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5 Things to consider when purchasing photographic prints

1.  Print ratio
    This is where things get a bit tricky with printing:

Let's say you want an 8 X 10 print. Well, part of the image is going to have to be cropped out, because 8 X 10 and 8 X 12 are different aspect ratios:

As you can see here, cropping from the original straight out of the camera dimensions results in losing some of the edges of the image. This is because we are cropping from a  4:6 ratio (8 X 12) to a 4 : 5 (8 X 10) ratio. Keep in mind that you can also go larger with the print dimensions while keeping the same aspect ratio.

The samples here will help you determine the right size for your purchase.

Most of my images are full frame but a few have been cropped for artisic presence. 

2. Size matters!

Always consider where the image will be displayed. Smaller images are better viewed from closer up and larger images are better viewed from a distance. 

If you have a large space above a couch or bed, a larger image will have more impact. 

3. Prints on Paper

Printing on paper is the traditional way of displaying a photograph, and it certainly has an aesthetic quality that is unique and well understood. Most of my printing has been onto paper of  various finishes and textures. I personally prefer a fine art paper that is 100% cotton rag archival heavyweight (308gsm) with a smooth surface delivering true colors and rich detail. When matted and framed,  this creates a very dramatic finish that I like very much.

     Advantages of Framed Prints:

  • Traditional look and appeal
  • Paper prints exhibit more detail than canvas
  • Black and white prints excel on fiber based papers

    Now for some important disadvantages:

  • glare and reflections from light
  • a smaller image size for a specific wall space (accounting for a 4-5″ border around the print for mat and frame)
  • larger sizes are heavy and expensive
  • perception of being separated from the print (becomes much more apparent when you experience the same photograph as a canvas)
  • frames need to match the decor of home or office

4. Prints on Canvas

Looking to combat some of these disadvantages, as well as offering new and great looking options for customers, I began experimenting with alternatives a few years ago. I hesitated printing to canvas because I did not want to compromise important elements to my work, namely detail, texture, and richness of shadows. However, very recently both inkjet printers and new formulations of canvas have allowed me to maintain these important critical details. I now print onto canvas without hesitation. This artist grade canvas is 395 GSM cotton-poly blend and has a satin finish that will last a lifetime. 

     Advantages of Canvas Prints:

  • do not exhibit any glare or reflections
  • largest image size for a given wall space (no mats or borders)
  • weigh much less that framed prints
  • much easier and economical to create extremely large sizes (up to 40″ x 100″)
  • canvas prints provide a frameless presentation which creates a window into the scene
  • creates a painterly effect which is very pleasing
  • can be installed in semi-humid environments (bathrooms)
  • lack of frame blends well into any style decor in home or office

     Some disadvantages:

  • texture of canvas can sometimes be distracting (I choose the images I print onto canvas carefully)
  • photograph can not be changed (permanent) you can always replace a print in a frame.

5. Budget

When purchasing prints be sure to consider the cost of framing in your final cost. I don't offer framing options for several reasons. Personal tatstes very widely and framing ads greatly to shipping costs. This is why I recommend have your print framed locally with a trusted framer. 

For larger prints I like to recommed canvas prints over paper prints because they can actually keep your final cost down. Canvas prints take on a life of their own without frames and have a natural fine art feel when hung on the wall. 

Shipping to the continental United States is always included in the price of the print. 

If you have any questions about a print purchase please don't hesitate to call or email me. I'm always happy to personally assist you with you purchase.

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