My first A2 print, mounted and framed

A few weeks ago I invested in a  new printer, the Epson 3880, as it is able to produce exceptional black and white prints. It can print pretty well in colour too! One of the other main advantages of this particular model is that it can also print on A2 paper as well. My previous printer would only print to a maximum paper size of A3.

I knew it wouldn’t be long before I would want to test its capability to print large. The timing of my purchase was very fortunate because it coincided with some friends wanting a large print for the study in their house. They selected my image ‘Private keep off’ a monochrome picture of an old boat near Dell Quay in Chichester Harbour.

Private Keep Off
‘Private keep off’

Before I could make a print I had to decide on which photo paper to use. I had been pleased with the results from the Fotospeed test pack but the Platinum Lustre Fine Art paper was going to be a very expensive option. I also very much liked Fotospeed Platinum Matt Fine Art paper, which would not suit all work but for the right image it would be a very good alternative.

Having used Ilford Smooth Pearl paper I decided it would be worth trying a relatively new paper by Ilford – their Galerie Prestige Gold Mono Silk specifically made for black and white prints. I therefore contacted a company called the Online Paper Company to see whether or not they would supply me with an A4 sample sheet which they did. It arrived in the post a couple of days later and I ran a test print and compared the result with some other papers. I decided that in the future this would be my paper of choice so I ordered a pack of A2 and A3 plus, together with an A3 plus pack of Fotospeed Platinum Matt. I believe these papers will serve me well in the future. So will the Online Paper Company – their service was excellent and very efficient.

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Ilford Gold Mono Silk 
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Fotospeed Platinum Matt

I used the Gold Mono Silk to produce my first A2 print. The timer on my iPhone showed that it had taken just under 21 minutes. The result was in my opinion excellent. I was delighted.

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‘Private keep off’ emerges from the printer in just under 21 minutes.

I had already purchased a frame (80cm x 60cm or 31″ x 24″) and the mount card. The finished result is shown below. I included the wall light to try and give a sense of scale.

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Our friends collected the framed photograph and sent an email later in the same day.  I quote ‘Hung up the photo – it looks excellent!’.  I shall look forward to seeing it for myself in the near future.
Big is not necessarily beautiful but a large print in a suitable frame definitely has impact. I am planning to exhibit some of my work in a local Art Trail next year, so I have now bought four more large frames, if only to generate something of a ‘wow’ factor. I now can’t wait before pressing print again and seeing another A2 image slowly emerge from the Epson 3880. The question is which images shall I choose? Decisions, decisions!

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