What You See Isn’t Always What You Get [Part 2 of 3]

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So in Part 1 of “What You See Isn’t Always What You Get,” I basically gave you a list of all the things that go into a good picture. Now I talk through TAKING and PRINTING the picture.

Taking the Picture:

The Photographer: does the person taking the picture know how to frame it? I would take a low quality picture framed well over a high quality picture not framed well. And this is good news for you – learning to be a better photographer (thanks to all the information online) is cheaper than buying expensive equipment.

The Lens: This matters more than the camera. The camera is what processes the image, but it is the lens that sees it. Some lenses are made of high quality glass and some are made of plastic. The lens matter. But don’t worry – a good lens is cheaper than you think. I’ll blog about that this November.

The Camera: Bigger isn’t always better, but it often is. My point & shoot from 2007 takes better pictures than my iPhone 4s. Use a decent camera, not just your phone.

Printing the Picture

Ink & Paper: If I print a picture on a paper grocery bag it isn’t going to look as good as a professional print shop. The quality of the ink and paper matter. And matter A TON! Which brings me to the next item:

The Monitor: I love my MacBook Pro. Seriously love it. But wouldn’t ever edit pictures using it. The contrast is high and the colors aren’t accurate enough. One of the advantages of hiring a professional photographer (as in one who does it for a living, not just on the side) is that they will have a color calibrated monitor. What does that mean? First, they can see a full range of color, unlike your typical monitors. And second, what they see on their screen when they edit is calibrated to the print shop they use, so it will look the same. No surprises.

So what about you. How can you ensure the best printing possible for those pictures that aren’t professionally done? In part 3 of this post I will talk about my favorite print shop…cheaper and better than what you use…you won’t want to mis this one.

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