Photography & Portraits

Photography and Portraits

.Photograph showing fading from UV and damage from direct contact with glazing
Being a total photo fanatic and cherishing family photos and videos this is an area of passion for me. Ironically when I came to put this website together I looked around for examples of do’s and don’t in my own home, well you know what they say about a shoemakers kids? I took down a very old photo from my childhood in Canada and yes it had faded but it had also stuck to the glass. This is so easily avoided or at least minimised. Even if you choose to pick up a premade frame make sure there is a proper mat board (not just a paper surround) or take the photogragh and frame to a framer to have an inert spacer put into the frame to stop the photo being in contact with the glass.

If your photographs is precious to you there is so much to consider before framing it and forgetting about it’s safety. Various printing processes render more or less colour stability, some photsgraphic papers are damaging in their own rite to your photogragh. You will find very few print shop staff  are actually forthcoming or even capable of discussing the techniques, dyes/pigments, and papers they use. While we can do our very best to frame your photography in a way which helps to preserve it, your photo will last much longer if your choose the best possible print materials, pigments on porous paper are more stable than dyes on swellable paper. To read more I have provided a link an Image Permanence  Institute Document on
Consumers Guide to Traditional Digital Print Stability

Once your photo is framed you need to consider how best to display it. While it is extremely important to place your framed photos in a decorative way it is also important to conside their preservation. While our Care of Your Artwork  Page has a lot of quick tips for hanging and caring for framed art, photography is a little specialized so I will list a few facts which may help guide you in your choices when you come to print & frame and display your photos.

  • Print your photos on porous, lignin free paper using pigment based ink not dye, home printing is not as stable.
  • Photos consider our room temperature Hot, the cooler they are the longer they last
  • Choose a wall not illuminated by direct sunlight at any time of the year, sunlight is the most damaging light for photos
  • Fluorecent has more light energy than  tungsten
  • Use low wattage bulbs
  • If your double the distance of your photo from the light souce it reduces the light level four times!
  • Try to use UV filtering glass
  • Poor quality framing materials can actively cause damage to the photo, lignin a natural wood/paper  product causes paper to become brown and brittle
  • Using conservation framing materils will extend the life of your framed  photo
  • Moisture  can cause mould growth or cause the photo to adhere to the glazing
  • Avoid hanging photos in high moisture areas and alwasy use a spacer or mat board
  • Remove photos from the room when you are painting and keep them out for a few weeks

We tend to have a blind faith in digital files lasting forever, but they are notoriously undependable.  A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Back up and Keep up with technology BUT don’t forget about tradition. Good prints of your photographs is extra insurance!