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Printing / Displaying Options

Discussion in 'Printing' started by TwoWheels, Jun 21, 2015.

  1. TwoWheels

    TwoWheels Mu-43 Top Veteran

    679
    May 28, 2014
    British Columbia
    Evan
    I haven't really printed any images in years and have decided it's finally time. I'm not really interested in doing the printing myself, so I'm looking at available options. Between a couple local printers and online labs (I'm in Canada), there are many more printing options than there used to be. Instead of just glossy and matte, I can order on canvas, metal, acrylic. I can have it mounted on mdf. I can have a "frameless" mount. :confused-53:

    The photos I want to print and display range from family photos to landscapes to macros. They will be displayed at home and in my office oat work. I'm guessing that some type of printing/displaying options work better with some types of photos than others. I'm also a little tired of the standard matting/framing look and ready to try something a little different. But experimenting can get expensive. I don't mind spending money to have photos printed, but I don't want to sink a lot of money into the displaying part of it. I envision having something displayed for a year or two then retiring it and moving on to another print. Spending $hundreds for custom framing seems a waste to me.

    How do you display your prints? What are your recommendations and what works best for you? Any budget alternatives that display the print well but skip the fancy framing and matting that costs a lot?
     
  2. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    A lot depends on personal taste and what you want to do with the image after taking it down. An affordable, but lightly finished option, is to have the image mounted/spray coated and then board edge taped. It is a minimalist look, but at least it looks finished, and it is quite affordable. There are many other options, but this is one that I use when I do not want a large investment in an image, but want it to at least look "finished". I have had reasonable success with White House Custom Color and Bay Photo for this type of work.

    Good luck,

    --Ken
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    I had a couple of images printed on metal (16" x 20") last year and I was really happy with the way they turned out. I got them through a Groupon-like deal so the cost was not huge -- if I recall they I paid something like $100 for both. The metal prints are unframed, but they have a "finished" appearance. The ones I got have a couple of wood blocks mounted on the back of the aluminum plate, so they stand off from the wall 3/4" so that they have a nice shadow line. There are a variety of edge/mounting treatments to choose from. I've also had some photos printed on canvas, and in comparison I really like how the sharpness of the image rings true on the metal, although which I'd choose really depends for me on the image.

    The company that I used appears to be out of business now (maybe those Groupon deals were too good), but I've heard and read good things about mpix as well as Bay Photo, although I don't have personal experience with either.
     
  4. TwoWheels

    TwoWheels Mu-43 Top Veteran

    679
    May 28, 2014
    British Columbia
    Evan
    What do you have it mounted on? There seem to be several options. And what is the edge taping? I'm not familiar with that.
     
  5. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    The mounting choices are usually styrene, gatorfoam and masonite board among others. I thought some labs used to offer black tape edging on gator foam to give the board a more finished look, but it looks like "Standouts" may have replaced that option. Both Bay Photo and White House Custom Color have good explanations (and pricing) for these printing options. It is a lot of reading as there are lots of choices, but I like having all of the finishing choices at various price points. It's a bit like a photographic candy store when you want to print.

    Good luck,

    --Ken
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. TwoWheels

    TwoWheels Mu-43 Top Veteran

    679
    May 28, 2014
    British Columbia
    Evan
    As usual, living in Canada, our choices are more limited and (generally) more expensive. The main option here seems to be a company called Posterjack.ca. They seem to have many of the same printing/product options as the places you mentioned. I guess I'll have to just order a few things to see what I like and go from there.
     
  7. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Keith
    Of course you can funnel all that money you don't have to spend on health insurance into buying photo gear and prints. :D

    I think you're right that you should just try a couple of options that you like and see how it turns out.
     
    • Funny Funny x 1
  8. popiT

    popiT Mu-43 Top Veteran

    602
    Mar 20, 2014
    BayArea, CA
    Yang
    Last year, I had a 18"x24" metal print from BayPhoto. I'm very satisfied with it/them. The color/tone/brightness is pretty exact the same as my submitted image. And good quality too. I just had a simple float mount. They are not inexpensive, but I waited for their (I think 2x/year) for 25%off promotion. A couple months ago, I had another 18x24 metal printed from them again :) Highly recommended.
     
  9. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    For most of our large prints we do in our home, I have the printer mount them on light board and have a texture applied. I then mount it in a glassless frame. I tried doing some of the standoff prints or having it mounted on inch thick foam, but it always looks unfinished to me without a frame.

    Metal prints are pretty expensive, but if you like the look you can use metallic paper and have it mounted as mentioned above, but you would want to do that without a texture applied.

    Smaller prints, I just use standard off the shelf frames with glass.