Instead of using a colour printer to print images on plain, untreated paper, photographic printing uses special paper covered in light-sensitive chemicals. When the paper is exposed to an image by letting the light react with the chemicals and the image itself, a print is produced.
The most commonly used kind of colour print today is the Chromogenic Colour Print, or C-Type Print, which was first made available by Kodak in 1942. C-Type paper uses three coloured dyes yellow, magenta and cyan blue that layered on top of each other form the complete image. After exposure, a print is made by the reaction between the colour developing chemical and the dye coupling chemical on the paper. Once that has occurred the remaining light-sensitive silver material needs to be removed in a series of processing steps. You could think of this part as like drawing a picture with glue then pouring glitter over it and shaking off the excess.
Metroprint uses two kinds of photographic paper for C-Type prints. The first, Kodak Professional Ultra Endura, is a resin-coated paper that can be used with both film and digital images. It can last for up to 100 years if displayed at home and 200 years in dark storage. This paper is available in large format for prints as big as 120 by 70. The second colour print paper used by Metroprint, Fuji Crystal Archive, is widely considered to be the industry standard and boasts similar longevity with added depth to the colour.
As well as great paper to choose from when ordering colour prints, Metroprint boasts what is perhaps one of the best printers ever made. The Oc› Lightjet 500XL, one of ten in the world, is used for any C-Type print larger than 48.
For Gicl›e prints customers have a huge choice papers including several Cotton Rag, Baryta and Economy coated options.
If that was not enough, Metroprint provide an equally impressive service for customers wishing to print in black and white. The process for making black and white prints is quite different from working with colour and as such requires a different kind of paper. Metroprint uses genuine ILFORD Black and White silver gelatin photographic paper which brings digital files as close to a darkroom print as possible. Unlike most black and white printing services, Metroprint uses paper made specifically for digital printing. The Ilford RC Digital Pearl comes from a paper-making pedigree 130 years strong. This resin-coated paper has been specially developed to give the same fidelity to black and white digital images that is given to negatives in a darkroom. If you are looking for an even more authentic touch then the Ilford Galerie FB Digital option might be for you.
So if you are looking for a print in either colour or black and white, C-Type or Gicl›e, Metroprint are there to give you the biggest choice and the highest quality.