How do you get started if you are thinking about printing something (even, 'gasp,' one of your phone pics) for your home?
1. Decide on the photo. This could be from your FB page, a photo you saw on Flickr and even one of your own iPhone or Android ones! If the photo is not yours, the first thing is to contact the photographer and see if you can purchase it.
2. Do you want paper, a canvas, a metal print, an acrylic one? The list of types of prints goes on and can become overwhelming however I suggest either a paper print or a canvas to start.
3. Decide on the size and how do you do that?
Pick a size, say 12 x 18, then cut out paper - use a newspaper (what is that??) or tape together a couple of papers from your printer to make the 12 x 18 size. Pick the wall where you want to hang the print and tape up the paper that is the same size as the print you want to order. Leave it for a few days and see if the size is right for the room (and you!) Adjust accordingly! Maybe you will buy larger or get two or three of the same size!
4. If you chose canvas, you may have seen the terms - 'stretched' or 'framed'. Either works.
I often tell people that if you aren't sure, get a stretched canvas, you can always add a frame. A canvas is "stretched" onto a kiln dried solid wood frame so you can hang it on your wall 'as is'.
Canvas sizes larger than 30" are (usually) fitted with a back strainer bar to further support the frame of your artwork. Do all printers do that? I don't know but mine does.
5. Here is a photo of the stretched canvases. They are fairly light in weight. Thick or thin are options and usually no extra charge.
6. Here is a stretched canvas with a frame. This really does make the canvas 'pop' however it also looks good without. Framing is more costly but some people prefer the look - again, try it without and see what you think!
7. I also suggest checking out your local Winners, Homesense or Target (Walmart?) store for frames. Even if the frame already has a photo, it is often less expensive to remove the print and then get a customized paper print on your own. My printer can usually print any size and if yours doesn't, ask around to find one that does. I prefer my photos to have a 2 x 3 ratio so that I can capture what was shot without cropping. An 8 x 10, every one's favourite size means the photo has to be cropped and while it doesn't look noticeable to most, it does when compared to the original (don't compare - lol!)
8. Why even get a print? Well, it is pretty personal thing to do for your living space and with all these iPhone and android pics floating around, how are you ever going to see them if you never print them? A really cool gallery can be made with 8 x8 squares - choose an even number to arrange on your wall or use an odd number (three or five) to create a grouping above a small table or dresser.
9. Um, do I suggest choosing a print for someone else's home? That would be a no. Each of us has our personal style (operative word being 'personal') so buying something for someone else's personal space? Not a great idea. A gift certificate though might work so they can choose what they want.
10. Where do you get things printed? Don't discount your local Costco - I know some photographers are 'horrified' at that but Costco usually has excellent professional quality printing. Are the papers fine art papers? No, but they usually get good results and will reprint if you aren't happy. Professional printers have an edge with a variety of papers. There are a variety of printers online - Posterjack, Pikto, and I'll add more when I remember them! My personal printer is Printpartner.ca based in Toronto - they run specials if you sign up for their emails. Quality is top notch and they ship! My favourite part is that there is always a paper border around the print so you can put it in a frame and have room to spare and it lays flat better.
Are you ready to start personalizing memories for your home?
Some of the photographs on this website are available for purchase. Please contact me.