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Author Topic: Canvas backing  (Read 912 times)
rgvsdigitalpimp
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« on: February 24, 2013, 12:14:48 AM »
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Well I went ahead and ordered tyvek backing for my canvas prints.  Wow trying to cut the tyvek to perfect rear frame size and keeping it all straight is a challenge!  Anyone have any pointers?  Place frame on top of tyvek and cut with razor?  Mark with something to see where to cut?  I can't seem to find anywhere online with instruction on how to do this.  Any help would be greatly appreciated
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bill t.
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« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2013, 12:52:39 AM »
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First of all, there is a large school of opinion that you don't have to back framed canvases.  Enough said.  I am in that school.

OK, you outline the backside perimeter of the frame with adhesive transfer tape, using one of those enormously irritating Scotch Adhesive Transfer Tape Dispensers, an invention of Devil to keep framers from ever becoming happy people.  Bring the edge of the tape to about 1/8" of the edge, all the way around.  Lay the frame down on a piece of Tyvek, or Kraft paper, or whatever, and touch one of the sides.  Now slightly tension the opposite side of the Tyvek, and lower the rest of the frame.  Kind of like stretching canvas, only different.  You'll develop your own little tricks for doing this step, it's a personal sort of thing.

Now, here's the fun part.  Grasp the #11 blade of an Xacto knife between your thumb and the next finger.  Now place you middle finger against the side of the frame, with the point of the blade about 1/8" in from the edge on the back side.  Kinda smoosh the middle finger against the blade holding fingers, so all three fingers of a single unit, and use that configuration to guide the blade along the cut.  Zip, zip, zip, and zip.  You're done!  Have the Bactine and a bandaid handy.

Alternatively, you can slice and dice with one of these, look about 40% of the way down the page...

http://www.framingsupplies.com/ToolsTapesGlues/ToolsTapesGlues2.htm

Tyvek is the right choice, if you use paper your clients will put their fingers through within 2 seconds of being handed the frame.  Of course, strictly speaking, nothing at all is the right choice.  But that's just me.

Edit...oh wait, you probably meant unframed gallery wraps.  Just don't do it.  If there is any moral obligation to back canvases, it is only when they are placed in picture framing frame, and then only arguably so.  For one thing, if you are using stretcher bars with adjustable corners, the Tyvek will turn a simple tightening operation sometime in the future into a total PITA.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2013, 01:01:03 AM by bill t. » Logged
rgvsdigitalpimp
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« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2013, 01:03:08 AM »
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Bill thanks for the reply.  I personally never cover the back.  I just never really liked the look of bare cut canvas with staples on the back.  Especially if clients will be selling these for couple hundred dollars.  All the "big" photogs in this area are already accustomed to ordering canvas prints online from whcc or other companies and they always come covered.  So when they see mine not covered it kind of throws them off (at least I think it does).  Bill, would you be so kind as to take a photo of what one of your canvas prints looks like from behind?  I'm curious as to what the experts on here do.  Thanks!
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bill t.
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« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2013, 01:10:02 AM »
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From the back, my canvas prints look like they're mounted on Gatorfoam, using glue.  All of them have frames around them.

But I share a few art galleries with oil painters selling gallery wrapped canvases for $10k+, and from the back they look as bare and un-tyveked as you could like.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2013, 01:12:02 AM by bill t. » Logged
rgvsdigitalpimp
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« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2013, 01:57:00 AM »
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You've got a very good point there, Bill.  Thanks for your input. 
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Dan Berg
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« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2013, 09:03:49 AM »
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I use Lineco linen tape either white or black. Depending on the color of printed canvas that folds around the back.
Whatever looks nicest.
Covers the staples and looks professional.
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kdphotography
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« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2013, 09:10:11 AM »
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I'm with Bill---and don't cover the back of a stretched canvas----unless there is absolutely a need to do so (like body surfing in the ocean, but that's another story.... Grin)

Imho, there is no real need for a "dust cover" on the back of a stretched canvas.  I'm of the mind that people put it there partly to cover things up.  My clients often like to see how nice the corners are and the open back shows the quality of workmanship in stretching the canvas.

ken   Smiley
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mstevensphoto
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« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2013, 04:04:46 PM »
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you can save yourself a lot of brain damage by siply moving your cut in, if you're trying to cut flush with the edge of the frame you'll more likely than not nick the frame. simply move in a touch, use a razor blade or a box cutter or anything else that a normal human hand can hold and control (not a #11 blade out of a kinfe) and slowly and evenly cut right into the back of the frame. you'll get good at cutting near straight lines in no time. note, don't do this if you're backing a wrapped and unframed canvas as you'll be cutting the canvas.
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rgvsdigitalpimp
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« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2013, 07:05:19 PM »
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Funny you said that msteven.  I just tried yesterday to cut while wrapped and cut an entire side of canvas  Sad  AND customer needed it 24hrs from that time.  Emergency reprint was needed. 
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