To dry mount or not to dry mount

Discussion in 'Presentation & Marketing' started by Richard Wasserman, Feb 12, 2006.

  1. Richard Wasserman

    Richard Wasserman Member

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    I am currently printing a large body of work (about 200 images) and can't decide how to mat the photos. I will be using 2 ply board both for the backing and the mat. I have always dry mounted in the past, but I know a lot of people don't like to. I do like how flat dry mounting is, but would like to hear what other people do. Thanks

    Richard Wasserman
     
  2. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    I like to mount what I put on display. You should do it the way you want to see it, it's your show.
     
  3. Konical

    Konical Subscriber

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    Good Evening, Richard,

    No doubt you'll get varying opinions on this. Personally, I really like the appearance of a print properly dry-mounted.

    Konical
     
  4. jeroldharter

    jeroldharter Member

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    Dry mount.
     
  5. rbarker

    rbarker Member

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    You might want to consider whether the prints will be sold or simply for your own display purposes. If the latter, you're free to do what you wish, of course. If sales are anticipated, you may want to consider buyer/collector preferences.
     
  6. Alex Hawley

    Alex Hawley Member

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    There's been a lot of discussion about this in several forums. Seems to me the ones arguing the most against dry mounting are conservaters who mostly work with vintage prints or works of the great masters. Then others follow saying dry mounting decreases the collector value. IMO, this argument is made for the convenience of one group and the others are just following their lead.

    But, I don't sell to great collectors nor am I likely to ever make the great master's list. So I dry mount. Honestly, I don't see how a better looking mount can be made.
     
  7. Monophoto

    Monophoto Member

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    Dry mounting always looks better than other means of attaching prints to mount boards.
     
  8. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    I dry mount all my photos. I prefer a 4 ply board. If a person wishes to remove a FIBER based print from the board it is very easy to do so. Set your press to a temperture significantly hotter than what is used for mounting with that type of tissue. Heat the print until the corners are pulling away from the mat board. Grab the print by the corners and it will lift quite readily from the mat. Tack a new piece of tissue to the print, trim it and you are ready to dry mount it to a new board. Be careful not to burn your fingers!
     
  9. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i've never been a big fan of dry mounting.
    while it is an inexpensive alternative to a good (hinged) window mat,
    and they look clean, flat and store smaller --- there is something
    about gluing ( or waxing ) a photograph to a board i never warmed up to.

    i dry mounted prints years ago, and have regretted it ever since.

    but all that said, you should present the photographs the way you want to...

    -john
     
  10. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I hinge mount. If the conservation community comes around to accept the idea of drymounting again, I can always drymount later. Un-drymounting is possible with the right materials, but it's not easy.

    An alternative that is accepted by conservators for albumen prints, which have more of a curl problem than gelatin prints, is starch mounting. I haven't tried it yet, but it may be a reasonable compromise, particularly for single weight gelatin paper like Azo. A starch mounted print can be easily released from its support, just by soaking in distilled water. The result is flat just like a drymounted print, and seems quite long lasting. There are lots of 19th-century albumen prints out there that were mounted with starch paste, with much less regard for archival considerations than we have today, and they seem to be holding up fine. The process is described in Reilly's albumen book, which can be found at albumen.stanford.edu.
     
  11. Allen Friday

    Allen Friday Member

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    I have read everything I could find on the dry mount v. corner mount debate and have found that there are good arguments relating to "archival qualities" of both approaches. To me, it boils down to personal preference and your working methods.

    I quit dry mounting prints about a year ago and moved to corner mounts behind window matts. The reasons: 1. Over the years I have ruined several dry mounted prints by dropping the mounted prints on their edge. The edge of the matt got banged up and looked terrible. A new window matt hides the flaw in a frame, but I could never sell the photo or show it out of a frame. I had to reprint the photographs and re-mount.

    2. The matts tend to get dirty over time when they are handled. I like to replace the matts every so often, particularly for workshop prints or prints I show loose.

    With corner mounting, if I mess up or the matt gets soiled, I just removed the photo from the matt and mount on new boards
     
  12. roteague

    roteague Member

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    I personally hinge mount. Just make sure you don't store the print upside down.
     
  13. Travis Nunn

    Travis Nunn Member

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    I used to dry mount my prints but have switched to corner mounts. I like the ability to remove prints easily and mount differently if I choose to do so. Even though the "archival" drymount tissue is supposed to allow you to un-mount the print, I haven't had much luck in doing so.
     
  14. drpsilver

    drpsilver Subscriber

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    13 April 2006

    I do not know if this is the right fourm to ask this, but here I go. Has anyone considered the 3M Positional Mounting Adhesive (PMA, adhesive #568). I have had tremendous luck with it holding a print flat, and after a little pressing it is a "permanent" mount. (It could be disolved using a mild organic solvent if necessary.) It is easy to use, and does not require a large press to work well. Iti is available from Light Impressions.

    Any thoughts

    Regards,
    Darwin
     
  15. Gerald Koch

    Gerald Koch Member

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    There is an old saying that "a tattoo is something that you regret ten years later." The same can be said about a drymounted print. I know, I have some and I regret now mounting them that way.
     
  16. Gerald Koch

    Gerald Koch Member

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    Does anyone know if it is considered archival?
     
  17. Bruce Osgood

    Bruce Osgood Membership Council Council

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    Seems to me when this discussion gets around to what the galleries or whoever "requires" in a print, the tail is beginning to wag the dog. Has anyone been denied representation in a gallery, purchase by a collector or inclusion in an exibition because of the way they mount their print?
     
  18. naturephoto1

    naturephoto1 Subscriber

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    Gerald,

    As far as I know PMA is not archival and 3M never claimed that it was.

    Richard,

    I participate in a lot of Art and Art and Craft Shows (most of my income comes from these) and though I may be in a minority I archivally mount. After traveling particularly with framed photos for thousands of miles, I found that a T hinge works better than corners with mounting strips (they bunched up as they were pounded down by riding on the highway).

    Archival mounting is what is recommended for photos of value and by Museums, Galleries, and Frame shops. As pointed out, though they can and often develop a wave, they are much easier to remount.

    As to your selection of 2 ply mat boards for backing and for the window mats, I would definitely say that at least for the window mat that 2 ply is too thin. Personally I use 4 ply for backing and for double matting the window (for my editions and keeps more airspace from the glass). Some prefer a double mat, personally I think that it looks more elegant but, others do not like the appearance. Others use an 8 ply mat to maintain the air space between the photo and the glass.

    Be aware, I do not believe that you can get a very good beveled 45 degree cut with 2 ply mats. Beveled cuts should look much better with a 4 or 8 ply mat.

    Rich
     
  19. c6h6o3

    c6h6o3 Member

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    After seeing Scott Killian's and Joe Freeman's prints last week with 4 ply overmats, I'm going to switch. I might still use 2 ply for the mount because I have a lot of it, but the thicker overmat makes quite a difference.
     
  20. Gerald Koch

    Gerald Koch Member

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    That's what I suspected. Thanks.
     
  21. Lopaka

    Lopaka Member

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    3M says the product "will not stain, discolor or dry out with age" but they do not use the term "archival". It's probably ok for Ilfochrome since those cannot be heat mounted, but I don't use it for anything else. Ilfochromes may have more of an issue with buffers in certain 'archival' matrials than with the 3M pressure adhesive.

    Bob
     
  22. Mark Minard

    Mark Minard Member

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    I never liked the edge of the overmat dictating the borders of the print. So I have to dry-mount, cause I float 'em... That press cost more than my camera + enlarger combined! Plus it weighs @200 pounds. Good thing I don't move alot.

    Best,
    Mark
     
  23. Terrance Hounsell

    Terrance Hounsell Member

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    ARTCARE RESTORE >>> ARCHIVAL DRYMOUNTING!

    I dithered between drymounting and hinge mounting for years. No question that drymounting looks better but there dreaded archival question always loomed. For me the question was answered when I found ARTCARE RESTORE Foamcore. Artcare Restore is an archival heat-activated foamboard that allows art to be reversed to its pre-mounting condition.

    Ultimate Protection!
    With Artcare Restore, you can safely reverse art to its exact, pre-mounting condition. The non-permeable adhesive meets all archival standards and can be completely removed from the art. Artcare Restore’s breakthrough adhesive activates at low temperatures and short dwell times, making it safe for most art.

    Fast and Easy!
    Artcare Restore gives you the fastest, easiest and safest mounting option available. You can mount art in just 15-30 seconds on a mechanical press—or as little as 2 minutes in most vacuum presses!*

    Highest Quality!
    Artcare Restore offers an ultra smooth mount not achievable with other archival mounting methods. Artcare Restore offers a permanent mount that is reversible when reheating to 150° and removing the art.*

    Archival Plus!
    Artcare’s patented technology actively protects art from the harmful effects of outgassing and from damaging pollutants—something no other foamboard can do!

    I have been using it for nearly a year with no problems. I don't have any affiliation with the product BUT like many I struggled with mounting my prints and I just want to share my experiance with a product that really works.

    There is more information and some good drymounting application tips at:
    http://www.nielsen-bainbridge.com/bainbridge/NB-ArtcareRestore.html
     
  24. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Echoing Ms. Senft, but adding that I use a tissue by Bienfang called Buffermount on museum board. Completely reversible, it allows for a lower temp for removal. Works super, and if you screw up allot, like me, say miss your center or whatever, you can just unmount the print, and try it again. Nice flat prints. No archival compromise.