Digital Photography Shortens Production Cycle
Film scanning also is eliminated, and the image file is quickly converted from RGB (red, green, blue) to CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and black) and entered into the proofing cycle. The workflow becomes measured in days instead of weeks. For one customer, re-engineering the workflow, including the move to digital photography, reduced the length of its schedule by 30 percent.
And if the imagery is for Web use, turnaround can be measured in minutes. Shoot the image digitally; send it to the art director for approval via the Internet, crop it to size, and place it on your Web site.
The Technology Looks Good, But …
A few things are holding back complete acceptance of digital photography. For example, most professional-grade digital cameras must be tethered to a computer. Those location shoots in Belize just are not as much fun with a wire hanging off the camera and the assistant getting sand in the CD drive.
In on-figure fashion work in which single-shot, digital cameras are used, moiré is a potential problem. Fortunately, moiré, which also occurs in traditional photography, can be corrected in the prepress process.
Film transparencies can be scanned to a much-larger size at a higher resolution. With digital photography, enlargements greater than 200 percent run the risk of pixelation. If the image will be for a billboard or the side of a truck, film will give you a better reproduction.
The good news: These issues are being addressed, and improvements continue rapidly. Wireless transmission from camera to local computer will combine with on-camera data storage to free the shooter from the digital tether. Single-shot cameras will continue to improve and provide greater capture resolution. Equipment costs will continue to decrease.
Are People Holding Digital Back?
To maximize the benefit brought by a change, it’s vital to connect with all of your staff in the workflow. Today’s professionals understand and accept the value of technology—they see it as another tool to enhance their creative skills.