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Author Topic: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?  (Read 11744 times)

kirispupis

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Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« on: December 19, 2013, 10:15:57 AM »
Hello everyone,

I recently started my own photography business where I sell my prints - typically canvas or metal.  Two weeks ago I held my first exhibition and I am about to talk to several interested local establishments about displaying my work.

In order for this to work financially, I need a company that is willing to print at a decent cost.  I do not have the budget, nor will my wife give me permission, to buy a large format printer.  Besides, my metal prints are becoming more possible - which requires a far more expensive printer.  Therefore I like to send everything out.  However, my current prices cannot withstand the printing costs of places like MPixPro and Bay Photo - who I am sure do excellent work.

The canvas prints are the easy part.  I know of many online solutions and I have friends locally who will print for a low price.  The metal prints are more challenging.

Until now I have been working with pictureitoncanvas.  They are just starting out as well.  Their web site is maddening to work with and needs drastic improvement, but I took the opinion that since I was beginning my business, I would have some patience with them while they started theirs.  I used coupons to make my initial prints affordable and they offer a set discount to pro photographers on their site.  When I applied for that discount - sending them my business info + resellers certificate, they never responded.  Several times I have called customer support and they have told me that 100% I will hear back the next day. This is despite the fact that I have already given them a decent amount of business - ~50 prints so far.

I am now at the point that I need to replace them as a supplier.  If they cannot at least look at my file and/or call me back then I cannot rely on them as a business partner.

Would anyone know of a company who prints in metal, has a decent web site for ordering, and provides a discount to pro photographers?
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Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« on: December 19, 2013, 10:15:57 AM »

awinphoto

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2013, 10:28:19 AM »
Bay Photo all the way...  There are some other labs i've used, but the prints are either not as crisp or just lacking in umph...  My clients love 'em
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awinphoto

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2013, 10:31:31 AM »
http://www.bayphoto.com/metalprints/  They have a Roes ordering system, so you install the free software on your computer, get approved for an account, and then you order your stuff... The economy roes is cheaper but you have to ensure your files are color corrected and ready to print as is.  The full roes system is more $ but they color correct and make sure it's nails. 
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surapon

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2013, 10:35:33 AM »
Hello everyone,

I recently started my own photography business where I sell my prints - typically canvas or metal.  Two weeks ago I held my first exhibition and I am about to talk to several interested local establishments about displaying my work.

In order for this to work financially, I need a company that is willing to print at a decent cost.  I do not have the budget, nor will my wife give me permission, to buy a large format printer.  Besides, my metal prints are becoming more possible - which requires a far more expensive printer.  Therefore I like to send everything out.  However, my current prices cannot withstand the printing costs of places like MPixPro and Bay Photo - who I am sure do excellent work.

The canvas prints are the easy part.  I know of many online solutions and I have friends locally who will print for a low price.  The metal prints are more challenging.

Until now I have been working with pictureitoncanvas.  They are just starting out as well.  Their web site is maddening to work with and needs drastic improvement, but I took the opinion that since I was beginning my business, I would have some patience with them while they started theirs.  I used coupons to make my initial prints affordable and they offer a set discount to pro photographers on their site.  When I applied for that discount - sending them my business info + resellers certificate, they never responded.  Several times I have called customer support and they have told me that 100% I will hear back the next day. This is despite the fact that I have already given them a decent amount of business - ~50 prints so far.

I am now at the point that I need to replace them as a supplier.  If they cannot at least look at my file and/or call me back then I cannot rely on them as a business partner.

Would anyone know of a company who prints in metal, has a decent web site for ordering, and provides a discount to pro photographers?

Dear Kirispupis.
I am not the PRO, But I use my BEST PRODUCTS/ BEST COMPANY where located in my Home State, North Carolina . This " AluminArte MFG." are the best that I highly recommend to you.  Good  Price and Fantastic  3D. Look Picture on Aluminum Plate.
Enjoy
Surapon

http://www.imagewizards.net/

awinphoto

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2013, 10:42:31 AM »
Hello everyone,

I recently started my own photography business where I sell my prints - typically canvas or metal.  Two weeks ago I held my first exhibition and I am about to talk to several interested local establishments about displaying my work.

In order for this to work financially, I need a company that is willing to print at a decent cost.  I do not have the budget, nor will my wife give me permission, to buy a large format printer.  Besides, my metal prints are becoming more possible - which requires a far more expensive printer.  Therefore I like to send everything out.  However, my current prices cannot withstand the printing costs of places like MPixPro and Bay Photo - who I am sure do excellent work.

The canvas prints are the easy part.  I know of many online solutions and I have friends locally who will print for a low price.  The metal prints are more challenging.

Until now I have been working with pictureitoncanvas.  They are just starting out as well.  Their web site is maddening to work with and needs drastic improvement, but I took the opinion that since I was beginning my business, I would have some patience with them while they started theirs.  I used coupons to make my initial prints affordable and they offer a set discount to pro photographers on their site.  When I applied for that discount - sending them my business info + resellers certificate, they never responded.  Several times I have called customer support and they have told me that 100% I will hear back the next day. This is despite the fact that I have already given them a decent amount of business - ~50 prints so far.

I am now at the point that I need to replace them as a supplier.  If they cannot at least look at my file and/or call me back then I cannot rely on them as a business partner.

Would anyone know of a company who prints in metal, has a decent web site for ordering, and provides a discount to pro photographers?

Dear Kirispupis.
I am not the PRO, But I use my BEST PRODUCTS/ BEST COMPANY where located in my Home State, North Carolina . This " AluminArte MFG." are the best that I highly recommend to you.  Good  Price and Fantastic  3D. Look Picture on Aluminum Plate.
Enjoy
Surapon

http://www.imagewizards.net/

Interesting Lab, just took a look... it appears their smallest size they do is 16x20?  and at that, it is $130?  Holy crap, there's better options than that for pro's.  For Non-Pro's, one lab that is pretty good and offers great rates is adoramapix  They are associated with the adorama store in NY, rates you cant beat...  quality is usually pretty good... 
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surapon

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2013, 02:21:38 PM »
Hello everyone,

I recently started my own photography business where I sell my prints - typically canvas or metal.  Two weeks ago I held my first exhibition and I am about to talk to several interested local establishments about displaying my work.

In order for this to work financially, I need a company that is willing to print at a decent cost.  I do not have the budget, nor will my wife give me permission, to buy a large format printer.  Besides, my metal prints are becoming more possible - which requires a far more expensive printer.  Therefore I like to send everything out.  However, my current prices cannot withstand the printing costs of places like MPixPro and Bay Photo - who I am sure do excellent work.

The canvas prints are the easy part.  I know of many online solutions and I have friends locally who will print for a low price.  The metal prints are more challenging.

Until now I have been working with pictureitoncanvas.  They are just starting out as well.  Their web site is maddening to work with and needs drastic improvement, but I took the opinion that since I was beginning my business, I would have some patience with them while they started theirs.  I used coupons to make my initial prints affordable and they offer a set discount to pro photographers on their site.  When I applied for that discount - sending them my business info + resellers certificate, they never responded.  Several times I have called customer support and they have told me that 100% I will hear back the next day. This is despite the fact that I have already given them a decent amount of business - ~50 prints so far.

I am now at the point that I need to replace them as a supplier.  If they cannot at least look at my file and/or call me back then I cannot rely on them as a business partner.

Would anyone know of a company who prints in metal, has a decent web site for ordering, and provides a discount to pro photographers?

Dear Kirispupis.
I am not the PRO, But I use my BEST PRODUCTS/ BEST COMPANY where located in my Home State, North Carolina . This " AluminArte MFG." are the best that I highly recommend to you.  Good  Price and Fantastic  3D. Look Picture on Aluminum Plate.
Enjoy
Surapon

http://www.imagewizards.net/

Interesting Lab, just took a look... it appears their smallest size they do is 16x20?  and at that, it is $130?  Holy crap, there's better options than that for pro's.  For Non-Pro's, one lab that is pretty good and offers great rates is adoramapix  They are associated with the adorama store in NY, rates you cant beat...  quality is usually pretty good...

Dear awinphoto :

From Their Web site :  http://www.imagewizards.net/
"Min size 12" x 20" or 20" x 12"
Max size 48" x 96" or 96" x 48"
Horizontal or Vertical orientation."

I use Their Products for 3 years Size 48" X 96 ", and display in my Design Courthouse for the Public, = A++ beautiful Product. Sorry, I forget The Cost of this 48" X 96 " , Because It was place the order from my Clients, The County Board of Commissioners.

Yes, We can buy No Name Brand , Made in China 82 mm CPL Filter = 18 US Dollars ( Amazon), or  same size B+W  Kaesemann  for 190 US Dollars From B&H----Yes Similar Glass, But I buy B+W from B&H  for my Canon TS-E 24 MM. F/ 3.5 L MK II.
Surapon

Surapon
« Last Edit: December 19, 2013, 02:43:50 PM by surapon »

charlesbanke

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2013, 02:44:21 PM »
It is hard to beat BayPhoto, their prices are higher than one would want, but when it comes to quality and ESPECIALLY customer service, they can not be beat.  Just yesterday I received a metal print from them for a gallery I am featured in, one of my rounded corners came in a little bent, I emailed them with a few photos, and they Immediately put in a reorder for me free of charge.  Amazing customer service 
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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2013, 02:44:21 PM »

lescrane

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2013, 03:27:21 PM »
Try zenfolios metal print partner, Ivoke.
I'm just starting with aluminum prints.  I sent an image to Bay Photo, was happy w/the print but too much $$$ for me to make a profit. Good service, but I don't like the way they charge a la carte..eg extra for round corners.

I sent exact same file through Zenfolio. less $$$. exact same IQ.  I admit the mounting material on the back was not as good, but that's ok w/me.  Both these co's had good customer service and resp. to questions so I'm not knocking Bay Photo, but the O.P. was concerned with price and anyone who resells must try to get the best price w/o losing IQ.

cayenne

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2013, 04:01:30 PM »
I was on a CreativeLive class recently, and I heard good things about this site and I"m tempted to give them a try with an image or two:

http://www.whcc.com/products

HTH,

cayenne

kirispupis

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2013, 04:18:34 PM »
Try zenfolios metal print partner, Ivoke.
I'm just starting with aluminum prints.  I sent an image to Bay Photo, was happy w/the print but too much $$$ for me to make a profit. Good service, but I don't like the way they charge a la carte..eg extra for round corners.

I sent exact same file through Zenfolio. less $$$. exact same IQ.  I admit the mounting material on the back was not as good, but that's ok w/me.  Both these co's had good customer service and resp. to questions so I'm not knocking Bay Photo, but the O.P. was concerned with price and anyone who resells must try to get the best price w/o losing IQ.

Thanks for letting me know about this.  I have been digging around myself a bit and ivoke does look interesting.  I can also easily integrate this if I upgrade my Zenfolio account.  The plus for Bayphoto though is they seem to have a lot more variety - they print larger on metal and have more variety in canvas.
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jointdoc

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2013, 04:34:49 PM »
I don't know where you live.  I would check the local labs and go talk to them directly.  If there is no one close then try the suggestions by everyone else in this post.  There are many local labs in my area and they do good work at good prices and since they are local I can pick up the prints or get them overnight by regular mail.  If I don't like what their product they reprint.  Are you talking about metallic paper or printing on metal.  Printing on metal is going to be expensive because the metal plates are expensive.  My local lab will cut metal plates to custom size and add mounting etc.  They use a tranfer process with a heat press.
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Eagle Eye

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #11 on: December 31, 2013, 06:44:33 PM »
I've used Alumiprint in the past. Ridiculously professional. They'll call you to follow up on the image and will work on the image for you (in consultation with you) to optimize it for metal print. Printing and shipping were fast. The workmanship is top notch. I've used Aluminyze before, and they're great for a gallery. For a display print in a client's home, I think Alumiprint's the way to go.
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RGF

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2014, 12:29:52 PM »
I have used Aspen Photo (Calif) and had good results from them.

Not sure how their prices compare, I good a special from them and their cs was very helpful since it was my first time printing on metal

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #12 on: January 01, 2014, 12:29:52 PM »

tolusina

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #13 on: January 01, 2014, 05:43:27 PM »
....

.....my own photography business where I sell my prints.....
......However, my current prices cannot withstand the printing costs .....
There are three ways that a blacksmith deserves hell.
1) Too much heat.
2) Too little heat.
3) Not charging enough.
---
From your posts it sounds to me as though you under value your work.
Suggest you re-evaluate your business plan with a view to charging more, maybe significantly more than what you charge now.
 
Seriously, buyers of fine art quality prints suitable for living room or public display don't (or shouldn't) expect to purchase for peanuts.
Often, the opposite is true, prospective buyers pass on the lowest priced items thinking there must be something defective for the price to be so low. Future bragging rights can also be a factor.
 
For sure we cannot expect to start at the top of the market, it does seem folly to hope to succeed financially if starting at the bottom.
 
Raise your prices to at least the point where BayPhoto's prices are no longer an issue, add enough to cover your other costs, add more for your profit, repeat.
 
 
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myrawrty

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2018, 12:52:54 PM »
I know this thread is years old but it ranks pretty high in google for metal prints and so much has changed over the years I thought it would be good to provide some information to others who may stumble on this thread and get some current information so they have some direction so they don't have to learn by trial and error like I have.

Like many, I have been using bayphoto for years for my metal prints because they have a reputation, and they have been doing it for longer than anyone else.  I have used bayphoto successfully and had no complaints until they just got so big and small issues starting cropping up here and there.  Increased amount of imperfections in the coating of the metal, packages arriving damaged, and at first they would replace my prints without much fuss and then they started wanting me to accept these imperfections saying they were part of the process and there was nothing they can do.  The quality control just started going downhill and I get it, they probably got too big to accomodate a smaller artist like myself.

I started asking around at the local artshows that I presented my work at as more and more artists started showcasing metal and I started getting feedback on the labs they used.  The highest quality I saw was blazing which advertises themselves as a boutique and I started using them and they have been great, making sure to give me amazing support and the end product was just lightyears beyond bayphoto ever provided.

However, this came at a cost, their pricing was just too high for me to remain competitive, my pricing was much higher than other artists and my sales started plummeting.

I learned that the metal you want to be using is branded as "chromaluxe HD metal" or some labs simply call it "HD Metal prints" and it uses 1mm thick aluminum panels and the prints are infused into a coating using the dye sublimation process.  I went to the chromaluxe website and was able to find many labs local to me and thats how I eventually stumbled upon imagewizards.com and https://shinyprints.com.  I use both labs depending on the mount and size option as they both give me amazing professional pricing.

My best advice to anyone looking for a metal print lab is to go here:  https://www.chromaluxe.com/where-to-buy/ and find a lab closest to you and call them to see how they can accomodate your needs.  I find that local labs are willing to give a much greater discount if you can pickup your prints in person.

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Re: Advice on metal print companies who deal with pros?
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2018, 12:52:54 PM »