cooper at Northlight Images (his B/W test image is really good).  No editing is required for any of these images as they are ready for printing with the appropriate profile for the paper you are using.  The color images are most useful in analyzing whether the profile (whether it is the manufacturer or one that you have created) is up to snuff.
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Mark D Segal

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2019, 09:10:12 am »

............

Should I?
A. Use the exact same image for all papers and do no soft proofing and editing for the specific paper type?
or
B. Soft proof with each paper type and adjust the image to look like the original before printing to each type of paper?

My assumption is that option A would give me the most variation between prints, and option B would have less variation but you'd probably see the changes in paper colour and texture better as the variations would be more subtle?

I feel like option B is probably a more true to life representation of how once I've chosen my favourite papers I'd actually work so it might be the better option... but I'm curious how other people do it?
Or did you do it completely different way altogether?

Cheers,
Duncan

Firstly, different papers are more suited to different photos. Some photos look better with gloss/luster papers, others with matte papers. This is a matter of artistic judgment, there are no hard and fast rules. So if you plan to use a small variety of papers (say no more than two or three) for most of your printing work, focus on which amongst those you are most likely to prefer. That is, if you plan to print both matte and gloss/luster, try several of each type to decide which one of each basic type you like best.

Secondly, the most relevant sampling and testing you can do is with several of your own photographs which of course embed your predominant style of photography. Once you have your papers and your photos lined-up for testing, implement your Option B, because as you say, this is how you will be adjusting the images to look the best they can on the chosen paper. But the one part of the procedure you are missing is to create a separate virtual copy of each paper/photo combination before you start adjusting (assuming you are working from Lightroom - highly recommended for seamless integration between image adjustment and printing). This way you can easily compare all the softproofs in the Develop Module side by side. As well check to make sure you have the right profile selected for each softproof and that once you set it in the Develop Module, you again select the identical profile in the Print Module. It does need to be selected in each module separately.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Rand47

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2019, 10:42:22 am »

Mark’s comments are right on the money.  But I would emphasize comparing the various soft proofs you’ve created for the corresponding papers, for their “equality of quality” so to speak.  The only disadvantage to soft proofing a reference image is that for multiple paper types your impression of the outcome could be influenced by the quality of your soft proofing job, rather than differences in the papers, per se.

Time and paper permitting, I’d perhaps do it “both ways” just for fun. 

Rand
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Mark D Segal

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #8 on: March 20, 2019, 11:34:12 am »

Sure. One needs to look at actual prints, (and be mindful of good viewing conditions), not only softproofs! (If that's what you were getting at.)
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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datack

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2019, 08:47:39 pm »

Thanks for your suggestions everyone.
Seeing as you usually get two sheets of each maybe I'll do both options :)
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enduser

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Re: What is the best process for printing on sample paper?
« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2019, 09:36:43 pm »

For Kieth Coopers B&W test image I converted it to 16 bit  and saved it as a tiff. It printed with some banding until I did that.
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