Photo printing was not that easy. It had a huge machine or enlarger, which used to project rays of light jet through the film negative directly over a chemically sensitized photo paper, and then washing the paper to reveal the final photograph. When I was young, I would to see this happen at my uncle’s studio, and felt, it must be a magic. Soon I started soaking almost whatever blank papers I found nearby, and couldn’t make anything out of it except paper pulp. Then I gazed through my family albums. It was like a time traveler, like getting introduced to your own blood through images. Every photograph had a story, cause with 36 clicks a film roll, hardly there were any shots which were attempted without any strong requirement. will travel bit behind the time, to taste nostalgia, and even swing forward may be 20 years ahead, and find out the difficulties which may arise.
Fig1: A sample photograph of old photo album (L) and new age digital album (R)
Image source: Internet
Photo printing was not that easy. It had a huge machine or enlarger, which used to project rays of light jet through the film negative directly over a chemically sensitized photo paper, and then washing the paper to reveal the final photograph. When I was young, I would to see this happen at my uncle’s studio, and felt, it must be a magic. Soon I started soaking almost whatever blank papers I found nearby, and couldn’t make anything out of it except paper pulp. Then I gazed through my family albums. It was like a time traveller, like getting introduced to your own blood through images. Every photograph had a story, cause with 36 clicks a film roll, hardly there were any shots which were attempted without any strong requirement
Now let us consider the present day. We have been to a family get together; there are almost all types of photographers, mobile, compact, handy-cam, dslr, etc. Everyone has secured so many memories. Once you are home, there will be a craze to poke you until you share the images across social media. Once it’s done, tag, post, comments, likes and that’s it. Consider a new family member down the line after 20 years of this family get together, where you have almost all the members under one single roof, how you will like to introduce the family to the new. It will be definite that many will get old; many may not be alive too. Sometimes, many stay alive but part away too. Neither you will have the same mobile phone to have the images, nor the laptop; the software must have been upgraded, etc etc. There has been a report in similar lines that post 2020, there will be no digital data saved to be recovered. What would you do? Where will all these selfies and digital images go then? And if extension is valid, why are we preserving?
No matter how digital we get, there is always a charm in a hard copy print view. This no one can deny. But apart from the emotions of its compatibility, the texture, the feel of the paper as you hold it, and what so ever, there is a hard-core technical aspect to it. Let’s take a note of it right from the root level. Suppose an apple, and there are 3 photographers to take a photograph of it. One shoots with a mobile, another with a compact camera, the third one with a full format high end dslr. How do you judge who takes the best image? It is due to the gadget specification, the dslr will win over clarity and colour. Now you ask all three to transfer the image in respective pc and show. Each one has separate PC/laptop with different monitor specifications and calibrations. Here, again, a calibrated 4K monitor will win over a LCD screen. Now the final and the worst part, Upload. Put it in any social media site, where it gets compressed and distorted accordingly, which is thereafter viewed in respective mobile phones. No point, you can come to a baseline to conclude who did the best. This is one such reason, why most of the international photography salons and competitions ask to submit only hard copy prints in a particular size and aspect ratio. Now one may say, even the printers differ. Yes, it surely does. It may so happen that you submit your photograph for a photography exhibition, and then when the images get displayed, you get disappointed with the colour tone and its gamma correction. You may even take out the same image in your mobile to compare, and express your disappointment to other viewer friends, but think befre you act. There are so many causes behind this mishap, that you need to rectify before reacting.
Then what’s the remedy. Few things which a true photographer must do:
· Calibrate there working PC/Laptop.
· Keep few preset calibration due to external light settings, and make sure you select the appropriate one while working
· During post processing do check the setting of the printer and do colour correction carefully.
· Take hard copy prints, at least 10 copies of 8x6 inches size in two months of photography, to identify whether things are going exactly the way you want it.
· Always try to stick to one specific printer. If changed, change the settings in your pc too.
Now, with that suggestion, the very usual question that crops us in mind, do you think this same is required for B&W photography also, or is it only for the Colour Prints? Comment your views on this below in the comment section.
If you guys have similar emotions for Digital Printing of Photography, we at VIBGYOR have come out with a very fresh initiative named Vibgyor Chitra Vahak. Find the details of it in the VCV Tab of this website: https://www.infovibgyor.com/vcv