Upon arriving in Portland, I promptly joined Portland Photo Club - PCPDX. Some members had been working on personal projects throughout the year, and while my personal project was not photography-specific, I'd say I completed a rather transformative personal project this summer. I had some photos left over from my trip that didn't fit nicely into the categories of posts I created on my website, so I opted to use them as a personal project submission. While my collection did not get selected for a gallery show, I was given the opportunity to print and mat them for a 1 month slot in our club drawer at Blue Sky Gallery. The whole experience of printing my photos was very useful, and I learned a few things that I want to note for next time:
1. Don't wait until the last minute. This process is much easier when done over the course of a few weeks. I, on the other hand, completed it within about 3-4 days because I left it to the last minute, and then was on a tight timeline. Printing takes 24 hours. Matting takes a few days, if you rush it.
2. Professional printing is expensive. My 10 prints cost around $55. My matting cost $10/photo for a total of $100. Plus some pocket change for parking and printing my project statement. I now understand why we are advised to price our photos at no less than $100.
3. I printed the version of my photo that was exported for screen resolution. When I retrieved my photos, they were a bit pixely, but I couldn't think of anything I did wrong. It wasn't until chatting with my friend who is a photographer that I realized I printed the wrong version of the photos.
I'm glad I participated in the submission process--selecting a collection of photos, creating a project statement, artist statement, and making prints. Had my prints turned out a bit sharper, I would have been overall very pleased. Next time, I will make some adjustments and be more prepared! #firsttimeforeverything #learnfromyourmistakes