Artists are control freaks.
Updated: Sep 18
I believe, as an artist, you need to have complete control over the entire creative process from start to finish.
Some collaboration is ok and sometimes even necessary. For example, an author probably should have an editor and some artists get together with custom woodworkers to make a frame to complete a piece. Some painters will hire a photographer that they know and trust to make prints of their paintings. And I see that as collaborative IF the photographer prints the pieces them self and prints them to the painters exact specifications i.e. paper type (matte, semi-matte, or gloss), paper surface (toothy or smooth) and is held to the highest standard by the painter.
Printing my own work started many years ago when I photographed weddings. I would send the digital files out to a lab for proofs and they would come back either cropped incorrectly or the colors would be tinted. I tried several labs and was disappointed with each.
I draw the line at commercial labs. That is too much control relinquished.
Because of that and to protect my reputation as a fine art photographer, I do not use a printing service. I print and mat my open edition prints and I print, stretch, and frame my limited edition canvas pieces myself.