Do you hang your photos up in your home? If so, how do you decide what to print?

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So, way back when I first started getting into photography, it seemed very natural to print 8x12s of favorite shots, more or less "as I took them." Two decades and 25,000 Flickr uploads later, nothing that I've shot is currently hanging up in the apartment. I like the idea of having some stuff up, maybe even at really big sizes... it's my major hobby, I'm proud of the work, and goshdarnit, I like looking at them. But feel a little bit of analysis paralysis in terms of where to even begin. I've tinkered and labored over so many picture... how could I pick just a few??

Partly it's just the glut of digital, but I'm sure this has been a question mark for serious hobbysists and pros, going back ages. How do y'all approach this? What kind of heuristics have pushed certain pics to the front of the line for you? Or do you use digital frame things to rotate out what's on display? Any ideas might help me break this little mental logjam, so thanks in advance!

The creator of Ultra Games, for Nintendo (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 15 February 2022 15:34 (two years ago) link

I like the TOP approach of making workprints of ones you like, hanging them up, and seeing which ones stick with you to move on to the next round:

I've told this story before: my habit in 1980–2000 was to develop three rolls of film at a time (35 frames per roll or 105 frames total—I deliberately shot 35 frames per roll instead of 36 or 37 because that's what fit neatly on one 8x10 contact sheet); make contact sheets (one sheet per roll); study the contact sheets with a lighted magnifier; mark between one and six frames on each sheet for workprinting (occasionally more or less if the work really called for it); and batch-produce quick full-frame prints on 8x10 paper from the marked frames. That usually resulted in 18 or fewer workprints per batch of three films.

Here's the interesting part. When I finished the workprints, at first I would think that all the pictures (they're called "images" now—that came in during the '80s and was established by the '90s, but I prefer the word pictures at least with film) were all more or less the same quality. Nothing really to choose between them. But if I taped them to the wall in a spot where I could look at them frequently, an interesting thing would happen, as if by magic. Within four days or so they'd sort themselves out. After a handful of days or or a week had gone by, a few of the pictures would interest me more, and I liked looking at them more, whereas many of the rest I'd simply be done with...they had no more "pull" for me and I just didn't need to see them again. So whereas at first I might have 15 pictures that all seemed pretty good to me, by the end of a week I might have three I really liked and a dozen throwaways.

, Tuesday, 15 February 2022 15:59 (two years ago) link

That makes a lot of sense, and reminds me somewhat of my general editing process in Lightroom. But not having a darkroom or infinite printing dollars, I'm not sure I could really match that up to my situation. I like it as a thing to think on, though.

The creator of Ultra Games, for Nintendo (Doctor Casino), Wednesday, 16 February 2022 23:22 (two years ago) link

one month passes...

(from the same guy)

, Wednesday, 6 April 2022 19:24 (two years ago) link

Thanks for posting that
I’m in a similar position as Doc. I’ve spent hours and hours with my shots, so much so that I fear I’ve lost the ability to see them. And it’s always a surprise when other people look at my stuff. Most of the time they move right past what I consider to be my best shots and pick up on the ones I’d just as soon leave behind.

calstars, Wednesday, 6 April 2022 20:36 (two years ago) link

I don't have enough good photos to make this a difficult decision.

Come to think of it, I might start taking and printing more rapid / candid street photography, just to see how that feels.

The ink for my photo printer is $$$$ though, there's also that.

brisk money (lukas), Wednesday, 6 April 2022 21:13 (two years ago) link

I ordered some prints from one of those cheap online services and they came out really oversaturated. Not sure if the fault of my source or the printing

calstars, Wednesday, 6 April 2022 21:36 (two years ago) link

That Johnston article was a nice read, thank you!

I think for me it's gonna have to start with just printing stuff again, period. I'm making good headway on a long term goal of catching up on a processing/Flickring backlog that opened up, oh, a decade or so ago. Pretty soon I'll be at the milestone I've set for myself to start getting 4x6 prints to go in my little photo albums that make up the visual story of my life. For no one's benefit but mine, but anyway. Feel like getting those physical versions of images might help nudge me towards selecting more "all time favorite shots" or what have you.

Doctor Casino, Wednesday, 6 April 2022 22:40 (two years ago) link

Anyone know a good service for prints beyond snapfish etc?

calstars, Thursday, 7 April 2022 12:30 (two years ago) link


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