Here are some of my comments and suggestions:
It's a great idea. If we can settle on a proper shipping container and some other logistical parameters I would also volunteer to get a traveling portfolio organized. I would be willing to contribute to the cost of a shippable portfolio. Perhaps the only requirement to be included could be a small one time fee to help pay the total cost, paid at the time the print is shipped to the organizer(s).
I think we need to determine the optimal number of participants to be included to make the number of prints manageble and cost of shipping between participants reasonable. If we have more participants, I guess we start a list and they go into a second portfolio after the first is completed.
Size wise I think we need to decide how prints will be presented. There will not be much weight difference between actual 8x10 and 11x14 prints, but if we are talking mounted to a mat, then the weight difference will be substantial per print. I for one do not feel comfortable sending an unmounted fiber print. I would be OK with sending an RC version as curling of the print is not an issue, but I perfer to present my best effort and that means FB paper mounted.
I also like the idea of having a forum to discuss the work between participants. I think all participants should agree that any work that is traded between participants is a free exchange of work.
We also need to set out some discalimers such as APUG, its organizers and participants are not responsible for the unauthorized use or misuse of an image and are not responsible for loss due to theft, damage, bungling by the shipping agent etc.
The participants should include any and all information they can fit on to one sheet paper. At the minimum include your name with the print. If you want to share a story or technical data about the photograph I think that would also be great.
Please comment on my ideas and include me in the first run. Perhaps we need to issue a "call for entries" to see what the interest is.
"Fundamentally I think we need to rediscover a non-ironic world"
It doesn't look like it should be a problem right off, but I would suspect around 15-20 prints would be the maximum per portfolio, considering that it has to come around with a certain frequency to sustain a conversation about its contents.
Matted prints lend themselves better to a box-type portfolio, where the matted prints are simply stacked. Unmounted prints would work better with a loose-leaf type portfolio, with black pages and acetate sheaths. We might want to agree on what sort of presentation we prefer. I have no strong preference either way.
If we go with matted prints, each contributor could print out an information sheet and tack it to the back of the mount. If we go with unmounted prints, the info sheet could go on the backside of the portfolio page.
I'd lean toward 8x10" as a maximum size, but lament that that would exclude submissions of contact prints from ULF negs. We could go with an 11x14" portfolio and just say that if contributors want to include an 11x14" contact print, it will have to be flush mounted. (Of course, then I'll really want to see one of William Levitt's 12x15's from his new camera, and one of Carl Weese's 7x17's, and...anyone shooting 20x24" around here?).
The call for entries would certainly be a necessity.
For starters, we should probably start a new thread for the call for entries. I am sure that at least 50% of the APUG members aren't contact printing or reading this thread I'll cast my vote for 11x14 matted in a box.
To tell you the truth, I would be mainly interested in contact prints. A whole-apug print exchange would be nice too though.
art is about managing compromise
how does this 'travelling portfolio' work? Do you replace your own print when it returns to you?
Say you have 5 participants.
The 'organiser' (Person A) sends a pic to the 1st reciepient (Person B ). B adds a pic to the folder, and sends it on to C, etc. Once it gets back to A there will be 5 pics (4 they haven't seen) and they replace their pic with a new one then send it on to B. They get to view 4 new pics and replace theirs and send it on to C, etc
So, once it gets back to you, you'll have 4 (in this example) new pics to look at.
Is that what you envisage?
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Yes, that's what I was thinking.
It means the first few people won't have much to look at, but I figure that's only on the first round, and it avoids the logistical problem of assembling the prints at the beginning of every cycle and means people can jump in and drop out any time (i.e., we can add new addresses to the list as we go, or someone could withdraw when it comes back to them).
I concur with the idea of starting with one person and then sending it along a list of people who add a print when they receive it. I am also ok with the idea of a loose-leaf style portfolio for unmounted prints to begin with. If anyone can recommend some specific brand names of suitable portfolios for 11x14, please list them and I will see what is available locally. I think B&H or Freestyle handle various presentation portfolios and they may be the least expensive option.
I suppose the next thing is perhaps those of us currently discussing this reach a consensus on some of the ideas posted so far and then present them in a seperate thread on the announcement forum.
"Fundamentally I think we need to rediscover a non-ironic world"
Just curious. Would a Kodak or Fuji machine enlargement of Polaroid shots be acceptable?
Ok, some observations. If people want to mount the print this does not have to be on a mat board, you can mount it on heavy weight hot pressed watercolor paper which will lend "body" to the print without making it too heavy or cumbersome.
So as it stand the consensus is:
1- revolving portfolio size 11x14
2- either contact prints or enlargements up to 11x14
3- observations, questions, could be added to a note or page. Critique? not stablished yet.
4- prints will have name and/or information attached to the back of the print.
5- participants will e mail their address to either Brian or David and they will in turn will compile them and put them in somekind of e mailable list (xcel?) in the order in which the portofolio will be mailed.
6- Number of participants? I think 20 is a good number. If we have more then we can start a second portfolio.
7- The organizers will e mail a little form or statement which will say that APUG, the staff, and the organizers of the exchange are not responsible for missuse, loss, shipment damage etc, of the prints. Each members who includes a print must print this little form and sign it and attach it to the print.
One more thing to think of is the country of origin of the member. Some of us reside outside of the US and shipping to/from us will be more expensive. For example the member who is to be before me will have to ship the portfolio to Mexico (more expensive) this will in turn take more time to get here (usually 2 weeks air mail). In my case shipping back to the US is not a big deal since mail boxes etc can get it done in 7 to 10 days, but if we are talking to Australia or NZ then we have a whole new ball of wax to deal with. So I propose those who wish to participate e mail your address to Brian/David ( I leave it up to them to coordinate) and see which are the mayority of the members and their countries. As much as I would regret not to be able to participate I would understand if this exchange is made only for members in the US, etc. for logistical reasons.
So lets make a descision here on these points and have either Brian or David post a "call for participants" for the print exchange.
PS. Steve is up to you, if you think the Fuji enlargement is a good example of your best work then by all means do it.
Seems like a good summary, Jorge. Brian and I need to talk, then, to see how to organize things. I'm happy to do some of the organization, but at the same time if Brian or someone else feels strongly about doing it or wants to split up the duties in some way, that's fine with me too.
I think it would be great if this were an international exchange. Maybe once the list of participants is established, we can find a few volunteers willing handle the more hefty postal fees, or if we have the right combination, maybe we can sequence them so that it's not too onerous for anyone.
On Steve's machine reprint issue, I agree with Jorge. Obviously we are taking some risk by shipping a portfolio around the world, and I can certainly understand why someone wouldn't want to put a unique item like a Polaroid at risk like that. Of course individual conventional prints are unique in their own way, but Polaroids even more so.