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Jürgen Strahm

When did you first understand the importance of color to the photographic process?
I started my career in the print-industry. Perfection in color was from the beginning on a major part of my students time. Especially in “old school” print production with film and scanners.
 
What is the most important aspect of color management that an aspiring photographer should know?
Don’t think quick and dirty. Keep your color workflow always in mind. From taking  photos till printing them. Because today you are the photographer and the postproduction guy in one person. If you are not interested in being a postproduction guy look for an digital assistant instead of providing bad results to your customers.

Give an example of the ways in which a solid knowledge of color management (or an accurate color environment) helped you – on a project? In a consultancy situation?
Customers don’t think about color because they have no idea what that means at all. Employees mostly too. They use material as-it-is and how they get material from the supplier. As a professional you should discuss and define which process you use, what you provide to the customer and what customer-benefits are associated with.

Why are you committed to using X-Rite products?
Easy to use. I will not spent more time as needed in setting up my color workflows.

How important are the latest color management tools in today’s industry?  Why?
Speed and quality. 

What does the (near) future hold for the photo industry, in your opinion? Do you think color management will be more or less important – why?
Color management will be always important if you work seriously.

How is color management related to your artistic process?
I do not distinguish between projects and free work. My process is always the same.

Do you see color management as an advantage for saving money?
Yes, for sure. If you work for print products and your customer is not satisfied about color you will have a serious problem explaining what happened because you are mostly the first guy in the production chain