Friday, April 09, 2010

My Gallery Wrap Experiment

I have always wanted to make a gallery wrap. Recently when I was in Henry's I found this kit. I had to give it a try. It has sat on my shelf for quite sometime, but today I finally got around to finishing the project.

Overall I found the kit easy to assemble. And the finished project looks quite good, but it could have been better. There are three things that you need to consider when attempting such a project.

  1. You need an image that will look good when wrapped. Pick an image that does not have an key image elements around the perimeter. I choose a waterfall from Hawaii, but I misjudged where the pool would be when finished and how important it would be in the end. In my case it ended up being along the bottom. I should have positioned the image higher so that it was not so cropped. It matters less along the sides, I think, because they are easier to see as you approach the image. If you need a bit more space, you might be able to stretch the image by cloning some material or use Photoshop's content-aware features.
  2. Hahnemuhle does not produce ICC profiles for consumer printers. So I just had to guess. I used the Epson Matte profile. The resulting colours were a little bit flatter than I would have liked.  I guess that is another reason to get a "Pro" printer, I should be able to get the profiles for any paper I buy. (as an aside, I just bought some paper for Red River Paper, they provide a wide range of profiles for consumer printers. Thanks Red River!)
  3. Be careful when cutting the 45 degree corners. The kit has marker lines just inside the frame that they instruct not to go past. I now realize that those lines are not very accurately place. You do not want to cut inside the frame at all. I think it better to cut too little and have to cut a bit more, than to cut too much.You can see in the closeup of the corner where I went to far with the cut.

I can certainly say that this won't be my last gallery wrap. I like the visual appeal of this kind of framing. Besides the ICC profiles issue mentioned in #2, my current printer can only print 8.5x11 so can only make a 8x6 frame. I want larger printers, so a larger printer is needed for that. One thing to consider is having them made completely by a production company, like Pikto, Black's, or Mpix. All of those options will be a lot more expensive than the kit I bought. You can get the kit a lot cheaper at Amazon, if you'd prefer, Hahnemuhle Single Gallerie Wrap Photo Frame with Standard 1.25.

This is the original image I printed

and the finished gallery wrap hanging on my wall..

As I have said just the other day, the important thing is to do something with your images.

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