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Photographer Bruno Barbey produces custom, high-quality photo books with HP Indigo


“With the HP Indigo digital press, I know I can do 100 copies, and then 200 or 300, and very quickly launch a
new edition that’s different.”

— Bruno Barbey

Renowned Paris-based photographer Bruno Barbey knows how to get the right shot. And he always acts quickly when inspiration strikes.

Quick facts

  • Artists like photographer Bruno Barbey rely on the speed of the HP Indigo digital press to create fine art projects fast.
  • The HP Indigo digital press gives photographers and designers the finishing and media options to create custom fine art pieces.
  • Barbey is able to surpass the quality of offset printing using HP Indigo digital printing technology.

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When the award-winning photographer recently returned from shooting in Shanghai, China, he was scheduled to show his photos at the Galerie Lipao-Huang in Paris. But Barbey saw a chance to promote his work beyond the gallery—he decided to create a custom professional-quality photo book of the images in his exhibition, Shanghai Universelle.

To produce the limited-edition photo book and have it ready for the exhibition opening, Barbey turned to HP Indigo technology.

Speed for every creative opportunity

Barbey has been a member of Magnum Photos for 45 years. He’s a pioneer of color photojournalism and a veteran of tight deadlines. But producing a high-quality photo book posed a different challenge—especially with the exhibition less than three weeks away.

Using the HP Indigo press 5000, e-Center, a respected Paris print service provider, was ready to help Barbey produce the book in record time. The HP Indigo digital press offers responsive throughput speeds to meet tough deadlines: up to 4,000 4-color 8.5 x 11-inch images per hour (two-up). Barbey explains:

Bruno Barbey

“The speed of the
HP Indigo digital press
gives me more freedom
to act on my creative

Versatility to serve the artist

Having the speed to meet deadlines can help fulfill an artist’s vision, but it takes more than speed to create a distinctive work of art. With the HP Indigo digital press, Barbey was able to produce a truly special 140-page photo book that stands on its own—each of the first 100 books came in a clamshell box with a signed print.

The HP Indigo digital press makes customizing fine art projects easier with three paper-feeding trays that simultaneously accommodate a wide range of media types and weights, from 50 lb text to 130 lb cover. The digital press’s compatibility with high-quality finishing solutions also helps artists add stunning custom covers to their photo books.

Visitors to Shanghai Universelle have certainly responded to the exceptional book. It has been so popular that Barbey is looking to reprint more.

“With the HP Indigo digital press, I know I can do 100 copies, and then 200 or 300, and very quickly launch a new edition that’s different. It’s excellent to have,” says Barbey.

Barbey’s book was also the first to use ARTtrust technology, a new self-certification system developed by Prooftag™ in collaboration with HP.

Fine art photo quality

The HP Indigo digital press is able to rival the quality and color range of offset printing with its liquid HP ElectroInk and up to seven colors. This assured that the vibrant color and intricate detail Barbey is known for was perfectly represented when his latest book came off the press.

In Barbey’s prints, a Shanghai skyline combines precise geometry and vivid tones. Metal meshwork crisscrosses an ashen sky like a delicate lace. Neon light glows in myriad reds.

Barbey felt the HP Indigo digital press captured it all. “The prints in the book are superb using the HP Indigo,” he says.

“The quality of the color matching is unique—
I’m seeing the exact colors I saw and shot. ”