Are print exchanges about giving or recieving?
I say they are about both. Here's what I mean.
I like giving prints to people. That's all I have ever done to be honest, since I started photography. I'm just glad someone likes any one of my prints enough to say so to me. I take pride in sending prints too. Hopefully people see that when they get one of my prints.
On the other side, I like recieving prints more.
I have recieved amazing alternative prints; my first exposure (pun?) to a PT print was from Jeremy Moore that got me into alternative processes. Jeanette sent me a calendar in one exchange that I kept in my office and still keep around in my collection. I now wish I joined the postcard exchange 5 rounds earlier, even though this round is proving to be a problem for me (I'm a colour slide photographer mostly without a 'real' darkroom, so I'm not sure what to do - yet). I think the Toy Camera Print Exchange was long overde and I know there's more Holgaphiles out there. I've got two amazing infrared prints - one from PATS and the other from aj-images, both of whom sadly don't particpate any more. Plus I have some simply amazing prints from the group exchanges that are to many to list.
I enjoy reading through the various notes that have come with these prints. How they were created, what the thought process was, what the workflow was. Nige's note about stealing his kid's idea was excellent. Of course I like the images themselves.
And of course who can forget the Blind Print Exchange where your Secret Santa will send you a print out of the blue one day.
I have, in participating in these print exchanges, a diversity of prints that have enriched my home by making me feel as part of a greater community.
It's not about the materials, it's not even about the images to me, it's about participating.