Updated: Aug 31, 2020
Do you print your GFX files? Many years ago I used to develop my own film and produce monochrome prints in my darkroom. Dodging and burning under an enlarger and then placing the paper into the developer. What magic! Seeing the image slowly appear. Now we use Lightroom, Capture One and Photoshop to finish our raw files, but do we print them?
During my years as a a wedding photographer I supplied clients with prints and carefully prepared albums. But I never had time to prepare prints for myself. I have messed around with inkjet printers and some years back I bought an A3 HP model but I hardly used it and it now sits in a cupboard. I have always found inkjet a real headache! Inks are always running out at just the wrong moment. Ink supplies so expensive. Infuriating paper jams. They drive me mad. Then there are all the calibration issues etc. I have seen other photographers who produce beautiful prints using this technology but I guess it is not for me.If anyone can convince me that it is worth trying again then please get in touch. Things may have improved since I last tried.
Going back to the original question Do You Print? The quality of the GFX files ( or any medium format file ) is so great that it would be madness not get prints made from our favourite images. I’m sure you agree.
I took this picture of my latest grandchild today. Daylight from window with ISO bumped up to 3200 ISO. Taken with the 64mm end of the zoom so roughly equivalent to a 50mm on a 35mm full frame camera. I have used the Acros simulation. Although the ISO is fairly high I was surprised by the lack of noise in this image.
Now getting back to printing, how should I get this image printed? Should I go for a Digital C-Type print? I understand from Kevin Mullin's site f16.click that this technology "combines the best of digital photography with the best of traditional darkroom printing.".
As I understand C-Type printing is like a darkroom in the digital age in that traditional developers are used on traditional darkroom papers. The result is better gradual tonal changes so maybe better suited to monochrome?
Giclée printing I believe is like high quality inkjet printing. Hope I got that right. I am new to all this as when supplying clients I always made sure my monitor was calibrated and left the rest to the Lab or album company.
But I believe if we want to get serious about printing with a good professional Lab we need to download their printer profiles and "soft proof" the images in Lightroom / Photoshop. This I guess is particularly important for avoiding "out of Gamut" problems with colour printing.
If you have experience to share regarding your own printing practices then please do contribute.