Creating top-quality prints for your portfolio is a multi-step process, beginning with good photographic proficiency and ending with a mastery of printing techniques. In the middle, there's the software. Canon's free Digital Photo Professional (DPP)
software is designed to help you make the most of your Canon RAW files, and Canon's Professional Print & Layout
app, which is also completely free to download and use, will enable you to get the best results from your Canon printer. You can use it as a standalone app or as a plug-in for DPP, Adobe® Photoshop,® Photoshop Elements and Adobe Lightroom®. It's optimised for the imagePROGRAF PRO-300
and the current range of Canon's larger professional photo printers.
Suhaib emphasises the benefits of using the soft-proofing and hard-proofing tools
in Professional Print & Layout. "The soft-proofing tool uses the ICC profiles
of individual Hahnemühle and other papers to give you an on-screen preview of how your image will look when it's printed," he says, dramatically reducing the uncertainty in photo printing. "It works really well, so long as you have a good-quality screen that's accurately calibrated
"For hard-proofing, you can create a Pattern print, which outputs multiple thumbnail versions of the same image on the paper, with subtle differences in brightness, contrast and colour rendition, so you can pick your favourite option before creating the full-sized print. This is really effective, even if you don't have an expensive, calibrated screen, and removes all the trial and error, saving a lot of time, money and materials that could otherwise be wasted.