Signing prints, titles, and mattes
I've noticed that people like to sign their prints, and people like to buy signed prints. It seems to add value. But I tend to think that the signature is distracting if it occurs right on the border of the image. Does anyone ever sign down in the corner of the matte? Of course then the print itself is not signed, but you could sign the back.
Also, if you title prints, how do you display the title? Titling doesn't seem to be super-popular, but then I have a skewed persective, because all you ever see on the internet is digital images themselves, and rarely images of finished prints. All the prints I've seen at galleries or homes tend to be signed on the border, and if titled, they are titled external to the frame by the gallery/displayor.
One further question. Mattes are popular, and mattes are fine. But does anyone ever print a smaller image into the center of some paper and leave large matte-sized white border around it? A good way to waste paper perhaps, and the print touches the glass that way.
The signature doesn't add much on the matte, especially if it gets re framed.
The matte adds physical depth that a white border can't.
Mark Barendt, Beaverton, OR
"We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin
I sign the inner mat of a double-matted mount at the lower right corner of the "reveal." I hinge mount behind a window and also sign the actual print on the back. I make a computer printed card with my name, contact details, and the title, and sometimes even a brief comment about the picture. I apply that to the back with double-sided tape. I also put the title on the back of the print (and the date). If I wanted it visible on the front, I would write it on the inner mat at the lower left. I've done that occasionally, but not lately.
Based on limited experience with using those glass "clip frames" years ago, I would not want to have the glass contact my prints. YMMV
And I am nobody, so my methods do not carry any particular significance!
i have a series that is printed so the image is surrounded by a huge amount of wide border, all part of the paper itself. They are framed using interspacing so the print it's self does not touch the glass.
prints and touching glass is not a good thing as after awhile they stick together.
i don't title prints, altho sometimes they do have a working name.
when i sell something i sign the print under the print in pencil, it will depend on the manner in which i have matted it; sometimes i sign verso; again depends on the print and the way it is displayed.
I mount my photographs to 2 ply mountboard of the same brand and color as the 4 ply mat, cutting the mat 1/4" wider at each side and the top and 1/2" wider than the bottom of the print. This adds a subtle depth to the finished and framed photograph that is less than double matting, and does not sacrifice any of the image area to a window mat. I sign and title the photograph on the revealed mountboard, using light pencil strokes so as not to draw attention away from the photograph. I almost always title my pictures, unless a name does not seem readily apparent. If I have to work too hard to find a name, I think that the picture just does not need one, and leave it untitled.
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when i mat/frame things they are window mattted
( as ann said the emulsion will warm and swell and stick
to the glass like glue if the print is just against glass )
with 4 ply or 8ply board ... i sigh/date the lower right corner
in pencil and sign the back of the print.
i haven't figured out how to sign photo-books i make yet
things i make that are "plak mounted" i sign the back of the mount ( in pencil ) ..
I also window mat with a 1/2 inch border. I sign in pencil the lower right corner, edition number in the lower left corner. I also stamp the back with copyright info which has spaces for the title of the print and number of prints in the edition.
signing the matte doesn't mean much from the collector's point of view.....and please, no titles...save that for your book or a separate label if you're exhibiting. Signature and edn. no. is more than enough IMO.
Although signing the mat is ok for visibility, it is not a permanent part of the artwork and may be replaced so you also want to sign the print somewhere such as the back or perhaps a paper border covered by the mat.
I wonder if anyone embosses their prints anymore? I know it's terribly oldfashioned but then i'm rather partial to brass plates as well...grin. Looks great with traditional landscapes and such. You know-'Monarch of the glen'.....that sort of thing.