not sure how to respond without saying something not so nice
my rather sordid comments were in response to the nasty names you
have made it a point to call me in a public forum ..
peeing dog .. cry baby and others ( which have since been sanitized )
because i think the policy of a lab that claims to only work with "only professionals",
but will give their prices to people who claim they are pros ( and aren't )
is pathetic, .. so then you began insulting me, and my friends who are the owners of pro labs that dont have this policy.
i had you on "ignore" because i want nothing to do with you
and i asked YOU to put me on your ignore list as well so you won't have anything to do with me...
yet you continue to goad me and mention me in your posts.
please leave me out of your commentary and your posts.
and yes i called you an a...hle because it seemed fitting seeing the way you were acting and looking back
i would say the same thing. ive been here since the early days and only now have had to use my ignorelist
because of not so nice posts, people and a pm box full of hateful mail.
so please do me and yourself a favor. leave me out of your posts and put me on your ignore list.
Last edited by jnanian; 01-24-2014 at 09:35 PM. Click to view previous post history.
Closed shops like this are usually in the wedding industry, and are offering bulk services for repeat clients.
Nothing wrong with this, I supply niche products to one of them here in Ontario. Millers is just protecting their interests. As I move forward with my lab I will not list as many spread-sheats about pricing, but rather take projects on their merits and quote accordingly
As a lab owner I can say that we are hesitant to list prices these days, as the whole photo finishing world has turned upside down and any wanker with a inkjet printer and a website can become a master printer and lab.
Very easy, strip the price lists of long established labs copy multiple labs web services and there you have it .
My film pricing and cd scan is double what Millers is, and I do not apologize, I am doing one shot Jobo and since in my city Toronto Image Works offers this bulk service and do it well I am not interested in competing where there is so little work. So I have a few clients , plus my own work that is done here and we are happy with this arrangement.
I am considering to be one of the last wet labs standing and have young partners in place that love wet work, to make this dream a reality. When the only main lab in Toronto
stops doing C41 then I will consider buying a dip and dunk machine and get my process and scan pricing where Millers is. Then it makes sense and you the photographer will either have to do it yourself, which btw is exactly what CatLabs specializes in , or send your film to regional labs which btw is how we started in colour processing.
I think E6 has pretty much gone, when C41 goes is debatable, and is the chemistry to process c41 stable enough for long term storage, if its stable in cold storage then at some point I probably will make a huge investment in chemicals and Colour Negative film.
The issue of how long the material can keep in storage is one I am interested and I am not capable of providing that answer, I would like to think 20 years but I am not sure.
One of the policys of these closed shops is , providing a valid card at the time of ordering , and the understanding the moment the job ships the client is billed,, I really am impressed with this and think this is the way to go.
Enough of the bickering, this is a free counrty, we are all entiteld to our opinions, Miller is free to do what they want, no reason to attack those who have different opinions or get the last word in. Regarding Miller's, if that is the way they operate, not a problem. I may give them a try myself and I am impress with all of the those who have personal experience with them sharring their thoughts.
That must be a southern thing. I have never heard of that, at ANY pro lab, yet.
Originally Posted by ParkerSmithPhoto
Honestly, being a professional photographer full time for 17 years now I've probably had about three labs that didn't ask me to open an account. It's really no more difficult than getting a membership at Costco.
Originally Posted by CatLABS
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It is a brutally competitive industry. One of my neighbors is a long time Atlanta lab owner who ran a large finishing lab that was advertising and competing on a national scale. Bankrupt. The commodity photo finishing lab is doomed.
Originally Posted by Bob Carnie
Costco is now setting the commodity photo print price baseline so low that almost no one can compete. The bigger players like Millers charge much more because they provide superior service and quality that commodity labs can't match.
I guess i must be doing something wrong... I have never seen that, anywhere. Maybe i was going to the wrong places...
Originally Posted by ParkerSmithPhoto
If there is a lab so prestigous that it is a closed club for select members only, why even bother, i mean why does any one need to work in order to give someone else business....??
But - there is after all a reason we process all our own films.
As bob carnie said, its better to be the member of a one man club, with your own processing gear, otherwise, send work to the many small labs popping up across the country and world, offering top notch service, that so called "pro" labs, with their archaic business models and antiquated equipment can only dream of.
Printing / processing = not the same thing. You can get perfect 4X6 prints in seconds at any wallgreens printed on a dry fuji/nuritsu/epson machine for next to nothing. Optical printing is long gone anyways so what difference does it make?
Originally Posted by ParkerSmithPhoto
Most costco and 1hour desks at stores no longer have wet anything, no minilabs no film processing.
Photo finishing is not doomed, its just transformed into something that is different.
The concept that one is a "pro" photographer, as opposed to someone who is just a plain old photographer is whats doomed, and for good reasons, none of which are the fact someone is grinding down the price (after all thats the basis of free market capitalism) and a natural occurring thing in all aspects of life.
Photographer sends film to a mini lab that processes via roller transport, but then scans and applies Digital Ice program to hide dust and scratches.
(Digital Ice programs were available to the large and mini labs for over 15 years.)
They then pull off brilliant 4x6 proof prints or even 8x10 prints, photographer is very happy .
Two years later , photographer comes to me with their cherished images, and ask me to make a series of 16 x20 silver gelatin prints.
I make the prints on my condenser enlargers, with Apo lenses, with level glass carriers resulting in beautiful prints with heavy scratches due to scratching in process.
Client thinks I am a shit, because the proofs were lovely but the prints are scratched , and I have already charged them for my services.
Very early in my printing for others day this was a common occurrence , if it wasn't scratches from other labs it was improper processing that usually resulted in poor shadow detail.
What is a poor boy to do, WELL I started to refuse foreign film negatives (film processed by others) , I was called arrogant, snobbish, reclusive,, ***Dinesh can add a few more names***.
This indeed started an exclusive club of clients who had me process, contact, scan and print only for them, it works and today I have clients that have been working with me with film and paper since 1991 till now.
Today this has changed for the good in my life as most files we print have been retouched and expectations are quantifiable. If I am printing from negatives it is very probable I have processed the film and can only look at myself if there is a problem.
I have kept my prices consistent to the other labs, and unlike Millers my doors are always open to walk in clients without accounts, but as you see from above I do have my policy's in place that can cause issues to clients expecting something different than what I offer.
GTA Imaging in Toronto is exactly like Millers and they offer top rate service to clients like the OP , but they have a pay up front policy (which I really like) but they do not offer film services, and No I do not provide those services for them.
Their pricing structure is based on long term client loyalty and that is what the OP is suggesting here. They have adjusted their markup to reflect continuous loyalty, much like Starbucks or even better Tim's. (for non Canadians, Tim's is a monster coffee chain here - started by the late great Toronto Maple Leaf defenceman Tim Horton.
I see nothing wrong with these models of Labs, in fact my first job in photofinishing was that of custom printer for Custom Colour Labs, here in Toronto, and I printed the large custom prints for commercial photographers across Canada and into the States. There was no walk in clients and everyone was on Account , and we were 40% cheaper than the more niche labs in town.
Like Omar (CatLabs) suggests , at least I think he is suggesting
We will eventually end up with large Labs like Millers or GTA's spread out over NA where the photographer will send out work and get it back in due course and be able to up charge the service and make the spread.
Or, smaller niche labs like mine, Toronto Image Works, Icon who service a professional, art, and retail client base .
Not to mention there will always be Mini-labs offering cheap and cheerful ink jet prints on systems to make you happy , happy , happy.
Just do not expect your local mini lab to offer you quality film process, or high end editing , printing services.
Not much has changed over the last 50 years , except the fact that the Manufactures (Epson, Cannon, Nikon, HP, Phase) (Sony, IPhone, Flicker) (Adobe Elements Lightroom Photoshop} has made photography assessable , easy , fun, safe, sexy , for every person on the globe today. There is good and bad elements .
But do not be mistaken, before digital there was 100, krillion trillion negatives shot that did not deserve the light of day, We are (capturing) a huge percentage more images today, but thankfully they are not being printed, but ending up on the web.
If you do a test and send the same file to Walgreens, Costco and then to a good lab like Millers or White House Custom Color, you will see a remarkable difference in the side by side comparison. We have a Walgreens literally ½ mile from my house, and I wouldn't send a picture of a sidewalk to be printed there. It's just awful. I know they have a Fuji machine, but it just isn't being used or maintained properly. No good.
Originally Posted by CatLABS
Costco has remarkably decent output, although color can be spotty, usually trending red. Good enough for family snapshots, quick 4x6 proofs, etc. Once you get to the 16x20 size they actually use large format inkjet which is quite good.
The price for an 8x10 at Millers or White House Custom Color is usually 4x what it would be at Costco, but the attention to quality and finish is remarkable, along with the customer service. (The competitive nature of the industry is such that if you don't have sparkling customer service, you will perish.) These two labs get 90% of my work, and for the finest art prints, my local large format Epson guy handles all of that. My lab bill last year was $12,000, and I could cut that considerably by using Costco, but with lower -- to me unacceptably -- quality.
The debate about "professionalism" in photography goes all the way back to the Daguerreotype days. The popularity of and demand for Daguerreotypes was such that the market was suddenly flooded with fly by night Daguerreotypists! There was a vigorous debate about who was a "professional" Daguerreotypist. This has been repeated over and over for decades.
The compression in the photo printing industry is primarily a result of people not printing their digital files. Too few customers + too many labs = lots of players going bankrupt. I can't tell you how many labs I've worked with over the years that just one day weren't there! Last year we lost our last E6 lab: