The Ultimate Guide to Framing Photos and Wall Art
How to Frame Prints and Wall Art - The Ultimate Guide to Framing Photos at Home.
I often get asked about how to best frame the prints I sell. While some customers might want a professional to take care of this for them - it can be more affordable and bring that sense of achievement in doing it yourself.
There are many different sizes that photographs can be printed in and most places that you buy frames will offer a range to fit different sized pictures. in fact in my studio at present, I currently have around 100 frames covering around 12 sizes of prints.
This means that picking up frames for your photographs is probably not going to be an issue because you should be able to find your correct size in the many ranges available, whether you're after extra large framed photographs or just small pieces for the mantel piece.
A bit about aspect ratios - if printing your own images!
Most pictures come in a set aspect ratio and you will need to work out how well it will frame or how to crop your image to change it, this will allow your given print to fit its mount or frame.
For instance a 10"x12" print is at a 6:5 ratio whilst a 8"x12" is at 3:2 at Sebastien Coell Photography I tend to sell close to the 3:2 ratio as this is what my camera natively captures. Allowing me to show the full captured scene without cropping.
In other words unless you want a specific sized frame try and pick a frame or frame and mount combination that works well with the image you have.
Selecting your Frame Size!
Once you know the size of your print, look for frames either at that size or larger with a mount inside that will fit your print. Mounts give a more classical vibe and instantly make the overall finished article feel more substantial and alluring.
The addition of a mount also helps to fill wall space since the frame ends up bigger on the wall, it can often make your print pop and stand out.
What about not using a mount, its good to go mount less if your looking for a more contemporary feel, poster prints often look good without mounts, contrastey black and white's also can look good with the appropriate frame without a mount.
Just be sure that if your going mount-less you don't print in full gloss as that will cause issue where the print touches the glass.
An example of a specific size
If for instance you were to purchase one of our 8"x12" prints, you would want to look at frames that are either 8"x12" (20x30cm) or buy a frame with a mount included that will fit your 8"x12" images.
For instance a 12"x16" or 16"x20" frame with a 8"x12" mount aperture would work well for your print.
So essentially use a mount to give that professional look, whilst creating the flexibility of filling that extra space on your wall whilst enhancing your image.
How to Frame your print!
To begin the framing process, you will have to have a frame, a mount and your print. For those who are on a budget, you can use masking tape or some other decorative tape such as washi tape - but we recommend that if you're serious about your work and want it to look more professional then you go with framers tape.
Framing tape is designed to not bleed through to your art, not damage the print and allow for some flexibility and movement. So we would recommend investing in some if your planning on framing a valuable picture.
Remove any packaging from your frame and take off the backing board by pulling on the metal clasps.
Take out anything behind the backing board, like the mount or the paper that comes with the frame. You should now just have the frame with its glass or acrylic pane.
If your using glass
Then clean the glass with a soft cloth and even use a small hoover to get all of the little bits of dust off the glass.
If your using acrylic
Take the protective film of the acrylic and turn the acrylic over, then leave the second protective film on till the last moment - This is because acrylic is very static when you first pull the film off and will pick up dust like no tomorrow. It also scratches very easily so you don't want to be cleaning it unless you have to.
Covering the table with a clean, plain white piece of paper, take your mount and place it face down onto the table. Next, lay your printed design over the aperture of the mount card so that they are also facing downwards.
Use tape to make small cuts at each corner to hold everything in place vertically. This is a pretty tentative step because if you've placed your print straight then there's no need for any corrections! But if you think it might be a little off then simply move the card around to get it just how you like it.
When you're happy with the placement of your print and mount, cut long strips of framing tape and tape along the edges and make sure that it doesn't extend past the edge of the print and mount.
Make sure the tape is pressed against the print and mount nicely using a rolling motion to help stop the print from rolling up.
Replace the backing board and well done you have just framed your print correctly.
The anatomy of framing
Fancy one of our Photographic Prints?
Why your here, why not check out our prints we have for sale at Sebastien Coell Photography, We can even frame them for you too save all the hassle of doing it yourself.
Hanging your print on your wall
When choosing where you want to hang your picture frames, keep sunlight in mind. The chemicals used in the ink during printing can interact with air and light, causing a photo fade, reducing the contrast in the print and ultimately destroying the image.
To prevent this do not hang photos in direct sunlight or on walls facing east or west.
Also pay attention to what type of print finish you use, glossy prints can pick up a lot of reflections, which means a brightly lit room or strong sunlight and lots windows can make these hard to view, in this situation a matt or lustre print might be a better solution.
Where to purchase your frames.
There is practically an endless supply of frames on the internet these days and even several high street shops and chains that stock a wide array of frames for you to purchase. If your stuck on places to buy your frames have a look at the places below to see the frames they have for sale.
You probably won't find a better supply of frames than Amazon you can see classic designs like the Hampton Frame (Amazon Referral Link)
Frames from the high-street
We hope you found this guide useful if you have any tips on how to frame your photos, why not let us know in the Comments box below!
You might find our blog on Why Wall Art Matters in your Home and The Benefits it can bring to your Health useful
Meet the Author:
I am a Devon based photographer, who enjoys travel, hiking, rugby and photographing the beautiful world in which we live in, I see photography as a creative expression upon visiting beautiful places. Each picture often tells a story.
Thank you for reading this article, please feel to share it with your friends and please check out all my photography - and Home Decor Wall Art for Sale
Sebastien Coell Photography
Note the two links to the frames in the article are amazon referral links and As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Note this does not change the fee you have to pay and does not affect the price for the frames at all.