As I started to develop my new series, Anthropogenic Crisis, I was becoming more aware of the aspects of what it might mean to be an Eco-Green artist; someone who is concerned about the environment and becoming more worried about global-heating. I think it is like politics, every vote counts. Thus, in the whole scope of things, the little things I can do to be Eco-green now could have more and more of a positive impact. And this is an ecological and environmental battle worth winning.
What I suspect is so cool is that many of the things we can environmentally implement can also have an economic benefit for ourselves as well as others. Recent case in point. While printing all of our holiday cards, I realized that I was going to also go through all of my proofing paper, which is the Hahnemuehle Photo Pearl, an RC paper. Which is made in Germany. While thinking about the replacement printing paper I also thought about the carbon footprint of this German paper and how that could be reduced? What about really good inkjet papers that are made in the United States that would avoid that overseas container shipment on a huge freighter? Okay, I know that if I purchase three less boxes of German (or French, or English) printing paper that this will not eliminate one ocean cargo freighter. Or even one round trip. But it’s something worth considering as a starting point.
The two U.S. inkjet paper suppliers that quickly came to mind are Moab Paper in Utah and Red River Paper in Texas. I had previously used the Moab Entrada matte, a 100% cotton, which printed consistently, but I wanted something with a luster finish. So I ordered a box of the Moab Lasal Exhibition Luster (an RC coated paper) and a box of the Red River Big Bend Baryta (100% alpha-cellulose, which means pulp, base stock with pure Baryta whitener layer), the Red River being a little bit more expensive.
These both arrived today so this afternoon I created a color profile for both, then made some test prints. While printing I also took note of the color out-of-gamut areas for a difficult to-print photograph comparing this against the color out-of-gamut for the Hahnemuehle Photo Pearl I was using. I had expected the Big Bend Baryta to be equal to it and while it was a little bit better (smaller amounts of area indicating out-of-gamut conditions), but surprisingly the Moab Lasal paper’s color gamut was even better than all of these. Hardly any area was being indicated as going out-of-gamut. wow.
It might appear that I found a winner in the Moab Lasal that is a ‘local’ American printing paper replacement for the H. Photo Pearl, especially when ordered in the larger 250 sheet box size that cost less than $0.90 (USD) per sheet. Nevertheless it still an RC ‘paper’, not fully eco-green friendly, while using it is at least a little bit better for the environment than the H. Photo Pearl.
By the way, did I mention that the Moab facility has converted to 100% wind power for their electricity? Cool! Not sure what else Moab is doing to go Eco-green but I think that in the short term I am going to vote for their environmental success in reducing their carbon footprint by purchasing their ink jet printing papers.
Being an Eco-green artist is not easy, but well worth the effort. Now I have to figure out what to do about replacing the H. Metallic Rag paper that I have grown to love. sigh.
Workshops, as well as a portfolio review opportunities by dates are:
Southeast Center for Photography (SEC4P): Creative PhotoBook workshop (Sold Out), a virtual event on Zoom; January 22 & 23 and 29 & 30, 2022, 10am – 1pm, EST (3 hour session each day, with a week between the weekend sessions to work your book-dummy).
Los Angeles Center of Photography (LACP): Exposure Weekend, virtual portfolio reviews, which I am one of the many portfolio reviewers available, January 27 – 30th, 2022, details here.
Medium Photo: Developing a Creative Photo Book, a virtual (Zoom) workshop I will be leading again in conjunction with Medium Photo on: March 5th & 6th and then March 12th & 13th, 2022, from 9am to noon, PST. More details and sign-up available now at Medium Photo.
Colorado Photographic Arts Center (CPAC): Developing a Creative Photo Book, a virtual (Zoom) workshop I will be leading on Saturday & Sunday, May 14th & 15th and then Saturday & Sunday 21st and 22nd, 2022, from 1pm to 4pm Mountain Time (MT). Registration is open with discounts for members.