For pt/pd prints I use natural white and for silver I use bright white. For metal sectional frames I use either silver, matte silver, flat black or contrast gray for silver prints and for pt/pd a German silver (a warm matte silver) frame. For wood frames I select from the framer's samples or use a museum frame in a warm black that he blended which works for both pt/pd and silver.
On the occasions of having an exhibition I try to keep one color of frame for all. If metal sectional and both pt/pd and silver prints I would use the German silver and if wood the warm black.
A very basic guideline for mat selction for photography, is to avoid using a white that is brighter than the brightest white in the image. That is why Pearl White in the Alphrarag line and Photo White in the Alphamat matboard line are so popular. Both are just a little off white but yet a cream.
In the case of sepia toning it gets more complicated since you no longer have any true whites. A couple other general guidelines are use of top mat that matches a color that is present in the image but only a little and that you would like to help bring it out more. Since you have two colors you are concerned about you might consider using a double mat. A couple things to try: Perhaps use Pearl as the top mat, but then use a browner bottom mat board. You can also try a browner top mat that is closer to a brown very prevalent in the image then use a Pearl mat as the bottom mat to help separate the image from the mat since they will tend to bleed together. I just took advantage of the bevel being white on a black mat to get a similar effect in this photo. Here this image is very low key and mostly black and I used black mat with a white core. The white core helps to separate the image from the mat. I could provide a more noticable separation with a white bottom mat.
This photo is very high key and mostly white so although the mat board is white I used one with a black core which is the same as using a black bottom double mat:
Make sure you get mat samples to lay on the image when trying to figure this out.
Thank you. Your Pearl White selection is my favorite. In fact, that's what I ordered for this image and all other B&W images. This particular one is a bit complicated as parts of the images are lightly selenium toned ONLY and the rest is toned in both lightly selenium and heavily brown.
Funny as you suggest double matting because that is what I am considering. Pearl as a top mat, and Almond (from AlphaMat) as bottom mat.
Another thing I'm thinking is, to float mount this image onto a white 2 ply mount board and use Pearl as an over-mat.
I kind of have to use Pearl as a top mat in any case as this will be one of the piece in a set.
That sounds like a great plan. You can do some cool stuff with double mats and intricate frames but it is really hard to do that and keep a gallery presentation theme intact.
In custom picture framing the frame package becomes an extension of the art and in ideal cases it becomes an extension of the place where the picture frame will be displayed. The photo becomes a part of a larger art piece...the room. Some times custom framers have to do things they feel hurt the image and use a mat or frame color that is wrong for the image but matches a sofa in the clients house. In gallery style framing the idea is the opposite. A simple white mat, black frame to set the image off the wall and highlight it without detracting from the image.
In your case your primary mat will be the same as the rest of the pieces in your display maintaining your theme but you will have small bottom mat that sets the image off from the Pearl White mat so that it is not distracting from the image.
Originally Posted by tkamiya
Originally Posted by tron_
I'd prefer cow prints myself....
I am happy to report, the combination of Pearl White and Almond worked. Actually, I had to source the material locally so it's not exactly those colors but basically an identical combination.
Pearl white nicely separates the image from the wall and makes nice transition. Almond picks up the tone in the image and enhance but not over-power.
I'll see if I can take a photo of this and post....
Please excuse the poor lighting technique. It was done in my living room. I color corrected it but that's all I can do.
This image was selenium toned first, then tourist, road, and posts were covered with rubber cement like material, then heavily brown toned. This is an image of Tulum ruins in Mexico.
Nicely done, tho it seems unfortunate that the "almond" board is not solidly colored and has instead a white core. A bit picky of me, and probably really not a real issue -- just something that caught my eye.
Yes, I know.... The local store does not carry color-all-the-way-through kind. I'd prefer it if I had that choice.