Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Hahnemühle Photo Rag (updated twice)

I've bought some heavy-weight art/photo print paper, the highly regarded Hahnemühle Photo Rag, for my prints, not the least my BW prints.
I bought it at the company linked above. Here are some interesting points:
  • I somehow managed to get the paper (50 sheets A3, 308grams) more than thirty Pounds Sterling cheaper than the price they quote here, £144 (the latter also seems to be the typical price). I found that via Amazon UK, but I can't find it now. One has to be on the lookout for good offers in the Internet age!
  • Excellent service, I got UPS shipment for only five pounds, and the packaging was exemplary: bubble-wrap on all six sides around the big box of paper. Lovely.
  • The paper really is something, thick and stiff, and though pretty smooth, with a very tactile feel. I'm looking forward to seeing prints on it.

... Hahnemühle, there's a company which knows how to move with the times: apparently they've been in the paper business for over 400 years, and yet right now they are in the forefront of high-end inkjet paper. Good going.

Update: my very first attempt at a B/W print on this paper is very beautiful. And that's just printed straight with a color printer and no special settings. The print I'd made earlier of the sink on glossy Canon paper, I consider very good. But the Hahnemühle paper print seems to have more light, more "zing" in it somehow. Hard to pin down. It could be just that the highlights print a bit lighter on it.

Pascal said:
Speaking of large sheet, is this brand good for printing tabloids? By its name, sounds so. "Photo rag", seems like a clear slogan...

You're probably kidding, but nevertheless, I should interject that "rag" refers to the fact that cheap paper (like the stuff newspapers are printed on) is made from trees, it is acidic and it yellows and crumbles soon. High quality paper is made from cotton, often from shredded cotton rags, I'm not sure why rags instead of from cotton more directly, but that's the reference.

Update: funny enough I just now read that my Canon printer can't take papers above 270 grams per square meter. Lucky I didn't know that before I successfully printed on 308 grams paper!


Michael Burton said...

You saved £30 on 50 sheets of paper?

I can't afford any kind of paper that I could save so much money on.

Eolake Stobblehouse said...

I hear ya, it's not friggin' cheap paper.
But it's never been a cheap hobby.

... Well, it can be, today. If one only needs to publish on the web, only needs only the price of a decent pair of shoes on the camera, and then hardly anything else.

Anonymous said...

The paper. You have moved to the next step in your B&W printing.

One suggestion; try the sampler packs from different manufacturers before you buy a full box of any given type . Gives you a good look at their line of goods. You usually get 2 or more sheets of each variety and they can range from high gloss, to water color, to exotic in each set. When you find one you like the looks of, then start buying the boxes.

My current color go-to paper is Ilford Galerie Smooth Pearl. For B&W it is Harman gloss FB AI or the the matt when it seems right.

If you can get it, check out Moab Papers. Excellent paper with funky southwest US names.

Enjoy the adventure.


Pascal [P-04referent] said...

Well, it IS A3 paper... Big sheets.
Speaking of large sheet, is this brand good for printing tabloids? By its name, sounds so. "Photo rag", seems like a clear slogan...

"only needs only the price of a decent pair of shoes on the camera, and then hardly anything else."
Emulating Laurie Jeffery in nudist photography?
The rest of us usually bother to also buy clothes, not just shoes!

Eolake Stobblehouse said...

(Re "rag", post is updated.)

Pascal [P-04referent] said...

Probably because recycled cotton is cheaper, yet of closely equivalent quality.

Yes, I was joking. And yet, isn't it funny how slang (in French too) calls a bad newspaper "a rag"?
Probably because that's the most useful use it is deemed for.

A rather interesting thought, that rag issue.
Me, I always respect my rags. They're highly cooperative and efficient helpers.
I respect all my tools.

During the early stages of building our house, the Syrian workers who slept on the site found a stray female puppy, and took her in. They named her "Thatcher". A political statement, of course, implying that the Iron Woman was "a b**ch".
My father commented to me in private: "I would never name my dog after someone I despise. Dogs are loyal and deserve more respect than that."
Words of a wise man. :-)

Still, that pup DID have something in common with the former British Prime Minister. She befriended a similar-looking stray male when she was grown, and one day, I saw HER mounting HIM! Such a pity I didn't have my camera that day.
I think it WAS said about Maggie that "she's the only person in the British Govt to have b@££$". :-)

Pascal [P-04referent] said...

You'll notice how prettily I have written that last word. :-)

Richard Bingham said...

Yes, the Hahnemühle papers are superb: I get mine from Fotospeed (www.fotospeed.com) who do some pretty good papers of their own which are a bit cheaper. As Steve said, get sampler packs before you commit to a big outlay on A3 size paper.

Fotospeed are also stockists of the Canson range of papers (made in France) which are even more costly than Hahnemühle, but absolutely fabulous - try Canson Arches Aquarelle Rag - it is superb at retaining shadow detail, but you need a second mortgage to buy the stuff!

Eolake Stobblehouse said...

Thanks, Richard.

Hmm, Aquarelle means watercolor. I wonder if it's related to the Arches watercolor paper I used to buy?