Over the last few days, I have been tossing an idea over in my head.
In the past, I have dabbled in sports photography (digital, of course), having made a few sales here and there with state level motor sports events. While I would like to keep that side of things going, I accept that the market is very competitive and I don't have the right amount of time to invest in it away from my home (its hard when both my Wife and myself work during the week for me to leave her at home with the children by herself while I choof off for the weekend, every weekend or so).
But, I have thought of an idea that would be very compatible with my lifestyle and the style of photography that I enjoy (on many levels). That would be offering a Classic Photo service for Classic motorsports. IMHO, B&W prints seem to suit classic motorsport extremely well and we all know that there is nothing like a traditional B&W print.
Which leads me to my next questions. At this stage, I am only playing with standard Multigrade RC paper. From what I read, RC paper is a print on life support, but that being said, RC paper is potentially easier to deal with.
If I decide to pursue this idea, would it be in my best interest investigating fibre based paper? Would toned RC paper cut it, or would RC paper be the devil incarnate itself in the "Fine Art" sense of the word (& that being said, would I really be dealing with "Fine Art"? Me thinks not)?
Any advice would be welcome
Whether or not you decide to pursue the project, I highly recommend picking up some 11x14 Ilford Multigrade matte fiber paper. It's some amazing stuff. If you haven't tried fiber paper you're missing out. It is THE paper. The blacks are not as black as RC paper; they're more velvety.
But it sounds like hoffy hasn't done much printing with either fiber or RC, so I'd recommend working with RC for a while to see how things work out on this venture. Just from a cost point of view. I think (or hope) the broad market still discriminates 'silver gelatin' from inkjet, but not so much RC from fiber anymore. The comment about RC prints being on 'life support' I would suggest are unfounded. Good luck!
I would recommend sticking with RC paper until you have mastered the art of darkroom work. There are no short cuts to gaining experience in the darkroom, but RC papers develope quicker and wash in a shorter time. They are also well accepted by the viewing public. And of course they are here to stay despite what what you said.
Thanks for the advice.
Is it (for longevity) worthwhile toning RC papers?
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A hotel near me has about twenty framed 10x8 prints in the bar of classic racing cars taken at the annual Goodwood Festival of Speed. They are slightly sepia toned and I think they are proper prints, not inkjet.
The sepia black and white really does suit these images.
Some of them here: http://www.islandimages.org.uk/goodw...hotography.php
"People who say things won't work are a dime a dozen. People who figure out how to make things work are worth a fortune" - Dave Rat.
Ohhh, Goodwood....now that is high on my "Must Visit" list.
Now, I have to admit I am not a fan of sepia, but those in the examples above would appeal.
hmmm, food for thought.
For convience sake, I would use RC paper. However, for the family's sake, I would invest in some sort of camper and take them along. You could rig a darkroom in the rig, and process on site, and sell them at the event. People really go for being able to acquire a photo nearly immediatly after an event. Race Friday night, post pix Saturday morning. Pit shots and Saturday races post on Sunday. Of course, you're going to be tired, so the wifey will have to drive for you, and there are ways to involve her and the kids in the business to keep them occupied. Even if they dont help daddy, at least they are around you on weekends.
Drool... Gad I love those old Jags. I think people usually shoot the C-types from too low an angle. I think a higher angle shows their true beauty. Well, seeing one in person really shows their true beauty.
I think you've got a good idea, there. The point about becoming good with RC makes sense, but I think eventually fiber would be the way to go, as you can use it as a selling point. Like,
"Printed in the traditional way on Ilford fibre based paper..."
"Printed using the finest Ilford fibre based paper, just as was done when these cars first pressed tyre to pavement..."
Of course that one would rule out Multigrade, I suppose.
Fiber isn't all that difficult to use, the major significant difference is that it must be washed for a longer time, and the only way to know the washing is adequate is to do a retained hypo test.
OTH, most people who might be buying the prints won't know the difference, and won't be short-changed by getting an RC print. And one could make a valid argument that an RC print, properly washed in 5 minutes might well be more "archival" than a fiber print washed for 40 minutes insufficiently.
Get a pack of fiber and see what looks best. If it's the fiber, do the learning to be comfortable working with it.