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Which paper for headshots?

Durr Wise , Apr 14, 2005; 11:53 a.m.

I shot 60 young actors headshots for a local play with a Canon 20D. I have an Epson 2200 printer. The director wants black and white 8 x 10's. Which paper would look the best for theatrical headshots? Glossy or matte? Just looking for opinion. Thanks.


Marshall Goff , Apr 14, 2005; 11:58 a.m.

Theatrical headshots are almost always glossy. You might be able to use a Lustre paper, but even that may stand out amongst the glossies.

Beau Hooker , Apr 14, 2005; 12:27 p.m.

Hi Durr, The Epson 2200 isn't exactly famous for 1) Printing well with Epson's Premium Glossy Paper and 2) Neutral B&W prints. You might want to try Epson's Semi-Gloss paper and look at something like Quad Tone Rip to produce neutral B&W prints on the 2200. Good luck!

Durr Wise , Apr 14, 2005; 12:35 p.m.

THANKS Beau. I will try some semigloss and try the RIP again. Regards, Durr

bryon mccartney , Apr 14, 2005; 12:36 p.m.

Use Ilford Pearl Semi-Gloss paper, it has an excellent finish and responds well to Epson inks. Producing neutral B/W prints is always easier with a RIP, but these are typically costly. I use Imageprint6 with excellent results on a wide-range of papers on the 2200/ 2100.

David Cunningham , Apr 14, 2005; 01:38 p.m.


i have been a casting director in new york for almost 20 years and i shoot actor's and model's headshots and portfolios from my photography business. i haven't seen a glossy headshot in over ten years. the best paper i have found is ilford gallerie smooth pearl paper. also, the going style is to place a 6x9 image with a black border, either straight or ragged, on 8x10 paper. the trend is to go a bit more on the fashion style, cut of heads, off-center subjects, landscape and portrait orientation. while b&w has been the standard for years, color headshots are becaoming more popular every day. fyi, most repro houses don't want prints to scan any longer. they prefer images to be hi-res jpeg or tiff files, depending on the house.


Marshall Goff , Apr 14, 2005; 05:05 p.m.

Sounds like David's is the voice of more authority on this stuff. I'm a little surprised by the 6x9-on-a-full-page look, but if that's what people are using, that's what they're using...

Steven Clark , Apr 14, 2005; 11:22 p.m.

Keep in mind if you should choose to use Ilford paper that you should use the Gallerie Smooth line rather than the Gallerie Classic line as those are tuned to work with pigment inks.

Durr Wise , Apr 15, 2005; 09:09 a.m.

My thanks to all of you for your advise and helpful thoughts. I will let you know how it turns out.

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