I only know a few who actually print all the images in the editions, due to fame, finances and time. Ed Burtynsky is my hero when it comes to workflow, I have watched
him for over 24 years now and am amazed at his continued excellence. There are others but he is quite significant and someone to watch.
I have limited to 10 because I feel that knowing the number of images I have, and the fact I own all the equipment to logically print out my work, I am
challenging myself to actually start printing out the images I have grown to like and exhibit.
I think it may sound completly silly to some to have a room full of boxes that archivally store up to thousands of prints that I intend to print.
Even if I end up with 1000 images I want to print, we are talking about 12000 prints, not to mention the expense of separation film to make the colour carbons.
I would have kept it to 5, but in some cases, it takes a year or two seeing different versions before you are happy with your interpretation of an image.
It does not mean your first attempts were bad, its a confidence thing, so therefore I am mixing the looks within an edition and letting the buyer decide which one they like.
Re printing out the edition before you kick the bucket.
What silly ass in his right mind would do such a thing, but then I remember the **build it and they will come** line of thinking and if I do not do it.*** A full time printmaker** then who would? This will take me the rest of my life to finish, but I have a great person Laura my wife behind me and she is doing the same thing , so it makes sense in my family.
I see your pain about images you sold earlier , and yes you do have a dilemma but I think you can come to a workaround, I would be trying to find out who purchased and have an open discussion with them about your editioning dilema.
I have taken stock of all the images I have made, the bulk of the images I have were taken in the last 10 years as the 20 years before I was learning how to cope as a printmaker. Therefore any I have sold I am aware who they are and I have already started the process of informing them of my goals.
Over the next 10 years I plan to exhibit internationally as much as I can financially and physically manage.
If I have any talent , people will buy my work and the silliness will make sense.
If I am a loser and nobody likes my work then , I have the memories of hundreds- thousands of days in the darkroom doing what I love to do.
I do not play golf, I do not play an instrument and my days of hockey and baseball are behind me so I figure its a good plan for me.