Epson photographic printers are always at the forefront of technology

Fotostudio Thron chooses SureColor for quality and style

Epson photographic printers are always at the forefront of technology

The Thron company has sold pharmacy goods, photos and accessories for around 50 years. Today, Cornelia and Werner Olgemöller in Kronach, Germany run a modern photo studio. For printing, they fully rely on Epson technology.

"For our shoots, we place importance on artistic quality and style," explains Werner Olgemöller, owner of the studio. Together with the two photographers Laura Iuliano and Julia Waßner, he photographs the events in the little town that people want to remember: family gatherings, from baptisms to first communions, right up to weddings; portraits and people; and even animals. For the last few years, the bulk of the work at the studio has been made up of baby bumps, children and married couples, but also the 'bread and butter' of the business: passport and application photos. A total of five Epson printers currently ensure perfect quality for every printed picture. The business recently invested in a SureColor P10000, which was delivered directly from Photokina 2016 to Kronach by distributor Tetenal. Fotostudio Thron has been working in digital since the mid-90s, first with laser imagesetters and later using small-format dye-sublimation thermal techniques. "Photography has always been my biggest passion," Werner admits.

Pioneers in digital output

"We've tested a lot of things over the years and continued to evolve in our use of advanced technology – from pure analogue photography, to digital methods, right up to inkjet printing. At one point, we were close to becoming a franchise shop belonging to a US photo giant," he admits. "We then got our first inkjet printer from this company just before the start of the new millennium". The majority of images were still produced using analogue methods until 2010, when Werner looked for a "plan B" for the now unreliable laser imagesetter and learnt about Epson inkjet technology. A Stylus Pro 7900 (24 inches/61 cm) and a 9700 (44 inches/112 cm) were purchased. These were soon joined by a SureColor P800, which mainly produced images from the VST photo print kiosk on paper sizes of up to A2. In general, application photos or small-format portrait photos were requested. "Business is going very well," adds Cornelia Olgemöller, whose focus in the studio is on job and application shoots. She's therefore particularly pleased about the SureColor P800's large-volume 80 ml inkjet cartridge, which won't need to be changed any time soon.

Meeting customer requirements

At the counter, an Epson SureLab D7 Studio ensures that photo jobs aren't stalled when there are many customers in the shop who want to print images from a memory card. The MicroLab and touchscreen terminal control three SureLab D700 printers with UltraChrome D6-S ink. The system is particularly efficient and low-maintenance. The studio also uses an Epson SureColor P10000, which meets even large-format image demands with its maximum print width of 112 cm (44 inches). As the most up-to-date model, it replaces both of the older Stylus Pro devices and brings customers' images to life in the highest quality possible. "Customers are opting more and more for fine art printing, particularly for family photos, and preferably on canvas or handmade paper," Laura Iuliano explains. Thanks to the Epson UltraChrome Pro ink sets with ten colours, the carefully composed images are enshrined in brilliant colour, or in elegant black and white with deep blacks, as required by the picture (and customer). With a maximum resolution of 2,400 x 1,200 dpi, the print results are on par with traditional photochemical processes, but the choice of materials here is considerably broader. And Werner believes his future lies with professional imagery: "Mugs or similar photo gifts are currently out of the question, " he says, but he'd like to expand into this area.

An efficient workflow for a good work-life balance

Thanks to their Epson devices, Cornelia and Werner Olgemöller are well-equipped for the future. "The devices can be operated easily, and everything fits together logically." Fotostudio Thron's machines are controlled directly from Adobe Creative programs via DinaX Mirage RIP. Julia Waßner is particularly a fan – she retouches customer photos using a large-format tablet and pen as part of a modern workflow. "As a small business, we value uncomplicated and efficient working methods," Werner Olgemöller stresses. He therefore had the company's network updated first and had an up-to-date high-performance server generation installed. The manager of the company is convinced that: "Work must be fun and there must be space to breathe, otherwise creativity suffers. We've found partners in Tetenal and Epson who've left us with more time for the essentials – the devices work simply and reliably. And that's how it should be."