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Author Topic: How to display photographic prints in an ordinary home?  (Read 6250 times)
Isaac
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« on: May 31, 2013, 10:51:42 AM »
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Is there a sensible way to display photographs that doesn't involve lights for each print?

Let's ignore LCD displays and large screen TV displays.
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PeterAit
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« Reply #1 on: May 31, 2013, 12:06:31 PM »
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Hang 'em up. You cannot have ideal display conditions everywhere.
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Peter
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Isaac
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« Reply #2 on: May 31, 2013, 12:41:39 PM »
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Hang 'em up, and then shine some spotlights on them?
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sdwilsonsct
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« Reply #3 on: May 31, 2013, 01:35:06 PM »
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I know a painter who is happy with track lighting and bright bulbs. Have a look in your nearest gallery.
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PeterAit
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« Reply #4 on: May 31, 2013, 03:22:06 PM »
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Continuing this thread, I have set up a mini-gallery in the entrance hallway of my home. It is about 8 feet wide and can show only a few prints, which I rotate regularly. The lighting is, during the day, mostly daylight. At night it is the completely ordinary ceiling lights. Lucky for me, the people who come and see my prints are not pixel-peepers (shudder) or color balance fanatics. They are ordinary people, many of them artists, who can appreciate my photos without obsessing about the lighting.
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Peter
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Isaac
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« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2013, 04:58:38 PM »
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Thanks, I'm choosing to be amused that monitor calibration works well enough for the online print service to provide prints that are a decent color match; but then the're dark walls, reflective glass, anti-reflective glass, ...

otoh the matte 8x10 prints that are held onto the refrigerator with magnets look great Smiley
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AFairley
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« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2013, 05:38:25 PM »
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I just put em on the walls.  I have 4 prints in the dining room that rotate, I would put in ceiling tracks to light them property, but the wife is cool to the idea.
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bill t.
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« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2013, 11:16:23 PM »
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Kitchens are often the best lighted room in the house.  When I deliver pieces to customers I often try to first put it down in the kitchen or other brightly lighted area to established that it looks terrific in decent light, unlike how it may well look on their black-hole living room wall.

If you have poor lighting in your "gallery" you can to some extent make your prints look better by printing them "up" a bit.  Look at the bell curve of your histogram and kind of the shimmy the hump over about 10% to right.  The idealized Solux evaluation setups many of us use will often result in prints that are a bit dark for the average living room wall in the absence of dedicated track lighting or recessed ceiling lights.

Oh, get some pushpins!  Have seen at least a few hoidy-toity gallery shows with very pricey prints attached to the wall with thumb tacks and pushpins.  Or if you can convince your prints to flatten out, a simple moulding ledge along the length of a wall creates a good temporary support for prints with a little weight as when matted or mounted.  The deluxe version calls for a piece of moulding top and bottom spaced to glomp onto your favored print size.  Or hang up a piece of 4 x 8 x 1/2" foam core on the wall supported by two nails at the upper corners and sink your pushpins into that.

Or you can frame them and hang them up, there's a novel idea!  I believe there are framing systems designed so you can easily slip prints in and out of a nicely matted framing presentation.  And actually, it's not very hard to swap prints in and out of a prissy metal sectional style frame, if temporary is the name of the game you can just tape the print to the back of the matte then swap it out when the mood is there.
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Isaac
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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2013, 02:20:19 AM »
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If you have poor lighting in your "gallery" you can to some extent make your prints look better by printing them "up" a bit.

I admit I was wondering about that and a loud voice in my head shouted don't be stupid light them properly ;-)
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jeremyrh
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« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2013, 05:02:10 AM »
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Oh, get some pushpins!  Have seen at least a few hoidy-toity gallery shows with very pricey prints attached to the wall with thumb tacks and pushpins.  Or if you can convince your prints to flatten out, a simple moulding ledge along the length of a wall creates a good temporary support for prints with a little weight as when matted or mounted.  The deluxe version calls for a piece of moulding top and bottom spaced to glomp onto your favored print size.  Or hang up a piece of 4 x 8 x 1/2" foam core on the wall supported by two nails at the upper corners and sink your pushpins into that.
Not pushpins but I use bulldog clips to hang prints from little nails for an informal display of prints. Same clips at the bottom to provide a bit of wright.
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JimAscher
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2013, 09:09:07 AM »
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I use a metal sheeting attached to the wall with the photos affixed with magnetic pins.  This method was described elsewhere in this forum recently, but I can't readily locate it again right now.
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Jim Ascher

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Isaac
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« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2013, 01:05:35 PM »
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Any special lighting?
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JimAscher
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« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2013, 01:23:44 PM »
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Any special lighting?

As the photos, held to the metal sheeting by small magnets, would necessarily not be formally framed under glass, but "haphazardly' arranged by size and number, broad, overall lighting covering the entire metal sheeting would seem more appropriate then pinpointed "spot' lighting, in my opinion. 
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Jim Ascher

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Alan Klein
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« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2013, 01:48:11 PM »
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I had about 25 16x20 inch photos displayed around my place until my wife started to replace them with things she liked.  I guess I'm down to about 4 still mounted.  I've given some of the remainders away to other family. They actually look better in other people's houses.  Plus I get the ego satisfaction that whenever I visit, I see my work displayed in their house.  Any they still thank me for it as well.

I still got  a bunch.  Anyone want any?
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JimAscher
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« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2013, 02:00:10 PM »
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I believe the "transient" nature of my photos attached magnetically to the sheeting enables me to rotate them more frequently, especially as new ones are taken and processed.  Ultimately I can determine whether to relegate them to the trash bin, or my archives, or give them to any guests who might "admire" them (after suitably framing them first).   
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Jim Ascher

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SunnyUK
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« Reply #15 on: June 18, 2013, 04:32:04 AM »
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Ikea sells some narrow picture ledges with a small "lip". I used to have all the empty room on the side of the staircases covered which gave me space for a rotating exhibition of ~25 prints. Now that I've sold the house and am buying a new one with the lady friend, I've started negotiations over how much space we can use for prints. So far I'm up to two prints in exchange for turning a spare bedroom into a dressing room for her (somehow I don't think my negotiation skills are all that they used to be)
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dbolt
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« Reply #16 on: June 18, 2013, 07:55:30 AM »
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I had about 25 16x20 inch photos displayed around my place until my wife started to replace them with things she liked. 



I read your comment to my wife and she laughed a bit too long and hard....
And, I only have 12 on our walls.

doug
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Doug Bolt
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Justan
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« Reply #17 on: June 20, 2013, 09:39:49 AM »
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As was written above, putting works close to windows or existing overhead light fixtures makes for good locations. If there is track lighting nearby, itís easy and inexpensive to add lights. I just did this for a show at a restaurant. It cost about $20 per fixture, including the bulb, and the results are excellent. For places where track light wasnít an option, I got some clip-on light fixtures from the Home Despot for about $10 each. These come with a 20 watt clear bulb, connects to a wall outlet, and clips on the picture frame. For wider works, I use 2 of these.

There are a lot of really nice picture lights on the market but the cost for most of the better ones is in the $40 or > range.

You can tweak prints to be lighter when you know the ambient lighting is going to be less than ideal, but there may be a problem at some time if the image is relocated to a different (read that more illuminated) location.

Clip-on light fixtures are inexpensive at least and if not pretty, they bring light to nearly anywhere there is an electrical outlet nearby.
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Isaac
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« Reply #18 on: June 22, 2013, 10:44:54 AM »
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 Justan, thanks for those suggestions.
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SunnyUK
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« Reply #19 on: July 26, 2013, 03:19:42 AM »
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As was written above, putting works close to windows or existing overhead light fixtures makes for good locations. If there is track lighting nearby, itís easy and inexpensive to add lights. I just did this for a show at a restaurant. It cost about $20 per fixture, including the bulb, and the results are excellent. For places where track light wasnít an option, I got some clip-on light fixtures from the Home Despot for about $10 each. These come with a 20 watt clear bulb, connects to a wall outlet, and clips on the picture frame. For wider works, I use 2 of these.


My problem with clip on lights is that I find the electric wires running up and down the wall ugly. Track lighting makes sense though... now I need to convince Herself that we need track lighting throughout the house. Hmmmm Wink
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