Although photography is a fun hobby, it also comes with a steep learning curve. Not only do you need to master technical details, like the best lens to use, but you also have to learn about perspective and lighting. You might feel so overwhelmed by the act of snapping photos you don’t think about printing them.
But each photo you take is another step in your journey to becoming an expert. That’s why you should print them out to commemorate your progress. As it turns out, printing your photos is its own art form.
There are all sorts of places that can print your photos for you. CVS, Target and Walmart can all get the job done — but that costs you a ton of money over time. Here are a few easy ways to get the job done in the comfort of your own home.
Follow these tips
There’s no better feeling than holding a photo in your hand. It feels more solid than simply admiring it in your camera’s photo gallery. Here are a few quick ways to make the photos you print at home look their best.
1. Use high-quality paper
You’ve spent good money on lenses. You’ve poured time into learning about resolution, color schemes and the other elements of a good photo. If you want to hold the result of your hard work in your hands, invest in professional paper.
Even the most beautiful photo won’t look its best on plain printer paper. So check out the different types of paper that can make your pictures look best, like matte, glossy and metallic paper.
2. Calibrate your display
This is a fancy way of saying, “Adjust your monitor settings.” Your current settings may not accurately reflect the way your photos will look once you print them. Go to your settings and adjust your monitor’s brightness, contrast and color balance. This can be tough on your eyes, though, so we recommend using a hardware colorimeter to make your screen’s colors as accurate as possible.
3. Soft proof your photo
This is a simple way to see what your photo will look like when you print it. You can make extra adjustments to sharpness, color balance and saturation, so the version on the computer looks just like the original photo on your camera.
You can do this on Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom, as well as many free programs. For example, GIMP has its own Print Simulation feature.
4. Use a printer without traditional ink cartridges
Money is one of the biggest reasons many amateur photographers don’t print their own images. Using traditional printers means you run the risk of losing precious ink. Replacement cartridges are expensive, which means you’re bleeding money in the long run.
That’s why Kim loves our sponsor, the Epson EcoTank. It comes with a ridiculous amount of ink right in the box. Instead of cartridges, Epson uses refillable ink bottles. One bottle provides enough ink to print a whopping 6,000 color pages.