I have been a little less than happy with the depth to my new black and white prints from the Independent Machinery project so this morning I decided to try some Canon Semi gloss paper. I'd had trouble with other glossy dried matte wanabees because the canon 5000 printer uses a particularly glossy ink and so the white areas of all the papers I have tried showed significantly less gloss than the dark areas.
I had been noticing the incredible printing quality in Lenswork, thinking that these magazine reproductions were looking better than my matte prints - nice for Lenswork, frustrating for me. Oddly, Lenswork has gloss differential too -their ink is glossier than the paper - and I hadn't been complaining about that - so maybe I'm a bit too paranoid about the whole gloss differential business.
Anyway today I tried the semi-gloss Plus paper from Canon thinking that Canon's paper might better match Canon's ink. Sort of - there's still substantially more gloss in the dark areas so not a brilliant solution there. On the other hand, the depth of the blacks is wonderful, the prints don't make me look enviously at Lenswork. The gloss differential doesn't bother me on thse prints since they don't have large areas of very white - others might - time will tell.
I'm not thrilled with a plastic paper but that may be more bias than fact as the prints look darn nice. I think I'll check out that new Harman gloss Baryta paper.
I think I will continue to use the Canon Semi Gloss Plus for my own prints. One observation I have made is that with matte prints, there is a limit to the resolution of images which means that in general I don't like prints smaller than 13X19 with a generous border. With the canon paper, there seems to be higher resolution (perhaps less dot spread) and thus 8.5X11 prints look wonderful, and fit nicely in hand - I think that could become my standard size in the future - intereseting.