© Mark LaMonica. All Rights Reserved.
Using film requires you to think more on location and use a careful, rigorous approach to each project because you don't have the luxury of unlimited shots and then looking at an LCD panel to check the results. It takes inner creativity
to visualize what the final output will look like since film sees light differently than we do. Each film has a specific characteristic and will react to the lighting on location differently.  The end result is vivid colors and sharp details so real
you feel like you are actually there. In what seems to be a digital world, there are some clients who will only accept film as the working medium with the benefits of excellent archival properties and being viewed without a computer.

With film we have the original to look at for exposure and color accuracy, so when there is a shift in color or some other post production problem, we can always go back to the original transparency to verify the facts. We can minimize
these problems and post production delays by getting everyone on the same page just like we are trying to do with 100% digital capture. Many offset printers are still operating in the closed loop "old school" technology where they
receive color film and put it on a drum scanner which has been carefully set up and calibrated to their press conditions. The scanner converts RGB to CMYK automatically and all the pre-press work is done in CMYK. The system
works well as long as that offset printer is not having to deal with RGB files generated outside of the shop. Since they always work with the same scanner, there isn't a lot of difficulty getting original image color to match up to their
proofing printer and presses.

The "New Era" of post production dictated by clients now has the the photographer doing the high resolution scans, processing the scan data in a post capture software, adjust, sharpen & color correct the images, handling most all
of the steps of final image preparation formerly the responsibility of the client. In many cases the photographer will handle the entire production from brainstorming to final output. Clients have always willingly paid for the various
production costs associated with film capture, which are, but not limited to film, processing & Polaroids, clip tests, contact sheets, scanning, color correction and couriers to handle transportation of film to finished works. With the
photographer doing the post-production the original never leaves the office and the client doesn't have the liability of damage or loss to the original. So even with film the photographer converts to a modern work-flow with the same
technical knowledge required to be productive in a Digital work-flow and with that knowledge and proper tools, the photographer is able to produce outstanding results for each client. Because of the current lack of RGB support by
offset printers, photographers often have to handle color the management, retouching and Prepress processes. Remember that additional fees apply to each project if the photographer is taking on the additional workflow
processes. If you don’t have the photographer do the additional work, who ever does better have the proper programs to do this. A simple push of the levels and curves doesn't cut it.

Since everything is now data, one of the first things that has to be done is Profiling your monitor. This means that you use a hardware calibration device with supporting software to optimize the monitor brightness and contrast,
neutralize the monitor's display of color, and provide an ICC profile, which will become the default monitor profile used by color-savvy applications. The Default color settings when installed are for Web, which assumes sRGB color
space, and color management turned off. This needs to be changed to U.S. Prepress defaults — at least as a starting point. This changes the working color space to the wider gamut Adobe 1998 color space, and turns color
management on. Your files if worked on and saved in this color space will now be "tagged" as Adobe 1998 files. What this means is that each file will have the Adobe 1998 color space embedded as a profile. This is important,
because in color management, it is important that any profiled device should see that embedded color space profile in order to properly display a file, and then to be able to accurately convert it to any other desired color space, such
as a specific CMYK space. Once profiled, the RGB numbers in a file are changed before they are sent to the video card so that your monitor displays them accurately. Once your monitor has been profiled, you should then check your
Post capture software color settings. Although monitor calibration and profiling is the very least that everyone needs to do far too few clients, agencies, designers and even photographers are taking this seriously.
Traditional Film Photography
Digital Photography is an entirely different process from camera to printed page that requires a different approach for the entire project.

Getting everyone on the same page and having an industry standard on image profiles would be a great start. Every camera and brand specific digital back has their own raw file format and matched post production image editing
software. This creates problems for everyone, Many offset printers are still operating in the closed loop "old school" technology where they receive color film and put it on a drum scanner which has been carefully set up and calibrated
to their press conditions. The scanner converts RGB to CMYK automatically and all the pre-press work is done in CMYK. The system works well as long as that offset printer is not having to deal with RGB files generated outside of the
shop. Since they always work with the same scanner, there isn't a lot of difficulty getting original image color to match up to their proofing printer and presses. They have the original film as a guide to go by, so life is good . . . . Right?  .
. . . Well only if the method of capture was film.

Now we enter the world of Digital Photography where we no longer have the luxury of a piece of film to look at for exposure and color accuracy.

Since everything is now data, one of the first things that has to be done is Profiling your monitor. This means that you use a hardware calibration device with supporting software to optimize the monitor brightness and contrast,
neutralize the monitor's display of color, and provide an ICC profile, which will become the default monitor profile used by color-savvy applications. The Default color settings when installed are for Web, which assumes sRGB color
space, and color management turned off. This needs to be changed to U.S. Prepress defaults — at least as a starting point. This changes the working color space to the wider gamut Adobe 1998 color space, and turns color
management on. Your files if worked on and saved in this color space will now be "tagged" as Adobe 1998 files. What this means is that each file will have the Adobe 1998 color space embedded as a profile. This is important,
because in color management, it is important that any profiled device should see that embedded color space profile in order to properly display a file, and then to be able to accurately convert it to any other desired color space, such
as a specific CMYK space. Once profiled, the RGB numbers in a file are changed before they are sent to the video card so that your monitor displays them accurately. Once your monitor has been profiled, you should then check your
Post capture software color settings. Although monitor calibration and profiling is the very least that everyone needs to do far too few clients, agencies, designers and even photographers are taking this seriously.

Because of the current lack of RGB support by offset printers, photographers often have to handle color the management, retouching and Prepress processes. Remember that additional fees apply to each project if the photographer
is taking on the additional workflow processes. If you don’t have the photographer do the additional work, who ever does better have the proper programs to do this. A simple push of the levels and curves doesn't cut it in the digital
world.

With digital capture, the photographer must handle the "processing", formerly the domain of the lab and print shop. We now process digital data after the capture in a post capture software, adjust, sharpen & color correct the images,
handling most all of the steps of final image preparation formerly the responsibility of the client. In many cases the photographer will handle the entire production from brainstorming to final output. While clients have always willingly
paid for the various production costs associated with film capture -- from film, processing & Polaroids, clip tests, contact sheets, scanning, color correction and couriers to handle transportation of film to finished works and feel with
digital they should only pay a fraction of those costs. Unfortunately some clients push the belief that "since it's digital, it should be free." Be it digital capture or film, clients need to pay the production charges associated with their
projects.
Digital Photography
Since we live and work in a rapidly changing world, some or all of the information in this article could end up being obsolete in time.
Working with film or digital