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Thursday, March 18, 2010

••◊ sharpness, contrast, saturation,...rinse, lather, repeat.

Last night I made another visit to a class taught to my colleague, Oreste, at the UCSD extension campus. This time he was teaching an intro to printing course, for which I'm not an expert. Being part of the digerati, I've kind of given up on printing photos except for my own fine art collection. However, working for a printing company I was bound to pick up more than a few pieces of useful information about print quality and image reproduction issues.

Like last time, I had to come up with a class picture. This concept came to me because I have my brain inundated with hip-hop at the moment. Yep, wide angle, not quite fish eye lens, top lighting. Notice the "UC" gang sign for his printing posse - the CMYK's of room 134. Vignetting and color adjusted in post. Now...about Oreste's look. I told him to give me gangsta. He gave me more of a "Weird" Al Yankovic Cuban gangsta. Sorry Oreste, you don't have a future in male modelling.

So...print quality. It really comes down to three things once all the obvious image flaws are taken care of. 1. Sharpness - your eyes are drawn to whatever is sharp. 2. Contrast - Don't blow the highlight or kill shadow detail. 3. Saturation - Even Tim Burton refrains from pure candy colors. I often had to bring the students back to these three topics because just like most photogs, including me, our first inclination is to look at the composition. That's a different class.

Off to a hip hop dance shoot tomorrow. Hells yeah baby.

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