Canvas from Hudsons - not just an average print.

Demonstrating the value of using a canvas printer who is expertly colour managed. It's not just about getting the colour right. A simple comparison between a manufacturers default output vs Hudsons' standard output. The difference between an "off the peg" print, and a print from the same equipment, in the hands of experts.

A wise man once commented "it's not the press, it's the pressman".

Browse the internet and see how most canvas printers sell their services to you. The majority will tell you about their recent purchase of a shiny new printer. It's new. It means we must be the best. But when you think about that, it says that we're only as good as our equipment. The thing we shout about most is a machine anyone can buy. To continue that train of thought - you can buy the same quality of work from anyone with this machine. Everyone who owns this machine is the same.

But that really isn't the case. That kit list means little in the canvas world (although we all like bragging about our shiny machines.)

A printer can put ink on a canvas using a setting that shipped with the machine. The machine will print. You'll have a product. How good or bad it is will vary drastically, from "throw it away" through to "saleable".

A printer can put ink on a canvas using a setting that the media supplier has provided. The machine will print. You'll have a product. It will be saleable.

A printer can put ink on a canvas using a bespoke setting that he's expertly written for his machine. You'll have a product, and alongside the two earlier options, it will dazzle you.

But don't take my word for it. Hopefully these photos will get the idea across.

Firstly, here's the the target test image file.

This file, made by our friend and colour guru Mike Adams of Correct Color, is a tif in AdobeRGB 98. The bright headshot is almost the colour chart in image form. The four colour black and white in the top right tests neutrals of all densities (as do the strips at the bottom right), and the solid colour patches give an immediate idea of colour densities.  

This photo is a single piece of canvas printed on my HP5000 with HP83 Pigment inks, clipped to my office wall. We're not in a pro photographer perfectly lit world here, but hopefully the photo is good enough to demonstrate my point.

The top image was printed using the manufacturers profile. Anyone who owns a well looked after HP5000, printing via the same software, using the suppliers output profile, will get a result much like this one. Without going into the what's and why's - lets just say it's pretty weak! 

The bottom image is the same file printed with identical input settings, but using Hudsons' bespoke output profile.

Zoom in on the bottom print for a better look. 

Ours will give you contrast, strong colours, deep detailed shadows, neutrals, deep blues, deep greens, vibrant limes and oranges. Even the print provider's headache - the 4colour B&W image, looks B&W (see top right). I know which canvas I'd want to spend my money on.

So colour management is just about how good the image is? Well yes and no. The printer who's using the manufacturers profile is hopefully going to try and do better. They'll tweak the image, run it again, tweak, run it again. Try various other output settings to try and improve. Eventually, you'll end up with a print that is still not as good, but has taken more material, and more time. They don't give that material and time away. So in many cases not only is our print going to be better, it's going to be better, faster, and it'll save you money. Colour management isn't solely about how accurate the colours are. It's the whole game.

Ultimately, it's about giving you the scope to create artwork that yells for attention, or whispers when needed - knowing the print will hold up its end of the bargain!

Forgive me if I don't shout about our kit list. You're welcome to it if you want it. But if there's shouting to be done I'd like to make it about our colour, and about the expertise that makes our print stand out from the crowd. Remember, both of the prints came from the same shiny machine. But as the wise man said, it's not the press, it's the pressman!