The Professional Photographer’s Digital Workflow

Lesson 33/47 - Make Fine Art Prints: Ink Jet Printers


The Professional Photographer’s Digital Workflow


Lesson Info

Make Fine Art Prints: Ink Jet Printers

Let's talk about choosing a printer. And this is, you know, like digital cameras, it's pretty hard to go wrong if you buy one of the top brands, you know, it's pretty much Canon and Epson these days. HP has made excellent printers, as well. They've kind of exited the high-end printer market, to some degree, but they still have a couple out there. In terms of the printers, you know, these aren't ones I'd necessarily suggest as the only printers you would buy, but these are some examples of printers you can buy, and the Canon imagePROGRAF PRO- is the one we have right here. Epson's got some new ones, I mean, my 3880 is a pretty old printer, so it's not the latest, greatest printer. The P800 and the P600 are great printers. I think the P600 is, well, we'll talk about pricing here in a second, but that's like five to 600 dollars, somewhere in that range, I might be a little off. The P800 I think is about 1200 bucks. I'm not sure how much this guy goes for, but, you know, the funny thing is...

; you may not realize it, but when you buy a printer, they're giving the printer for you for free. You're buying into ink. They're selling you ink is what, they're making all their money off the ink. Like, they're giving you this printer as a massive discount, because they know you're gonna have to buy more ink at some point. And then when you start buying the ink, like I said earlier, it can cost a fortune for the ink and paper, so these are great options, I would definitely recommend that you buy a decent high-end printer. Don't try and use your office printer to make prints, 'cause you're gonna be massively disappointed. There's definitely many others. If you wanna go for the really big printers, you know, the P9000, these are like grand pianos in your room, you know, I've got one sitting next to my desk that you saw, and they're giant, but you're gonna definitely need to be printing on these at least once a week, you know, for it to keep the ink going and make big prints every once in a while to, you know, make this justifiable. So, you probably already know if you need one of these. And they're great, I mean, you can print on almost any size of paper on those guys. So here you go, it's a little more than I though it was. $800 for that P600, and I think that can print 13 by 19 at least, it might go 17 by 22, I'm not sure. And obviously this P900 can go up to 44 inches wide. I think Epson and Canon even make printers that are, like, between here to the end, they're like 84 inches long, so, for the giant billboard printing, stuff like that, that most of us are never gonna do. So, the printers can be pricey. There you see my printer, so, these are the 9880 and the that's maybe two generations back, and the nice thing is you might even be able to find a used printer, but I'd be very careful. Make sure the thing actually works and the nozzles aren't clogged up. I bought my 9880 used; I got a stellar deal on it. That's how I could actually afford it. And I had a big print project where I was making 40 prints for a doctor's office. So, I did all the printing myself to make sure it was up to what I wanted these giant prints to look like, and the 3880, so, for my smaller printer is what I use probably 70% of the time to make medium size prints and then when I'm going big, I'll use the bigger printer. All of these are attached, by the way, by USB cables. I don't do wireless printing in the office because it's such a huge amount of data going to that printer; it's just faster to have it cabled in and not be wireless. Plus, my old printers don't have wireless options like this one does, so. As I said earlier, it's the gateway to buying ink. It's like the gateway drug here. Just so you can get an idea, wrap your head around the costs of ink. So, for the P600 over there, it's like 32 bucks a cartridge, but those are really small cartridges, so you're gonna have to replace them more often. So, even though that sounds cheaper than the $55 a cartridge, 29 milliliters versus 80 milliliters. It's less than half the size of the bigger printer cartridge, and if you bought the P800, which is, I think it's like $1200 for that printer. So it's $500 more than the smaller printer. If you're gonna print a lot over the lifetime of that printer, it's gonna be a cheaper option overall because of the ink costs, because you're gonna have to replace those cartridges less often. So. So, key thing here. Do not buy third party inks for your printer, unless you are a massively advanced printer and know what you are doing, because if you buy somebody else's ink and put it in your printer, all of these ICC profiles that allow you to get good colors out of your printer just went up in smoke, and you're gonna have a very difficult time getting accurate prints. Extremely difficult time, let's just put it that way. It may be tempting when you're at Office Depot, or whatever office supply store you're at, and you see oh, we can refill your ink cartridges right over here. It's like, mmm, no, don't do that. 'Cause it's not gonna go well.

Class Description

Setting up a practical and efficient workflow with your photography feels like a daunting part of your business. Internationally recognized photographer Michael Clark introduces you to techniques to allow you more time to shoot the images you want. His workflow philosophy is that you must first know how you are going to edit the image in post production to know how you need to shoot it.

In this class Michael teaches:

  • Best practices for a shooting workflow from setting up your camera to histograms and exposure
  • How to clean the sensor on your DSLR camera
  • Color management workflow including your work environment and monitor calibration
  • An overview of Lightroom® and multiple ways to speed up your workflow including file folder and batch naming as well as metadata and archival processes
  • Techniques to finalizing your images in Photoshop® with basic adjustments and retouching
  • Making fine art prints, choosing your printer, paper, understanding ICC profiles, and much more!

Michael covers everything you need to know in order to streamline your post production workflow in Lightroom® and Photoshop® and best practices for printing your art at home. Digital photography is far more complicated than shooting film ever was. Knowing the best practices for a digital workflow will make you a better photographer.


1Class Introduction 2Shooting Workflow: Set-up The Camera 3Shooting Workflow: Histograms and Exposure 4Shooting Workflow: Sensor Cleaning 5Overview of Color Management 6Color Management: Monitor 7Color Management: Workspace 8Color Management: Monitor Calibration 9Color Management: Do I Need This? 10Introduction to Lightroom® 11Download & Import Images With Lightroom® 12Lightroom® Preferences 13Six Ways to Speed-up Lightroom® 14To DNG or Not to DNG? 15A Logical Editing Process in Lightroom® 16File & Folder Naming in Lightroom® 17Batch Renaming in Lightroom® 18Entering Metadata in Lightroom® 19Managing Images in Lightroom® 20Introduction to the Develop Module in Lightroom® 21Lightroom® Develop Module 22Sharpening, Chromatic Aberration & Vignetting in Lightroom® 23Graduated Filters & Spot Tool in Lightroom® 24Converting images to Black & White in Lightroom® 25Creating Panoramas in Lightroom 26Creating HDR Images in Lightroom® 27Lightroom® to Photoshop® Workflow 28Export Images to Photoshop® 29Finalizing Images in Photoshop®: Basic Adjustments 30Finalizing Images in Photoshop®: Retouching 31Finalizing Images in Photoshop®: Saving Master Files 32Make Fine Art Prints: The Cost 33Make Fine Art Prints: Ink Jet Printers 34Make Fine Art Prints: Ink Jet Papers 35Make Fine Art Prints: Understand ICC Profiles 36Make Fine Art Prints: Sharpen Image 37Printing From Photoshop® 38Printing From Lightroom® 39Compare Monitor to Physical Prints 40Printing Black & White Image 41Extended Workflow: Back Up Images 42Extended Workflow: Storage Options 43Extended Workflow: Archiving Images 44Submitting images to Clients 45Prepping Images for Social Media 46Alternative Workflows 47Final Q&A


a Creativelive Student

Michael is a true professional and readily explains all of the nitty gritty issues of a photographer's digital workflow, including important things like Color Management, Lightroom workflows, Printing, and more. He is eager to answer your questions and has a thorough knowledge (after all, he worked with the original engineers at Adobe and wrote a book on it) and passion that he loves to share. He can get way deep into the subject, which I found fascinating. You can tell Michael has great experience in teaching and also likes to learn from his students. He is very authentic, honest, and direct. I highly recommend this class, and look forward to another one of Michael's courses in the future!

a Creativelive Student

This is an excellent course. It reinforced what I already knew and enhanced my spotty skills with new knowledge. I really like Michael's explanation of saving the document for print and web and the importance of doing these differently. Using the histogram to show this was terrific. Each session there is some valuable gem.

Angelita Sanchez

A fantastic course to give you a complete view of the full process of photography. Michael is an awesome instructor, very organized! A clear mind, and an approachable instructor always willing to answer your questions! A must for all photographers!