I was reading a book and came across an interesting sentence that stated that the artist is the eye and the printmaker is the hand. I had a traditional wet darkroom set up at our old house. I used it to print personal shots that I would give as gifts to family and friends. Printing my own shots at my home darkroom was not viable when I became a professional photographer. My home darkroom was set up for black and white film developing and printing. I had to send out my color work for developing and printing to a professional lab.
It was both practical and profitable to use an outside lab once I turned professional. Using a professional lab allowed me more time to shoot for clients. More paid shooting gigs always equates to more income. Using a professional lab freed up my time. What I paid the lab was added to project cost and was always a factor in determining what I had to charge my clients.
Professional photography is hardly a lone wolf endeavor that requires a photographer to do everything from shooting to post processing and printing. There has always been a collaboration present between a professional photographer and various service providers and suppliers.
It’s been more than twenty years since I stopped using my film darkroom. I now rely on a digital darkroom and I find myself being the hand to the eye of our print clients.
Life has an interesting way of creating paths you weren’t aware you were on until you reach your destination.