My tutor suggested that I get some prints of my images from assignment three. I haven’t had much experience with this in the past, and so I felt a little out of my depth. I had previously gone to a local shop to get some prints done for an earlier assessment. However, upon collecting the prints, I noticed that they had a really noticeable colour cast. Therefore, I decided to try a professional printing company for these assignment prints. The results were very pleasing. I ordered a selection of both gloss and matte finish, as well as a variety of A4 sized and 8″ x 6″ prints. This provided me with a large amount of varying images to compare and contrast.
Firstly, I noticed that I felt that the best print finish was the matte finish. This prevents any unwanted reflections from obstructing the print, and distracting from the image. I have read that the matte finish is the best finish for monochrome images, as black and white photography is based on light and dark values, therefore matte frames keep outside light from ruining the composition. The matte versions appeared more muted, less flashy, and contained a professionalism that the glossy images do not have.
I did note that perhaps if the images had been in colour, my feelings would have been different. This is due to the sharp qualities that a gloss finish contains; thus bringing out the vibrancy of colour. However, the problems with image glare would still have persisted, and so therefore I think that matte would still have been my preference.
I further noted that when handling the prints, it was much easier to handle the matte finish without worrying about causing damage to the image. The stickiness of the gloss finish resulted in fingerprints and dust catching the print. This makes it more difficult to preserve the print over a long period of time. Matte prints are not sticky at all, and so don’t attract such problems. This is a further benefit that I noted with the matte finish.
In regards to the size of the images, I feel that the large A4 size was the best. The 8″ x 6″ prints were a strange size which were not pleasing to look at, and didn’t seem to balance out very well. The A4 size is a good large-sized image, that clearly shows each aspect of the image well. The A4 print was unfortunately finished with gloss, but would definitely have been the strongest print of the set if finished in matte. The image glare on the gloss finish was worsened with the larger print which seemed to act as a large reflector to catch even more unwanted light than the smaller versions. This further cemented my preference for a matte finish.