Saturday, 14 June 2008

Note to self - printing at home

Most of the time, I print the photos I scrap in my printer at home, an HP Photosmart C5180. While sometimes the photo turned out OK, other times what I saw in print looked very different from what I saw in the screen.

I've asked advice and was told that I had to, first, calibrate my monitor, and then use the correct ICC profile for my printer and paper.

I still believe that my monitor is not properly calibrated, but today, after trying and trying I think I got the printer setting working if not perfectly, better. I know I'll forget all the steps so I decided to write it down here. Who knows, it might help someone else who uses PSE and the same printer.

1) On your PC, go to the start menu, select "Printer and Faxes", select your printer and then click on "File" -> "Printing Preferences...".

2) In the Printing Preferences window, select the "Printing shortcuts" tab. Select the proper paper/size configuration. In my case A4 Premium Plus paper. In "Color Management", select "Application Managed colors"

3) Select the "Colors" tab. Under "Color Management" select ICC. Under "Rendering Intent" select "Perceptual". Press "OK".

4) Start PSE, open your file.

5) (optional) Select "Image" -> "Convert Color profile" -> "Apply AdobeRGB profile".

6) Select "File" -> "Print...".

Under colour management you should see:
Color Handling = Photoshop Element Manages Colors
Source Space = AdobeRGB (if you did step 5, or if your photo was already using Adobe RGB)
Rendering Intent = Perceptual

Choose the appropriate profile for your paper/printer. In my case HP PS C6100_C8100 Prem Plus Photo.

7) Print it!

I know that someone with a proper understanding of colour management will finds 100s of holes here, but after spending a ton of paper and ink, this is the best I could manage. If someone reads this, I'll say congratulations, I hope you didn't fall asleep in the meantime, and if you found any errors or have a better way, please please tell me. Thanks!!!


Mandy - Crafty Angel said...

oh thanks so much for this!!! I to found a huge difference between what I opened in pse and what came you of the printer, I just thought it was my funny eyes! lol! Going to give this a go, thanks a mill Elisa!!

eva birdthistle said...

Elisa, this is a great post! After taking a wonderful photo it can often be ruined with our printing (or lack of calibration)/. You're a star!

Dianne said...

Great Advice Elisa, thank you:)

And thank you so much for all your lovely comments on my blogs:)

Carrie said...

Elisa - your photos are amazing and as for the textured photo ones they are totally fabulous irl. Thanks for sharing this but PSE/photoshop is totally alien to me - I can just about load a photo into photbucket lol.