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  1. #11

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    IMO 16x20 is big and the image has to be able to stand up to that much white space. I'm not saying it is not possible because I have some that do. Both mine and other folks. On the other hand I some that seem diminished in that size. An 11x14 mat fits them well. I say it depends on the image.

    I had a prof who said "if you have a bad print make sure you frame it in an expensive custom frame so people see the framing and will hopefully forget you bought or made bad art."
    Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI

    So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004

  2. #12
    mfobrien's Avatar
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    IMHO 16x20 is too big for an 8x10. You are spending a lot of extra $$ for that big piece of mat board. 11 x14, or 13 x 15 is probably a good compromise. If you go 13 x 15, then all the borders are 2.5" making the overmat cuts a simple process. But as others have said, it depends on the strength of the image. Personally, I think huge-ass mats are pretentious -- look at what is used in art galleries that are showing prints by Adams, weston, and others. No big-ass overmats. That's just MY opinion.
    Mark O'Brien -
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  3. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by mfobrien
    IMHO 16x20 is too big for an 8x10. You are spending a lot of extra $$ for that big piece of mat board. 11 x14, or 13 x 15 is probably a good compromise. If you go 13 x 15, then all the borders are 2.5" making the overmat cuts a simple process. But as others have said, it depends on the strength of the image. Personally, I think huge-ass mats are pretentious -- look at what is used in art galleries that are showing prints by Adams, weston, and others. No big-ass overmats. That's just MY opinion.

    Wrong. A few years back I went to an Ansel Adams show which was showing only his 4x5 polaroid prints. EACH print was mounted and overmatted too 30x40 (full sheets of mat?). Personally, I think it was overkill...but it was Adams work, so I guess he can get away with that.

    Also, I went to a show at a local gallery in Prescott AZ on pinhole photography. There were some images that were only 2 1/4" in size, but were matted and framed too 30x30 and VERY large sizes. Again, I though it was overkill...but I would rather see an image with a large mat and frame, then a small one.

  4. #14

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    I like the 8x10 matted to 16x20 look and present my work this way. In terms of getting the price I want for my work it also helps. The small amount extra in matting, glass and framing "creates" a larger piece of art. It's part of the psychological aspect of selling.

  5. #15
    Alex Hawley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McPhotoX
    Wrong. A few years back I went to an Ansel Adams show which was showing only his 4x5 polaroid prints. EACH print was mounted and overmatted too 30x40 (full sheets of mat?). Personally, I think it was overkill...but it was Adams work, so I guess he can get away with that.

    Also, I went to a show at a local gallery in Prescott AZ on pinhole photography. There were some images that were only 2 1/4" in size, but were matted and framed too 30x30 and VERY large sizes. Again, I though it was overkill...but I would rather see an image with a large mat and frame, then a small one.
    Mounting a 4x5 on a 30x40 IS extreme. Sounds more like Andy Warhol than Ansel Adams. Maybe Ansel was having some satiric fun?

    All of these responses have good points, some of which I hadn't ever thought of. Thanks Gentlemen.
    Semper Fi & God Bless America
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  6. #16
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    While I agree with what you're doing for aesthetic reasons, I've found that people complain about the cost of framing odd-sized mats bitterly, and it can cost you the sale. In the case of some of my odd-sized pieces (my panoramics from my xpan) I sell them pre-framed, and charge a very reasonable price for the framing, so people will buy them as I've framed it, so I know it will be tasteful . The panoramics are the one size I don't frame with large borders, because they quickly get into oversize frames and mats, which gets expensive and/or wasteful, especially when you're framing with 8ply mat board.

    Thinking of which, I now exclusively use 8ply for my own matting because it looks so much better, cost be damned.

    Quote Originally Posted by McPhotoX
    Probably the main reason why I do not mat my 8x10 prints too 16x20 anymore, is because 16x20 is a standard frame size. When selling photography in a standard frame size, people tend to purchase cheep, premade frames. These frames are usually not good quality and there is not much a selection...so people end up putting a beautiful photograph is a cheep walmart frame!

    By using 14x17 (or some other random size), it requires the buyer of my prints to have the print custom framed, therefore getting a better quality frame, but also getting a frame that would compliment the photograph and match their home. By doing this, they have more selection and can get a frame that not only looks well with the photograph, but also will look good in their house! Custom frames are usually sealed on the back also, which stops dust and bugs from getting inside.

    I no longer use Standard frames sizes for my photography for this reason, but also because there are sizes that I think look better then just standard sizes. I get tired of seeing everyone frame their photography too 16x20, because it starts too look generic to me. Here are my normal sizes-
    4x5, 5x7, 8x10- 14x17.
    11x14- 18x22.
    16x20- 25x29.

    Take care,

    Ryan McIntosh

  7. #17

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    I use 16x20 mounts and frames vertically for my 8" sq prints, with the image positioned above the centre. They look correctly proportioned to me.

  8. #18

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    I think that oversize mats work best with small prints (4X5 and 5X7). The upper limit being 5X7. Broad mat borders isolate the print and draw a person in to see the small print. That is not the case with an 8X10 print because the 8X10 print is of sufficient size to be seen from a greater distance.

    The mat size that I would use for all print sizes is 13X16. It utilizes full size sheets most effectively. It also allows off center vertical positioning which I appreciate.

    As others have said, I think that an oversize mat on an 8X10 print is pretentious. If anything, for me, it detracts from the print.

  9. #19

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    As suggested earlier, a vertical 8X10 image looks good in a 16X20 frame; but a horizontal image seems to have the extra white space in wrong location. I'm trying 16X18 for those horizontal images.
    van Huyck Photo
    "Progress is only a direction, and it's often the wrong direction"

  10. #20

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    Personally I prefer...

    14x17 for a vertical 8x10
    16x15 for a horizontal 8x10

    3" on the sides and top, 4" on the bottom. This seems to be a good rule of thumb from small to big... As with anything, if it looks good, it is good.

    joe

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