Musings on Photography

Work Wall

Posted in equipment, hardware, process by Paul Butzi on November 5, 2009


Somehow I’ve gotten out of the habit of using my ‘work wall’ – a wall in my work room that has enough clear space to hang quite a lot of ‘work’ prints, so that I can see them all at once. Part of the deal is that I’ve discovered a couple of useful ways to leverage my large (30″) monitor.

One way is that I have the screen saver set to cycle through my current set of ‘images of interest’. So when I’m fiddling with things in the work room, those images are cycling on the monitor.

Another way is that I finally broke down, tore down my last remaining Windows machine, and hooked up the 19″ monitor that was connected to it to my Mac Pro, next to the 30″ Apple monitor. Having the dual headed arrangment means I can have an image very large on the 30″ monitor and be selecting images, or whatever, on the other monitor. It’s a way to spend more time with an image displayed fairly large, either while editing the image or while browsing a set of images.

In the meantime, the price on HDTV capable monitors continues to drop. 24″ monitors are below $250. Even the prices on truly large monitors/TV’s have fallen dramatically.

It occurs to me that before too long, I’ll be able to just hang several monitors on the work wall, connect them to a mac mini, and have an electronic work wall which will fill a lot of the uses for the old blue tack and prints work wall.

4 Responses

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  1. Ed Richards said, on November 5, 2009 at 6:53 pm


    You were once a pretty strong proponent of looking at prints – are you changing your view on that? Are prints still your objective? I can certainly see why prints would not be as relevant if your concern is the process of taking pictures, rather than the ultimate presentation of them.

  2. Tommy Williams said, on November 5, 2009 at 6:54 pm

    I don’t know about replacing printed output–even work prints–with monitors. There’s something about having it printed out that causes me to see the picture differently and to notice things that I don’t see on the screen, even after lots of review.

    Maybe it’s just that printed photos–at least at sizes larger than 4×6–are still a bit of a novelty for me. I only dabbled with creative photography with a film camera for one summer in 1990. It wasn’t until I got my first digital camera in 1997 that I started seeing photography as something more than a way to make snapshots.

  3. Peter Szawlowski said, on November 6, 2009 at 6:16 am

    Yes, monitors are getting cheaper, but I feel they are no substitute for prints on paper, I still do proofs on letter size paper, (larger would be too expensive for me) – There is something about seeing an image printed on good paper, I am probably old-fashioned, I need to touch photographs, feel the paper, see the light reflecting off the page …

  4. Infamous J said, on November 6, 2009 at 11:49 am

    What is your final output? Web or prints? This would dictate your work wall.

    Monitors are all well and good but the print is where the monitor hits the road. 😉

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