There are many types of photo print papers available in the market. This makes it really tough for a photographer to choose the right photo paper for photo printing. Certain photos look good on certain types of photo paper. So, only if you understand the different types of photo papers and their features, you will be able to select the right photo paper for printing. In this article, I will explain the features of different photo papers, which you can use for printing photos.
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5 Types Of Photo Paper for Printing
1. Glossy Photo Paper
This is the most commonly used photo paper for printing. You can get a shiny look with a good amount of fine details. It is well suited for bright and colorful objects. This is good for high-resolution prints. Most of the people would be taking prints in the Glossy type paper.
Unwanted Reflection and Glare are the two major disadvantages of a Glossy type paper. When direct light falls on the glossy prints there would be reflections and glare which is a big source of distraction for the viewer. You can get the prints for a cheaper price since this is a universally available common photo paper for printing. So, you will definitely get a cost benefit.
There are two common issues with the Glossy paper. One is that there would be reflection and glare from its surface. So if there is too much light falling on this print then there would be lots of unwanted reflections.
Secondly, if you touch the paper surface with your finger then it would leave your fingerprint on its surface. This would become visible when direct light falls on it.
2. Matte Photo Paper
The next immediate option after a Glossy type of paper would be Matte photo prints. Matte solves the issue of glare and reflections from the photo prints to an extent. You will not get the silky smooth finish, unlike the Glossy prints.
This is good for making large prints. The low glare feature makes it suitable for printing Black and White images. So, most of the people who shoot in monochrome prefer Matte as their photo printing medium.
The disadvantage of using Matte photo paper is its lifespan. Excessive handling damages the surface and cannot be recovered.
There are many people out there who are addicted to Canvas Prints. Some believe that the photo will look better if it is printed on Canvas. Is it True? Let us see.
Canvas is a good photo printing medium if you are looking for big size prints. It even allows you to print a digitally zoomed photo when you are doing large size prints. With the given number of resolution (number of pixels), we can print it only up to a specific size. Canvas will help you to print much larger than that. Here, actually, we are compromising the resolution on the size
So, unlike other photo papers, there will be some reduction in sharpness when you choose canvas for photo printing. But, nowadays very high-quality canvas is available such that this small lack of sharpness is almost unnoticeable. So, they are not recommended for finely detailed images. They are not as sharp as a glossy print. So, go for Canvas print if you are planning to print big.
4. Lustre Photo Paper
Lustre photo paper is also known by Pearl photo printing paper. They are the ideal photo paper for printing wedding images. They are also good for portraits. Wedding photographers make use of this Lustre photo paper for creating wedding albums.
As the name suggests the paper feels good to hold. It doesn’t have the roughness like the Matte paper and is also less prone to damages while handling. The cost of printing would be more when compared to Matte or Glossy paper.
5. Metallic Photo Paper
If you have shining parts in your images then I recommend going for Metallic paper. This will give an additional sparkle to the shining parts of the image. It is mostly used for printing fashion photos, wedding photos, and sometimes for close up portraits.
After reading this article, I hope, you can make a decision on selecting the right type of paper for photo prints. Now you will be able to visualize how the image looks on different types of photo paper. It is always better to give test prints on small paper sizes to get a feel of the image on that type of paper.
If you really want to have a feel of all types of paper then you can give the same image on different photo paper for printing. After seeing the prints you will come to know the looks and feel of each type. There is no point in buying a high-end camera and lens if you are just using the images to upload on social media site. Start printing your photos. Choose the right photo paper for printing to get the right feel.
Consider reading this article to know the Correct Lightroom Export settings for print, to ensure that you get good quality prints