Fine Art Photography: Imaging for output, Three Part Discussion

iris-as-printed

The end result of photography is not as it used to be. In the days of film photography the only way the photographer could view the image was as an actual printed photograph or sit in a darkened room and

original on screen irisview a slide show. If the processed photo was excellent the photographer might consider an enlargement for display. Unless the photographer had access to a dark room the film and print were created by “photo labs”. The photographer usually did not have much input into how the image was processed and developed. The only way others could view or enjoy the work of the photographer was to actually be there and view the physical print or the slide show. Occasionally, professional photographers were published in magazines and were able to share their work with a larger audience. Most photos, however, were developed, printed to a small format and then stuck in a drawer and forgotten.

Digital imaging and the internet have changed everything. Photographers can now share their work with the entire world. Through social media sites like Flickr, Smugmug, Facebook or email photographers can display their work and get feedback. With tools like Photoshop, Lightroom or Picasa the photographic artist can enhance, create and process his work in the “digital darkroom”. With the cost of film development eliminated, an artist can be as prolific as she wants to be. One need never create an actual print to consider oneself a digital photographic artist. As one develops as a photographic artist in this digital age, the mastery of imaging software is the first step in becoming a fine art photographer.

 There comes a time, however, when the photographer wants to have an actual print. Whether it is to enter competitions and art shows or to hang on the wall, the printing of one’s digital work is a logical next step. Often there is a surprise and disappointment when the resulting print does not come close to matching the image on the computer screen. The photographer then realizes that there is another element to learn in this process. There are many factors that effect digital imaging output. From defining and working in a color space to specifying profiles for the print media, the variables in printing can be daunting and mysterious.

In this three part discussion, we will start with image capture, processing and color space. Part two will discuss media profiles, screen calibration and print drivers and software, part three will cover the printing process, printers and media.

Art Festivals

  Arts and crafts festivals are one way to market your art or fine art craft. For some artists this is a way of life. For others it is a good way to supplement their art income by doing a few shows each year. It can be a grueling and exhausting, yet for some artists it is very profitable.  If you think your work would sell well in the festival setting, try out a few local venues.  An online site, Art Fairs Calendar.com, has an extensive listing of art festivals. http://www.artfaircalendar.com/art_fair/new-england-art-fairs.html   Many of the on-line listing sites charge membership fees for information on festivals and calls for entry. Subscribing to one or more may be worth the fees in the time saved by searching.  However, if you wish to enter or attend a specific show or two, paid subscriptions are likely not worth the expense. Most venues have on-line information and applications forms.    

 Now is the time to start your applications, if you wish to participate in the 2011 season. Most summer shows have March or even earlier deadlines.  If you have not participated in a festival be prepared.  Start with small local venues, unjuried if you are new to the process. Go to the shows you would like  to enter and get a feel for the set-up and ask the participants how they are doing.  Find shows where your art fits in.

Minimizing risk when posting to the internet

When putting artwork or photographs on the internet,

it can become “fair game” to the whole world, despite copyright laws. There are complicated codes that can prevent images from being copied, but these codes are not used on all sites. Social media sites like Facebook or Flickr do not protect your images and what you upload, can be downloaded.

In this time of open sources, privacy issues in Facebook and other social sharing sites, and on-line stores, it can be difficult to protect your images. Placing a watermark in the middle of the picture is one way to protect it. However, that severely lowers the quality of your image. If you are trying to present your work to potential customers, you want it to be sharp and clear.  Additionally, with software like Photoshop CS5, a watermark can be easily eliminated.

 So how does one protect art work on the internet and still take advantage of the vast marketing potential offered by social media? You could limit your exposure only to sites where your work can not be easily copied, for example www.Artid.com.  Or you can recognize the risks involved and post only work that is “web friendly” but not “print friendly”.  Be aware of the resolution of the file you post. If your image is 500 pixels on the longest side, it will be large enough to see clearly on the computer screen but can not be enlarged beyond that size. An added plus to that size is how rapidly it will load. Your viewers will appreciate the quick load time.

 Accept the risk that the image might be “borrowed”. But since your work cannot increase in size easily, your file will not be very useful to the borrower.  Be sure to always mark or sign your work clearly. On social networks, friends will share images they like, not intending to steal but rather to share an experience. That is why we network. It is a great chance for your work to be viewed by a new and larger audience.  The internet is a great new way for artists and photographers to market their work.  If your name is clearly marked, someone who sees your work might become a fan.  Use the internet wisely and take care to protect your work as much as you can. 

 A helpful hint for those who use Photoshop:  To easily scale your image smaller and quickly, use the “Save for Web & Devices” Command under File. It saves your image as a separate file, either jpeg, png, or bmp. Resize in the dialog box to 500 pixels on the longest side and you are ready to upload.

New Competition

“What I Did Today” May 19,2010

Show us what you did today. Upload your images, photos or artwork to our fan page on Facebook. You can upload one image a day for two weeks. Competition ends on Tuesday, June 1, 2010.  Enter to win a FREE 16×20 PRINT from GoNE, Inc.  Entrants will be eligible to become a finalist in the GRAND PRIZE shootout to be held in November, 2010. GRAND PRIZE is a Flip Video Camcoder

A total of 14 images per fan can be uploaded over the next two weeks.  Winner will be chosen by fan votes during the week of June 2-7.   Start collecting those votes to be in the running for the Flip Video. Its worth Shooting for!

Art ID Blogging

Art ID

I was recently asked to join the bloggers on Art ID.  I was most honored to be selected as a giclee expert to share my experience and knowledge with fellow artists.  Art ID is an online gallery dedicated to marketing and promoting artists. Unlike many other online sites, Art ID is very actively working to find markets and opportunities for artists to sell their work.  Art ID takes no commission and offers sites from totally free to large and artist controlled galleries for a small fee. For artists without their own website, this is a very valuable service.  For artists with a website it is a way to further their on-line presence and get valuable marketing information and prospects.  The Blogs are full of good advice on marketing, painting and all things artistic.  If you are not already one of the thousands of members, consider joining.  An additional plus, is that this site was founded locally and the site owners and contributors are artists local to the western Massachusetts area.

New England’s Finest Artists Show

The GoNE, Inc Gallery is presenting a new show: 

 New England’s Finest Artists

 

The GoNE, Inc. gallery is proud to present a fine sampling from some of  New England’s finest artists. The Show will be running from now until the end of February. Meet the artists at the reception on February 12, 4-7pm. 

A few of the artists are;  

  • Anna Ozolins,
  • Ed Champigny,
  • Alexandra Walters,
  • Lorraine Courtright,
  • and several others.

If you are experiencing the winter doldrums, remember art is an excellent “get away”.

New Gallery Show

Giclee of New England Gallery is proud to present the art work of  Gary Lippincott. Gary is a well-known illustrator/fantasy artist. His newly published children’s book,  Off to the Fairies Ball, written by Jane Yolen is availble for sale in the Gallery. Gary will be signing copies of his book at his reception, December 5, 2009, 4-7pm. Refreshments will be served.  We are part of the Open Studio Tour which takes place December 5-6 in this region. Maps for the open studio tour are available at the gallery.

Initial Post

goneinc logoWelcome to the initial post of the GoNE, Inc. website.  The intent of this site, as well as our business mission, is to be the prime on-line resource for our regional artists.  New England is an area brimming with talented artists and artisans. Our goal is to be the first resource New England artists and photographers turn to for information and inspiration. To reach this goal we will need your input. Let us know where and when shows are happening. What classes you are teaching. What awards you have won. Send all your art news and art press releases to goneincnews@gmail.com

Watch the Events pages for local news, upcoming calls for entry, classes, shows and art events. New artists will be continually be added to our artists’ gallery pages.  Follow us on Tweeter or become a Facebook fan for the latest information.