Reproducing Headshots – ABC Pictures

This post sounds a little commercial-y, but I’m not getting paid for it.  Darn.

Yesterday I received a new batch of headshots.  For an actor, headshots are money potential so it’s always a good idea to have a bunch on hand.  8×10 photo reproduction can get pricey, though.  Hundreds of dollars pricey.

I’m about to do a mailing so I just ordered a bunch from a place that I have used since, yikes, 1995.  ABC Pictures based in Springfield, MO.

You can get 250 black & white pictures for around $85, which I think is really good (it’s more if you want color, custom layout or overnight delivery).

The reason they are cheaper is the reproduction process they use.  Instead of photographic reproduction, they are lithographs.  The image is made of little dots like a newspaper picture.

The resolution is so fine, though, that it’s almost impossible to tell the difference.

Here are the pros and cons as I see them:

PROS

  • Low cost for high-volume reproduction.
  • You can submit your original headshot either by mail or electronically.  They e-mail you a PDF proof sheet for your approval before they print.
  • They can easily convert a color shot to black & white if you need them to.
  • REALLY GREAT CUSTOMER SERVICE.  Yes, I yelled this.  Whether you submit by mail or electronically, if there are any issues a person contacts you immediately.  Once I had a small problem with a batch (the bottom of the “y” in my name was cut off ).  I contacted them and they redid the batch – no extra charge and no hassle.
  • Paper is semi-glossy on the photo side and untreated on the back.  You can print your resume directly on the photo, even with an ink-jet printer.
  • They also do postcards and business cards.

CONS

  • Website gets everything done okay, but it’s a little clunky.  It looks and behaves a little…eh…2002.
  • You do need to allow a couple of weeks for turnaround time.  If you are looking for headshots in one week, they’ll do their best but they can’t guarantee it, even with rush delivery.
  • Lithographs do not work well with newspapers, since they also use lithography for their pictures.  What may result is a Moire pattern and it may look kind of nasty.  If you plan to give your headshots to the papers for publicity purposes, use a photograph.

There you are.  Bravo to you ABC for being something that works.

Headshot with resume printed on back

Headshot with resume printed on back

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