From picking the camera settings all the way to finding its proud spot on a happy customer’s wall. A photo travels a long way before it reaches it s final destination.
I captured this shot a while back on a pretty average day at Long Reef Beach. The afternoon wasn’t producing much and a clear blue sky was allowing the sun to punch with full force onto the water surface and light was reflecting in all kinds of unwanted directions for my camera. A perfect summers day, but not ideal for capturing water.
I think to myself:
“What to do? Head in, give up and call it a terrible decision to have come out?
No! A few more shots! Maybe some underwater stuff! The light might be terribly glary on the surface, but underwater it’s looking good!”
A few frames later I capture an interesting one. A first check in the water: Everything is in focus and it looks like there might be some great shape and light combinations going on. Time to head back and download the images to my computer.
After spending a while editing this image in Adobe Lightroom I’m happy with the result and the title and story come to mind:
I believe that the true beauty of the ocean lies beneath the surface. As violent and dangerous as big waves may seem on the outside – as a surf and ocean photographer I usually find myself just on the edge of the raw power and chaos. It’s a surprisingly calm and peaceful spot to be in and feeling the motion of the water, diving through a big wave and watching it explode is the sensation that makes me come for more every time.
Next I talk to my local printer and framer and work out the best paper and sizes for this image and adjust my image using my printer’s colour profile. I want the best of the best for my photos, there is nothing worse than seeing your own, hard work displayed in cheap quality that doesn’t do it justice.
It’s the little things that matter! If the image isn’t adjusted to the print and paper it is printed on, the final outcome might be very very different from the image I intended to show.
I try to stay local for my printing work too as it is great to work with, and promote local businesses and it also allows me to check the quality of the print myself before it’s sent off to the client.
Once I know the ideal sizes and formats I add the image to my SurfLove Print Store
One of the local printers I use is FiveMagics. Patrick is a great guy who’s helped me out finding the best image quality and sizes and I work with a printer profile that was designed for his printer only to do the final adjustments for this image to look as best as it possibly can on paper.
Patrick let me film the printing process of this exact image. Watch the video below to get an idea of what actually happens.
For this image I chose to use metallic paper as it tends to look best behind acrylic and emphasises the contrast, making it ‘pop’ – which in this case is exactly what I want. I want it to look as 3-dimensional as possible so the viewer actually thinks the wave is moving.
After printing the print is laminated with a double sided, optically clear adhesive film and then the laminated image is mounted onto a 6mm acrylic sheet. The right settings for the laminator (temperature, pressure and speed) are crucial for a successful print and it’s each printers’ secret what settings work best.
The acrylic sheet used is a 6mm ShinkoLite sheet, which are cut and diamond polished and known amongst printers for quality and consistency in depth.
To protect the photo paper and add rigidity an aluminium composite panel (really light weight) is glued to the back of the print. This also provides the space for the invisible frame later on. To make sure the aluminium composite panel isn’t visible it is cut 1mm shorter than the acrylic sheet.
In the final step the hidden frame is glued onto the aluminium panel which needs to dry for 24h before the acrylic print is ready for packaging.
The result is a 75x50cm 6mm acrylic print – ready to hang. I couldn’t be happier with the outcome! What do you think?
If you’d like to purchase your own version of Liquidised please click here, or just click on the image below.