Book Design and Imaging

Blurb Photos Dark

I just got my first Blurb book in the mail.

Many of the photos are dark. I had them printed out ahead of time (Costco) and the pictures were not dark. Anyone else have this problem with Blurb?
Any suggestions on what to do? I want to order more of the same book.

 Also, I noticed some of the photos were cut off on the edges.

Christina

Replytopic_b_normal
Posted by
lakewriter
Feb 4, 2008 12:47pm PDT
Permalink
lakewriter
 

I also have the problem with dark photos. I work on a calibrated monitor, so I should get books with perfectly exposed images. It is difficult to proces my images a little on the light side because the "darkness-degree" is variable.

Posted by
mortengrathe
Feb 8, 2008 2:05am PDT
Permalink
mortengrathe
 

Yes, mine were dark, too.  I’m not sure how to solve the issue.  The photos look fine on my computer and fine when printed, so it would be a real pain to edit a second set just for blurb.  Oh well!

Posted by
ddonaghe
Feb 8, 2008 9:43am PDT
Permalink
ddonaghe
 

More than two years later, I experience the same thing, also using a calibrated (eizo) monitor. Photos clearly darker, and with higher contrast than what I saw in Lightroom 3.

 I agrre that it isn’t very practical to have to edit one’s photos to anything but their best appearance on screen. Who can come up with a process that allows that – and gives great looking books? Hope Blurb staff voulenteers!!

Posted by
kbqvist
Oct 10, 2010 10:44am PDT
Permalink
kbqvist
 

It’s very difficult to realise that any print on paper can only have about a 30:1 contrast ratio as against the 250+:1 on a computer monitor. This link is worth reading http://www.northlight-images.co.uk/article_pages/colour_management/prints_too_dark.html . I did a test book some time ago and found that the printing was just a little too dark. All that I do now is apply a gentle curve in Photoshop to lift the mid-tones a little and I’m quite happy with the results. paper prints can never fully reproduce the full brightness range that you see on a monitor and we just have to get used to this. I hope that this helps.

Robin

Posted by
robinsinton
Oct 16, 2010 9:44am PDT
Permalink
robinsinton
 

Yes my images were printed too dark also, and I used a calibrated monitor.  I also found that the dark grey pages printed very poorly, so I have to remake my book.  This time I will curve the midtones up and change the dark grey papes to mid grey.  and hope for the best.   I did try the premium lustre paper but didnt like that. so maybe try the regular paper.

Rich

Posted by
rich555
Oct 18, 2010 1:10am PDT
Permalink
rich555
 

Thanks to Robin for providing a link to an excellent article, and  for pointing out the huge difference in contrast range that can be covered on the monitor, vs on print. It certainly helps explain the loss in detail of the graduations from light to dark. Perhaps it even adds to the problem that I’m using really nice hardware calibrated eizo monitor with a very big contrast range, and a 96% coverage of RGB, and the procolor color space in Lightroom 3.

Is the best suggestion we/anyone can come up with, for the time being to have test book printed with suitable testimages to which a small series of lightning curves have been applied? With ‘best’ I probably mean a systematic approach that is garanteed to give the best possible result with a predictable effort. What I hope to avoid is to tryone thing, to find out that it didn’t work very well, and suspect that there must be a better way, leading to tryings something else, etc. etc.

Karsten

Posted by
kbqvist
Nov 3, 2010 12:23pm PDT
Permalink
kbqvist
 

Well, I just got back my second attempt Books.  Turns out that going from a dark grey page to a mid grey page is just as streaky as a dark grey.  So I will never use anything but white for page backgrounds here.  Also the images even when I lightened them on my calibrated monitor are still very dark.  So I am out of here.  Good luck and making a test book in my opinion is Very important, possibling 2 or 3 .  in my opinion.

Posted by
rich555
Nov 4, 2010 10:43am PDT
Permalink
rich555
 

Hi Rich

It all depends upon the content of your images but I’ve used a "rich black" background successfully with no sign of streaks or banding. Rich black formula – C60 M40 Y40 K100. Max ink 240% as per Blurb recommendations. Could be worth a try.

Robin

Posted by
robinsinton
Nov 5, 2010 1:43am PDT
Permalink
robinsinton