Surprised that no-one has bothered to answer your questions, so here goes.
1. For the prints you offer, do the sizes you list represent the actual image size or the paper size? For example, if I offer a 6x9 image printed on 8.5x11 paper, would you expect that to be described as a 6x9 print?
State that itís a 6" x 9" image printed on 8.5" x 11" paper. Talk about how great
the paper is. Check Henry Wilhelmís website if necessary.
2. Do you only offer matted prints or do you also sell the print un-matted? I like the idea of selling everything matted, but that means more work for me and I would have to sell them at a higher price to make up for it. I want my prints to be affordable (but not cheap) and I donít want to complicate things with too many options.
If youíre posting, a print in a tube will be much cheaper to send than a flat-packed print and mat, but you get to choose the mat colour and also the ability to sign or print your authorship info on the mat. Itís not too hard to offer both matted and unmatted pricing. But if you offer only unmatted, you have little control over how your prints are displayed (eg a client could mat over your signature made on the border of the print).
3. Do any of you print small sizes at home and have larger prints made at a lab? If so, are the larger prints made with the same ink and paper as your smaller prints? Iíll be using Ilford Gold Fibre Silk at home but my local lab only offers Epson Premium Lustre. Iím not sure how important it is to maintain consistency across the different sizes.
Consistency rules, in surface, paper tint and colour reproduction. Any reason to prefer Ilford over Epson stock?
4. Iím also not sure how big I can print and still be satisfied with the quality. It would be expensive to make large test prints of each image to find that limit, but that seems like the right thing to do. How do you decide the biggest sizes to offer?
Only you can decide if it is good qualityóyou could ask other photographers or other visual artists, but I find civilians insufficiently critical in judging image quality. Re test prints, you can do test strips, as in the darkroom of old; though I am not sure if you are referring to your
prints or lab
prints. And is your computer screen hardware-calibrated? Can you get consistent day-to-day and week-to-week colour from your lab?
Please feel free to expand beyond these questions if you have any other advice for someone in my position. I realize this is all very optimistic and I probably wonít sell much, if anything, but Iím trying to plan things as if Iím going to be successful. Donít worry, Iím not going to quit my day job.