These guidelines assume that the pictures will ultimately be printed by a four colour litho printer on ordinary coated paper, the kind of reproduction method used by book and magazine publishers, since this makes up the vast majority of our sales.
Your originals may be digital, transparency or negative, but all submissions to us must be supplied digitally in accordance with the guidelines below.
How digital contributions are handled
The first thing that happens when a contributor’s disc arrives is it’s contents are transferred to a local hard disk using a Photoshop script which checks the file are over our minimum size, looks for bad formatting in the keywords, sorts out some formatting issues in the caption, replaces any characters that may be problematic when the pictures are uploaded and adds our own contact details.
Then the pictures are edited in Adobe Bridge and, if necessary, corrected. This usually just means scanning through them to check they are not too light or dark or over saturated, but in some cases we might correct converging parallels, remove blemishes such as discarded rubbish and, rarely, fix pictures that have been ineptly retouched by the contributor.
Next we go through and check the captions and keywords for spelling errors and possibly supplement the keywords if important entries have been omitted. We add our own reference number and the photographer credits if they were left off.
Next we use another Photoshop script that re-sizes the picture to the size that will be uploaded, renames the file with our own reference number, copies the caption and keywords to a data file and saves the picture as a jpeg.
Finally the pictures are uploaded to the web site and the data file is checked over before it too is uploaded.
While a lot of this is automated, much still has to be done by hand on a file by file basis which takes a long time. We would appreciate it if all contributing photographers read and stick to these guidelines as closely as possible.
I would be interested to hear from contributing photographers with tips and suggestions that might make submissions simpler for other contributors. Simon@collectionspicturelibrary.com