What is the normal mat and frame for 20x24?

Discussion in 'Presentation & Marketing' started by JBrunner, Feb 18, 2009.

  1. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I'm thinking of doing some 20x24 printing, but I can't seem to wrap my head around the presentation. It seems to me that 28x32 (4 inch mat) seems logical, but I cant seem to find many frames or for that matter any glazing in that size, and I hate cutting glass.
     
  2. Allen Friday

    Allen Friday Member

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    I delivered 4 prints to a bank last week, the prints were 20x24, matted to 32x36, 6 inches around each edge. They look great on the wall. I bought section frames at Michaels and ordered glass pre-cut to size for a local glass shop. 28x32 should work also. I decided to go bigger because of the vast wall space at the bank.
     
  3. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Mine are probably too wimpy, but I have them matted and framed to 24x28.
     
  4. blokeman

    blokeman Member

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    I've framed many prints this size & I think it really depends on the image. I leave it to my framer these days, he being an extremely talented artist as well and he has that innate sense of aesthetics... he treats each image on it's 'feel' and not as a 'size'.
     
  5. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    My photo professors convinced me that the bottom side of the mat should be larger than the other three sides. It is a view point and perspective thing to anchor the image or like the Greeks cutting the columns slightly curved so they look straight on the temple. They argue that if it is the same all around it looks smaller at the bottom.

    I measure out from the image on the paper. One measurement is for a horizontal image the other for a vertical. 31 ¼ " x 29 ¼” and 27 ¼” x 33 ¼ “ Crescent Select White Glove

    I like a standard mat black Nielsen aluminum frame. The ones I get are marked S21 at American Frame. That ends up being just a ¼ inch of frame all around. Some people like much larger. The professor thought the image ought to be more important than the frame. Some people and their ideas.

    John Powers
     
  6. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

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    Someone else suggested it, but I will emphasize it! AmericanFrame.com is a great place to get any size frame you want (including glass or plexi) at the most reasonable prices around! They have some of the highest quality frames I've seen anywhere & they send all the hardware you need!

    I 'work' for the local matting & framing instructor at the jr. college and she'll commonly use a 4" border on a print that size. If you go too much bigger, you'll get into a situation where you will have to 'museum cut' the mat (so the bottom border is bigger than the top) so the picture does not appear to be 'falling'. I'd go with a simple black frame, too, but not too thin or it will make the print seem 'not quite right'. I'd also recommend plexi in this situation for lightness... unless these will be hanging in the direct sunlight, then you'll need the more expensive low-e stuff. You can go with the glare resistant if you will only be single-matting the prints too.

    Your pics are good enough that they ought to be printed big! :smile:
     
  7. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    Buy the glass locally at any glass shop. Mine is two miles away but delivers just to be sure I don't break it coming home. It is too fragile and heavy versus value to ship.

    Who is hanging these and where will they hang? Plexi is great if weight or shipping/breakage is a problem. You are talking a lot of glass weight for an older or smaller person to wrestle around on a ladder. Regular sheet glass looks great but is heavy.

    I have thirty 7x17s hanging in a Cleveland museum for 9 months. They bought the glass and mats. They said buy museum glass. The mats are cut with 3 ¼ “ on three sides and 4” on bottom. I would scale up from there to your 20x24s.

    I use American Frame for everything but glass, but then they are only 125 miles away from me. Order by 800 phone number mid week and they will spend some time with your questions. They usually ship within 24 hours unless it is near the end of a college term. Then is goes out to 48 hours or a little more.

    Just one person’s opinion. What you do is a very personal thing and as far as I know there are no set rules. There are always those who will say what ever you did is wrong, but is their work as good as their talk?

    John Powers
     
  8. eclarke

    eclarke Member

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    I do 30x351/2. It depends on if you want to overmat the print or float it. I like to float it and leave a 1/2" reveal between the print and the mat. This leaves the top and sides at equal dimensions and a little extra on the bottom. The people I buy frames from right here in town cut them to order so it's no big deal for the odd size...Evan Clarke
     
  9. ic-racer

    ic-racer Member

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    I did five for my MFA exhibit, back in 1986 and I just used full 32x40 sheets of mat board and 32x40 glass. The proportions are pretty dramatic. I made a mistake back then in using a Nielsen #11 frame. The 11 is quite flimsy at that size.
     
  10. fdi

    fdi Advertiser Advertiser

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    Unfortunately, there are no real standards for mat borders. Most mat borders are the result of placing one standard frame size into another. For example, an 11x14 will usually be matted for a 16x20 frame resulting in unequal borders of 2 1/2 and 3 inches. For an image as large as 20x24 I would not go under 2 inches and I would only do that with a thin frame. 4 inches is probably more ideal, and 5 or 6 will give it more of a gallery look but that will also dramatically increase the cost of the frame due to the size. If you are going to order from a frame wholesale company you will also want to consider shipping cost since you can end up with dimensional weight charges and over size fees. Standard mats will seldom be bottom weighted because that restricts the orientation. When selecting standard mat sizes for my company I settled on 2 inches (24x28) and 4 inches (28x32).

    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  11. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Wow. That is pretty cool.


    Here's a little more background- These will be for sale at a show. I will have a 10x10 booth. The 20x24's will be the flagships. Probably 4-5 in total. 2-3 across the back of the booth and two on each side of the front near the aisle. These will likely be on easels. 8x10 to 16x20 in bins (not framed). I could cut my costs and just frame the two for the aisle positions, and have everything else mounted and matted, but not framed. I can't figure out if people will be happy to purchase the mounted and matted print and prefer to have their own framing, or if they will prefer "turn key". I prefer less framing myself because it cuts down my financial outlay, transport difficulty, and danger of breakage and damage involved to pull off the show. If the venue was local I would offer framing options as a service, but since it isn't that will be impractical.
     
  12. Andrew Moxom

    Andrew Moxom Member

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    Jason, one other place to try out is www.documounts.com. This outfit will custom cut your mats and mount board, your frames (including assembly!), and the plexi glass to your sepcifications. They will ship as well. I used them when I had to make 20 frames for a show I had last year. The consistency and quality was superb, and very reasonably priced.
     
  13. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Will people buy plexi? Do they care? Does it look good? I've been using TruVue Museum, and love it as it's nearly invisible.
     
  14. fdi

    fdi Advertiser Advertiser

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    I am not sure exactly what type of show you will be selling your work in but it sounds more like an Artshow as opposed to a gallery. Sales in galleries tend to be mostly framed but my artshow customers tell me that 70-80% of their sales are matted only. The framed work is primarily used to get people into the booth. Since you have limited wall space, you probably want to keep your borders small at 2 inches. For matted only, most people mat, mount to foamcore and then place inside a clearbag for protection while people are flipping through them. Here is a great forum for info on selling photography at Artshows:

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/artshow_photo/

    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  15. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Thanks Mark. I pretty much figuring out that these in many ways these will be a custom job. So you guys have 28x32 for 20x24....
     
  16. fdi

    fdi Advertiser Advertiser

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    Yes and we do custom, and we are having a framing sale for APUG members.

    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  17. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

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    I might go ahead and frame the 20x24s, for presentation and protection during the show. I imagine their main purpose will be to attract people into the booth, where they might buy smaller prints. When I did a project on 20x24, I had trouble deciding on a frame size as well, so I just cut matboards that I think were 3-1/2 in. on the top (27 in. total width) and both sides, and 3-3/4 in. on the bottom (31-1/4 in. total height), and then bought sheets of non-glare Plexi and cut it to fit exactly. I backed the prints with 1/4 in. plywood, and used gaffer tape to make a 1/4 in. black border on the glass, and wrapped it around to the plywood to hold everything in position. This was because I was too cheap and broke to have 27x31-1/4 frames made, and had no time or desire to do it myself. The prints got accepted into a show, however, despite the frames made out of tape. (The juror told me he didn't even notice...it was the gallery manager who noticed.) However, there are less ghetto ways than gaffer tape to mount a print behind a frameless piece of glass...or you will be able to find pre-made frames that are 30x36, which is pretty close, though they look like fat borders to me. That is a matter of opinion, however.

    As for your questions re: Plexi, FWIW, I used to work for a museum exhibit preparation company, and while actual glass is still the standard, many individuals (not museums) prefer Plexi, for various reasons, and we always stocked it. IMHO, it looks good and is easy to work at home. However, while it is cheaper than nice glass, good quality Plexi is still not cheap.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 19, 2009
  18. ROL

    ROL Member

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    I've standardized all my monochrome print formats (4:5, 3:5, 1:2) into the following sizes based on convention, equipment limitations, and personal aesthetic (~4:5 equivalent shown):

    Print: -> Mat:
    11X14 -> 16X20
    16X20 -> 24X30
    20X24 -> 28X34
    24X30 -> 32X40
    30X40 -> 36X48

    All are slightly bottom weighted on 4-ply cotton rag museum board and floated into 8-ply beveled windows with a half inch well all the way around.

    I stopped using glass a few years ago as rough shipping can ruin a print and earthquakes (west coast) can prove hazardous to life and limb. I now use only clear acrylic.