One of the things I love most about cellphone technology, is the ability to snap a photo anywhere and everywhere (yes, bathroom selfies, I’m talking to you) without lugging a camera around. Of course, the flip side to this is having seven million photos filed away in your archives that rarely get looked at. Instagram has definitely brought us a long way in turning our favourites into amateur-masterpieces that we can share and store in one place.
But here’s the thing: I like things. Things that I can touch and hold and put up above my desk and on my fridge and in my bedroom… And printing photos is a little bit of a hack. Or super pricey. Or both.
At least, that’s what I’ve always thought. But it turns out that Epson has made huge strides in drastically bringing down the costs of home photo printing, while keeping the quality as good as anything you’ll get from a store. How? By moving away from traditional uber-expensive ink cartridges, to high capacity ink tanks that are easily refillable without the mess of traditional cartridges.
To demonstrate the ease and quality of their range of photo printers, Epson invited us to try out their iPrint app at the gorgeous Emoyeni Estate in Parktown. Since some of us (um, me) were completely amateur photographers, they invited Gareth Pon (Instagram prodigy) and Meruschka Govender (ridiculously cool travel blogger) to give us some tips on catching the perfect shot, all with our cellphones. And also, to make me feel ridiculously star struck. They both gave us some really useful advice, hints and tips, and shared a few of their favourite photo-editing apps – check out Tanya’s post for all the sneaky details.
Armed with their expert advice, we were let loose on the sunset with the challenge of telling our Joburg story in just four frames. Emoyeni is so magnificent that taking beautiful shots turned out to be a breeze. Once we had chosen our favourite four – a much more difficult task – we used the Epson iPrint app to wirelessly connect to the L355 printers, and watched our digital photos become prints before our eyes.
The photos were spectacular, which was impressive since the Epson L355 isn’t even their top-of-the-range photographic printer. This little baby is designed for home and small business usage, and will print up to 12,000 black and 6,500 colour pages – the equivalent of 63 traditional ink cartridges. Assuming you use it for both black and colour printing, that works out to 8 cents per page. Yes, you read that right. EIGHT CENTS.
Other than the insanely low cost of printing, I loved that there’s absolutely no need for an intermediary computer. Simply snap, edit on your phone (using some of Gareth and Meruschka’s recommended apps), and print through the Epson iPrint app. No cables, no computers, no USBs.
As soon as I got home, I stuck my photos on the fridge. And there, in immediate, tangible, touchy-feely realness, were photographic memories of the last few hours. Seriously, how cool is that?