Richard Batterley PhotoGraphs

The world of captured lights

Showing off your photos - to see them at their best, put them on the wall

March 2018

You know, it's sad that most photographs are never seen at their best ... they're only ever seen on the tiny screen of a smartphone, perhaps on the slightly larger screen of a tablet or maybe on a laptop screen.


Two things wrong there.  BIG is good and screens, no matter how good, just don't give the subtlety, clarity and depth a high quality print on paper (or many other "hard copy" media) does.


When I started out on my photographic journey ... oh, far to many years ago now to think about ... we could only show other people our work when we printed it on paper or showed them a transparency.  When projecting 35 mm transparencies everyone accepted there were serious limitations of the projector and environment that had a detrimental impact on the quality of image seen on the screen.


So the best way to show a shot "in all its glory" was to get a really top quality print done ... either do it yourself in the dark room or get a laboratory to do it for you.


Today with all the electronic media we have at our finger tips too many people just don't bother putting their photos on paper and showing others just what they really have achieved ... they limit their showing off to the small screens.  And that's a shame.


It's really easy to produce a good quality paper image, that you might even put in a frame and put it on the wall.


Canon and Epsom (for example) make some fantastic printers that produce high quality A4 prints for just a few cents ... and the printers themselves cost in the $100 - $200 range.  Five colour ink jet printers, with super fine droplet size, render colours faithfully, produce super sharp detail and produce prints that are amazingly subtle when required or bold and brassy at the other end of the spectrum.  Have a look at units like the Canon MX926.


At the other end of the scale, yes the printers and ink sets are more expensive, but if you;re a professional photographer or serious enthusiast you might just want to think about one of the roll printers offered by Canon and Epsom.  I have a Canon ProGraf 2000 which produces prints 60 cms wide (so a standard print is 60 x 90 cms) and the quality is STUNNING!  The photograph below is five of my photographs printed on that printed displayed "gallery style" in a Sydney RSL Club.

And then once you've printed a few of your photos, how about framing them?  Hanging them on the wall ... either individually or as a set/collection?


If you stick to relatively modest size prints ... A4 or A3 for example ... you can find inexpensive frames in all sorts of retail outlets, and some even come with mattes included.  I know one photographer who found a "two dollar shop" that sold frames large enough to display A3 photos plus a matte for just $25.00!


And yes, if you get enthusiastic and interested, you can make your own frames and cut your own mattes.  All you need to do is buy yourself a framing kit and matte cutter ... not that expensive in the bigger scheme of things ... and the raw materials.  Plenty of places around for that sort of stuff.


Once you get over A3 size prints you probably want to think about going to a specialist framing studio to get them framed.  If you do don;t be seduced by the smooth taker behind the counter who tries to convince you to have fancy mouldings with complex mattes, because that will finish up costing you more than most photographic artists even sell their photos for - one of my clients bought a set of photos for around $300 a print and the slick talking framing studio want to charge $600 per frame!  Ouch!


Remember people are buying "photographic art" from photographers like myself, Ken Duncan and Peter Lik ... and they hang it on the walls of their homes and offices just like they used to hang paintings.  So why not put your own work on your walls?  Show it off to its best advantage.


Print it.  Frame it.  Hang it.


Over to you.