The natural beauty of Santa Barbara, California, provides an extraordinary backdrop for wedding ceremonies—it’s ranked among the most popular destinations in the country—and no one knows how to capture those priceless memories quite like wedding photographer Jose Villa.
One way Villa has set himself apart from other photographers over his 16-year career is by working exclusively in film; another, more recent way is by providing his clients and customers with a seamless online print ordering process, a business decision that wouldn’t have been possible without the relationship he’s developed with Richard Photo Lab. “Color is obviously very, very important [in a print]” says Villa, “and it’s not easy to dial in good natural color. Richard Photo Lab really understands the work flow and formula that I use to expose my film.”
As a result, Villa’s able to offer clients and customers a simple, direct way to order prints online, confident that the outcome will live up to high standards. “Even though I overexpose my film by one stop or even a stop and a half, Richard Photo Lab is able to control the film and achieve a skin tone that’s natural—and skin tone has to look natural,” he adds. “It’s number one.”
Villa created an online print shop when demand for his photographs soared after joining Instagram. Although most of his photographs contain people, Villa also looks to capture a sense of place while shooting weddings or portraits, focusing on a detail in the landscape like a blade of grass or a horse grazing in the distance. Demand for those types of images has increased in recent months, not just from clients, but from designers and other photographers as well. Creating an online print shop allowed Villa to capitalize on this demand and diversify his revenue. When orders are made, Villa receives an email, checks over the order, and then passes the order on to Richard Photo Lab, which takes it from there.
Villa’s favorite paper is Hahnemühle Photo Rag, one of Richard Photo Lab’s best sellers due to its color consistency and its pulpy, artisan style, which works particularly well with fine art images like Villa’s. Recently, Richard Photo Lab began offering five new papers from Canson, Innova and Moab, in addition to Canson BFK Rives and Hahnemühle Photo Rag, so that clients have more fine art print surface options, as well as the ability to make prints as large as 60 x 120 inches. Learn more about Richard Photo Lab’s new papers here.
Villa has stayed with Richard Photo Lab over the years not just because they can achieve the specific look that make Villa’s prints stand out, but because of their stellar equipment and reliable customer service. “The same employees who work on my scans also work on my prints,” he says, so every order is consistent. Richard Photo Lab also only uses pigment-based ink and papers that are almost exclusively 100 percent cotton to ensure Villa’s fine art prints last as long as possible. “They also know and understand beautiful traditional black-and-white images, which is what I like,” says Villa.
Pairing his online print shop with Richard Photo Lab not only allowed Villa to diversify his income, it also gave him the freedom to do more of what he wants to do: capture “the living, breathing, fast-moving phenomenon that is a wedding.”
Fine-art prints are 20% off all August long—see more details here: http://www.richardphotolab.com/blog/summer-print-sale-2017
Want to learn more about fine-art printing? Richard Photo Lab has you covered. Step inside their lab, here.