The (in)significance of resolution

Started Apr 15, 2013 | Discussions thread
Laurence Matson
Laurence Matson Forum Pro • Posts: 11,962
Re: The (in)significance of resolution

DMillier wrote:

Hi Laurence

Epson R2400 + Lyson Photochrome R24 + Permajet Matte Plus 240 paper

She's doing very well, big now, could sit on the counter!

Hope you are well, don't see you much around here these days.

Thanks for the update. Look forward to seeing you and her again some decade.

I have some beefs with your process, from what I have been able to glean.

I read something about 300 dpi, but I was not sure about whether that is what you were punching in for the print or whether that was only for the perceived acuity comment. Epson printers do best at 180 dpi and multiples thereof. They will, of course, do their best with whatever you throw at them.

My experience is as follows:

- My goal for the last four decades has been to get rid of viewing distance. Every print should be as devoid as possible of elements that push the viewer back. The stories are in the details.

- I prepare every file for my Epson printer at 180 dpi, which is fine for the very large prints. When I reduce that file for a smaller size, I do not do anything but change the file to a multiple of that dpi. Of course this means that I get some funny sized images, but I do not care much about that.

- I print at the highest possible ppi the printer allows and only print in one direction. I ask the printer's engine to give maximum detail and use pretty good matt smooth rag paper.

- For as many years as I have been doing this - going on ten now in the inkjet era - I have consistently had the same response, which I have observed from viewers: They go closer and closer rather than going away.

An example:

Moss Glen Falls near Rochester, Vermont

This file is 2 x 2.4 meters at 180 dpi. Since I cannot get that out of my printer, I change it to 1 X 1.2 meters at 360 dpi. For postcards (50 x 55 cm), I change to 720 dpi; for really small, to 1440 dpi. In each case, there is no loss of pixel-level detail but rather a noticeable detail enhancement. Again, I have had enough input over the last years to confirm that my pot-smoking habit has not consumed my perceptive abilities.

Also, over the years, enough of my prints done this way have been on display for all to dawishly peck at. Since the first large show at photokina 2004, the comments and physical response have remained the same.

Anyway, this is a good and important discussion topic and should not be perceived by some as a pïssing contest. That is certainly not my intention.

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laurence at appledore-farm dot com
"The fact of being reported multiplies the apparent extent of any deplorable development by five- to tenfold" (or any figure the reader would care to supply).
Barbara Tuchman, A Distant Mirror

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