I got just got copies of an annual report that I worked on last year. We started in the Summer when it was hot and steamy and we finished on a freezing, overcast day in December. The design of the annual report was very, very good but the thing I liked most about it (in addition to the photography) was the printing. Whoever spec'ed the printing didn't mess around with skinny, toilet tissue newsprint. They went with rich, glossy premium white stock. The high priced spread. And they used a six color offset printer with nice machines. No cheesy powder dye printing. And the result is makes this report look like the best handprinted Lightjet/Cibachrome prints you ever saw. And you know what? When everyone else settles for what they think is "good enough" and then something like this comes along and sits next to it, the makers of the lesser work should just hang their heads and walk away.
And maybe that's where we're coming to with photography. Maybe so many people have settled for "just-good-enough" stock photography and "just-okay-but-really-cheap" production values and "she's- not-really-the-person-we-wanted-in-the-ad-but-she-works-in-HR-and-she-was-free" not quite there models, that they've diminished peoples' memories of what really great stuff looked like. And when something really well done comes along it sticks out from the crowd like gold coins in a pile of...... leftover pizza. And everyone recognizes the difference in quality. And then clients will want something that's as good as "that piece that Bob did." You know, the one that won all the awards and grabbed everyone's attention.
Could it be that after a decade of "good enough" the pendulum could actually swing back in the other direction toward........WOW!!!!! THAT'S FANTASTIC. ?????
Well. One of my clients just did it and I was blown away. I wonder if we can make that reality the next big social trend. We could call it.........I WANT STUFF TO BE THE VERY BEST IT CAN BE. Because we only get to do this one time around. And wouldn't it be great if the work of our lives was something we could be proud of?
While printing presses have been modernized, at the top it's still the same process of spreading ink across a sheet of paper. At high rates of speed. Yeah. Let's do this thing right.