Date   

Re: Freelance Photographers

Alex Lippisch <alippisch@...>
 

Dan Margulis wrote:

Folks,

Sorry for the abbreviated post, I hit the "send" instead of return. Let me
try again.

For a forthcoming column on the state of the market for professional
photographers, I'd appreciate comments from the photographers on this list.

1) At a website run by an association of editorial freelance photographers,
the astounding assertion is made that the typical day rate for such
photographers is the same as it was in 1981, to wit, around $350 a day.
Furthermore, that publishers are now more aggressive in demanding all
rights to images.

The second part I know is true, but can the first part possibly be right?
Have fees generally been that depressed? I'm not limiting this to editorial
work, but to contract work of all kinds. Has it been possible to raise fees
any significant amount over the last decade, say?
Yes it is sad but true.

I do strictly commercial photography and my fees have not gone up at all in
over 10 years. For me this is due to increased competition, greatly increased
use of stock (which is a direct result of the creation of desktop publishing
and the internet), and (as if that wasn't bad enough!) now clients who
have a
digital camera of their own and someone on their staff who can shoot and
produce web sites, sell sheets, etc.



2) I am intending to make certain general factual statements about the
market for independent photographers. If you *disagree* with any of these,
I'd love to know why, and it can go to me privately or to the list as a
whole, whichever you like.

a) The last five years were boom years for virtually every segment of the
graphic arts *except* for professional photographers. Some did well, but
none to my knowledge feel that business was great. A number of those who
did not do well have left the business.
Agree. Everyone I talk to says it has only gotten harder to make a living
doing this. The big studios here in Cleveland Ohio seem to be doing
well, due
I think to their ability to offer in-house drum scanning, digital
imaging with
different cameras, set building, propping, high-end digital output prints,
every kind of lens you can think of, and great lunches.



b) Those who have done well either are at the top quality level, have a
group of three or more photographers, or have branched out into
nontraditional areas, such as taking charge of the client's printing.
Agree, and the pie in the middle has gotten smaller and smaller.



c) Those who insist that all they do is create photographs and that it's up
to somebody else to do the rest are a dying breed.
Agree. In fact they are already almost all gone here. Only the elite national
level photogs can continue to do this.



d) It is not viable to be a professional photographer and not know

Photoshop.
Agree. That's the truth Ruth.



e) Owing to the large number of royalty-free stock CDs on the market, it's
virtually impossible to make a living doing nothing but shooting stock.
Stock sales still exist, of course, but the age of the stock specialist has
past.
Disagree. I know there are people out there who still make most of their
income from stock. But, I wouldn't want to compete with RF discs these days.
If fact they have replaced the bread-and-butter basic shot needs of all
of my
old clients.



f) The market is currently distorted by the fact that no matter how little
someone wants to pay for photography, there's probably some photographer
hungry enough to do it for that price.
Agree. This is old hat, but is getting worse due to all of the above.



Thanks for any feedback, and sorry for the first incomplete post.

Dan Margulis

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Re: Photoshop 6 question

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Things sure are easier now that we have ICC
profiles.

Things sure are easier now that we are living in the 21st century.



Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Andrew Engelhardt
 

I don't save images with any specific thumbnail preview, I think we were referring to thumbnail 'sized' images. Many of our catalogue and flyer images are no larger than 2" at 100%. An embedded ICC profile in this case adds a lot to the file size and at 40,000+... (embedding the "built-in" CMYK from 5.5 added only 1Kb)

Andrew Engelhardt

-----Original Message-----
From: Chris Murphy [mailto:lists@...]
Sent: Tuesday, January 16, 2001 4:13 PM
To: Color theory
Subject: Re: [colortheory] Photoshop 6 question


>Well with that logic, we could talk about the additional gig¹s of space
>required to save a file with the thumbnail. Sure, if you  have 80,000 files,
>you¹re going to need a lot of storage. The question is, what percentage of
>the file itself is the profile?

In the example previously supplied it's anywhere from 90% to 40% of the
file size.

>That being
>the case, I¹d be with you and consider not embedding the profile. But if
>even a fraction are some other colorspace, who¹s to know what file is what?

I think there are ways to deal with this through either a file name
convention, or comments, or grouping similar files together - i.e. all
SWOP separated images go in a separate SWOP location and are marked as
such. It really depends on the archive solution as well.

Needless to say this is yet another good reason for dropping the concept
of a smart ICC profile. Most aren't much more than 400k or so. But I've
seen some edited profiles that were 700k, and Chris Cox at Adobe has a
bunch over 1MB each and even a couple that top 7MB. I think that is
totally insane. Measurement data only profiles with only colorimetric
information in them would be at most 50k and most would be around 20k.

How big is the thumbnail preview?


Chris Murphy

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Re: Photoshop 6 question

Andrew Rodney <andrew@...>
 

on 1/16/01 4:29 PM, Bob Smith at rmsmith@... wrote:

I can see it coming into play more than that.  I just saved a 4x5 300ppi
CMYK file as a High Photoshop 6 JPEG (a typical catalog image).  Its 1200K
with embedded profile.  660k without.  

I just saved the same sized file as a Tiff with no profile and with two different profiles (one using Photoshop 6’s SWOP V2 and one I made in ProfileMaker Pro):

File saved with no profile is 6.8mb and both files with profiles are 7.4mb in size. Not quite a difference when JPEG isn’t coming into play.

Andrew Rodney


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Well with that logic, we could talk about the additional gig¹s of space
required to save a file with the thumbnail. Sure, if you have 80,000 files,
you¹re going to need a lot of storage. The question is, what percentage of
the file itself is the profile?
In the example previously supplied it's anywhere from 90% to 40% of the
file size.

That being
the case, I¹d be with you and consider not embedding the profile. But if
even a fraction are some other colorspace, who¹s to know what file is what?
I think there are ways to deal with this through either a file name
convention, or comments, or grouping similar files together - i.e. all
SWOP separated images go in a separate SWOP location and are marked as
such. It really depends on the archive solution as well.

Needless to say this is yet another good reason for dropping the concept
of a smart ICC profile. Most aren't much more than 400k or so. But I've
seen some edited profiles that were 700k, and Chris Cox at Adobe has a
bunch over 1MB each and even a couple that top 7MB. I think that is
totally insane. Measurement data only profiles with only colorimetric
information in them would be at most 50k and most would be around 20k.

How big is the thumbnail preview?


Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Andrew Rodney <andrew@...>
 

on 1/16/01 3:22 PM, Chris Murphy at lists@... wrote:

>With the exception of prepring files for the web, what’s the difference is a
>few hundred K (at most) larger? The benefit of the embedded profile is well
>worth that small increase in size.

Well I can see why this would be an issue if you work with smaller images
for print, almost thumbnail sized deals, and you have an archive of them.
If you're talking 80,000 files, that's 26 *gigabytes* of embedded
profiles if the profile is 350k each.


Well with that logic, we could talk about the additional gig’s of space required to save a file with the thumbnail. Sure, if you  have 80,000 files, you’re going to need a lot of storage. The question is, what percentage of the file itself is the profile? In most cases, it’s not very much at all. The benefit of having those 80,000 files described with a profile could be a real benefit unless all of them are in the identical colorspace. That being the case, I’d be with you and consider not embedding the profile. But if even a fraction are some other colorspace, who’s to know what file is what?

Andrew Rodney


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Bob Smith <rmsmith@...>
 

Chris Murphy wrote:

Well I can see why this would be an issue if you work with smaller images
for print, almost thumbnail sized deals, and you have an archive of them.
If you're talking 80,000 files, that's 26 *gigabytes* of embedded
profiles if the profile is 350k each.

I can see it coming into play more than that. I just saved a 4x5 300ppi
CMYK file as a High Photoshop 6 JPEG (a typical catalog image). Its 1200K
with embedded profile. 660k without. I have one client that archives
gazillions of images exactly this way. You're talking about almost doubling
drive space to include an embedded profile in every image. In my operation
a few hundred K for an embedded profile is no big deal and well worth the
almost nonexistent effort, but I can certainly see where it might be for
some.

Looks like we have the makings of a new color management conspiracy theory.
It's the drive manufacturers that are really behind the push for profile
embedding.

Bob Smith


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

With the exception of prepring files for the web, what¹s the difference is a
few hundred K (at most) larger? The benefit of the embedded profile is well
worth that small increase in size.
Well I can see why this would be an issue if you work with smaller images
for print, almost thumbnail sized deals, and you have an archive of them.
If you're talking 80,000 files, that's 26 *gigabytes* of embedded
profiles if the profile is 350k each.


Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Andrew Engelhardt
 

That 'small' increase in size (700k in Windows) adds a substantial amount in file size when you have a server holding 40,000+ images.
 - Andrew

-----Original Message-----
From: Andrew Rodney [mailto:andrew@...]
Sent: Tuesday, January 16, 2001 1:46 PM
To: Andrew Engelhardt; 'colortheory@...'
Subject: Re: [colortheory] Photoshop 6 question

on 1/16/01 2:16 PM, Andrew Engelhardt at aengelhardt@... wrote:

Sorry to bring this up again, but I just realized that PS6 forces you to save your custom CMYK set-up as an ICC profile (no choice anymore), therefore if you are embedding profiles rather than just the old "built-in", a 'smallish' file size is definitely going to balloon.

- Andrew

With the exception of prepring files for the web, what's the difference is a few hundred K (at most) larger? The benefit of the embedded profile is well worth that small increase in size.

Andrew Rodney


Re: profile Frontier

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Ralph Tomaccio writes:

First I need clarification about your posting about the practices of
Miller's Imaging:

1.) they are using sRGB (instead of the "no convert" option) in Frontier

2.) "Then when the file arrives at the lab, they will assign the
printer profile as Miller's is supposedly doing."


Does Frontier allow you to specify an output profile? I was under the
impression it didn't use ICC profiles. That if you selected sRGB in
Frontier that it would use an internal method to convert the data from
sRGB to the device-space.

Could you be a little more constructive in your comments?
The point is that given the situation, you *can't* be more constructive.

If one is using a
lab that requires any specific color workspace, in this case sRGB, how can
one improve upon the situation to get better results?
You can't. They are limiting the maximum capability of their device.


I've already pounded
my
head against the wall trying to get them to understand the limitations of
sRGB. To some extent, if not all, I tend to think it's Fuji who is pushing
this sRGB thing on labs.
This wouldn't exactly surprise me, but I haven't heard anything to
confirm this is so. Maybe Andrew has heard something.


Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Andrew Rodney <andrew@...>
 

on 1/16/01 2:16 PM, Andrew Engelhardt at aengelhardt@... wrote:

Sorry to bring this up again, but I just realized that PS6 forces you to save your custom CMYK set-up as an ICC profile (no choice anymore), therefore if you are embedding profiles rather than just the old "built-in", a 'smallish' file size is definitely going to balloon.

- Andrew

With the exception of prepring files for the web, what’s the difference is a few hundred K (at most) larger? The benefit of the embedded profile is well worth that small increase in size.

Andrew Rodney


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Sorry to bring this up again, but I just realized that PS6 forces you to
save your custom CMYK set-up as an ICC profile (no choice anymore),
therefore if you are embedding profiles rather than just the old "built-in",
a 'smallish' file size is definitely going to balloon.
Yeah that was my point. This is an important issue because Photoshop 6
only uses the larger table based Lab profiles. XYZ profiles are not
common at all and actually I think the only app that created them was
Photoshop 5.

They are highly compressible. But as I mentioned before, for archiving if
there is a way to use a naming structure to denote the profile that
applies to the image, or as a comment, or some other way to group like
images - that's what I would do to save space.


Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Andrew Engelhardt
 

Sorry to bring this up again, but I just realized that PS6 forces you to save your custom CMYK set-up as an ICC profile (no choice anymore), therefore if you are embedding profiles rather than just the old "built-in", a 'smallish' file size is definitely going to balloon.

 - Andrew

-----Original Message-----
From: Darren Bernaerdt [mailto:darren@...]
Sent: Monday, January 15, 2001 2:44 PM
To: 'colortheory@...'
Subject: RE: [colortheory] Photoshop 6 question



>The workaround is to start with a setup that originated
>in an earlier version, and edit that.

That necessitates manually opening each image and resaving. I think a
more practical solution is to save out the setting from *any* version of
Photoshop as an ICC profile and use an AppleScript (even the one that
comes pre-built with ColorSync) and embed that into all legacy CMYK
images that have this bizarre behavior; while simultaneously setting the
same physical file as the CMYK working space. This will be fast and easy
because images don't actually have to be opened using an AppleScript,
whereas doing it in Photoshop one by one will require this.

If I can add one last thing to this very long thread - my employer has an
database of images we have shot over the years that numbers approximately
60,000 to 80,000 files (maybe more by now, I haven't checked lately). These
are all CMYK and have been saved in the EPS format with JPEG compression.
They are an archive of shots to be used as "pick-ups" for a bi-weekly flyer
that contains images seldom larger than 3x4 inches, most of them far
smaller than that. The resulting file sizes are usually in the neighborhood
of 0.5MB to 1.5MB.

When dealing with such small file sizes, the information you embed in the
file can drastically alter the final file size. Case in point:

RGB image - 54Kb, converted to CMYK three different ways:
Using "built-in" option: final file size is 78Kb
Using "tables" option with an ICC file generated from the built-in CMYK
setup: final file size is 454Kb
Using "ICC" option and using the same ICC file in the previous version:
final file size is 775Kb
(Tests done under Photoshop 5.5)

Obviously this isn't an issue for those users that have smaller volumes of
large files. In my situation, this could add Gigabytes worth of information
to our database of images. This was one of the primary reasons to use the
built-in option and save that information, then load it under the
"built-in" option. Our files were tagged with a descriptor of the printing
conditions the image was converted for. When a large number of users have
access to the images, it provided a good "flag" so that a file converted
for a high quality coated stock on a sheetfed press wasn't inadvertently
used in our flyer (printed on newsprint on a web press).

Darren Bernaerdt




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Re: Photoshop 6 bug?

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

I can't replicate this error (PS6, OS 9.1). At a guess, your desktop and/or
Finder prefs and/or Photoshop prefs are toast. Since the Finder is also
quitting, try ditching your Finder prefs first, then reboot and rebuild your
desktop at the same time. If the error still occurs, ditch your PS prefs as
well.
Yeah I've tried all that to no avail. It must be some extension related
thing.


Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Dan Margulis
 

Andrew Engelhardt writes,

<< I don't save images with any specific thumbnail preview, I think we were

referring to thumbnail 'sized' images. Many of our catalogue and flyer

images are no larger than 2" at 100%. An embedded ICC profile in this case

adds a lot to the file size and at 40,000+... (embedding the "built-in" CMYK

from 5.5 added only 1Kb) >>

In a similar situation in the early 1990s, we solved the problem by having
the bottom two rows of pixels in the image be of a specific color to indicate
that normal assumptions about the image wouldn't hold. This actually made the
JPEG size marginally smaller. Things sure are easier now that we have ICC
profiles.

Dan Margulis


Re: Photoshop 6 bug?

Tara Keezer <taralynnk@...>
 

on 1/16/01 9:52 AM, Chris Murphy wrote:

When I have a bitmap file (Mode:Bitmap) as an open document and click
"Save As" I get a strange message from Photoshop about an unexpected
error occuring and when I click the OK button, Photoshop quits and the
Finder quits and restarts, quits and restarts.

This has happened to me with 100% reproducibility, but only with bitmap
images. Very strange.
I can't replicate this error (PS6, OS 9.1). At a guess, your desktop and/or
Finder prefs and/or Photoshop prefs are toast. Since the Finder is also
quitting, try ditching your Finder prefs first, then reboot and rebuild your
desktop at the same time. If the error still occurs, ditch your PS prefs as
well.

Tara


Photoshop 6 bug?

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

Not exactly a color theory question but everyone pretty much uses
Photoshop, so:

When I have a bitmap file (Mode:Bitmap) as an open document and click
"Save As" I get a strange message from Photoshop about an unexpected
error occuring and when I click the OK button, Photoshop quits and the
Finder quits and restarts, quits and restarts.

This has happened to me with 100% reproducibility, but only with bitmap
images. Very strange.


Chris Murphy


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Bob Smith <rmsmith@...>
 

Darren Bernaerdt wrote:

When dealing with such small file sizes, the information you embed in the
file can drastically alter the final file size. Case in point:
Yes, an embedded CMYK profile in each image can amount to a sizeable chunk
of data in your situation. I use CMYK JPEGs for email or FTP transfer of
images. That's one of the few situations where I don't embed; and its for
size considerations. The embedded profile can easily be larger than the
image. I posted a handful of images on an FTP site yesterday and just put
the profile as a separate download rather than including it in every image.
You raise a valid consideration.

Bob Smith


Re: Proofing with an inkjet printer

Bob Smith <rmsmith@...>
 

Glover, Ry wrote:

PressReady to achieve a reasonable paper color proof. I realize that
PressReady has been discontinued but it might still meet my needs, coupled
with, say, an Epson 1270 machine and Mac OS 8.6 or 9.

On the other hand, I understand that iProof Systems (formerly Birmy?)
produces a postscript RIP that they are still supporting.
I own and use PressReady extensively on a 1270. I own an older version of
the Birmy RIP for an Epson EX. I pretty much agree with the response you
got from Chris. PressReady works quite well with the 1270. Its definitely
version 1 software and its not going to get any better. If you can live
with that I think its well worth the investment. The few bugs or quirks
that PressReady presents are not that difficult to deal with. Right out of
the box, it will give pretty good simulations of some common press
conditions. Custom profiling will produce prints that are an amazingly
accurate simulation of more typical contract proofs.

I had been running PressReady on an old G3 upgraded 7600. Since switching
to a new G4 many of my more annoying problems with it vanished. Its a good
product with the potential to be a really great one. Its a shame to see
Adobe let it die.

Bob Smith


Re: Photoshop 6 question

Chris Murphy <lists@...>
 

RGB image - 54Kb, converted to CMYK three different ways:
Using "built-in" option: final file size is 78Kb
Using "tables" option with an ICC file generated from the built-in CMYK
setup: final file size is 454Kb
Using "ICC" option and using the same ICC file in the previous version:
final file size is 775Kb
(Tests done under Photoshop 5.5)

This is actually an important issue. Photoshop 6 only uses Lab table
based ICC profiles, not the smaller XYZ profiles in Photoshop 5.5.

If it's possible to archive these images within classifications or use
them in limited workflow where a certain profile can be ASSUMED (or
specified on a work order) instead of embedded, this would save storage
space.

Profile size is but one reason why I don't like the current ICC format.
There is a lot of unnecessary information in output device profiles that
does more than just describe the behavior of a given device. It could be
so much smaller if it contained measurement data only.


Chris Murphy