Standard size frames for 12x18 prints?

Started Aug 10, 2009 | Discussions
robbrauen Junior Member • Posts: 46
Standard size frames for 12x18 prints?

Although I know there are 100s of choices, are there some general standards for matting and Framing a 12x18 print?

I'm looking for a general "standard" gallery frame size (16x20 or 16 x 22 or 16x24...etc) and general standard gallery matte width, within that frame (2" or 1" around...etc).

Also, is there a standard matte overlap (1/16", 1/8" or 1/4") and is that ususally photo-covering or is the general practice to print the 12x18 on a larger paper size (12 1/2 x 18 1/2)?

Thanks for any help!

F1 Forever Regular Member • Posts: 394
My Thoughts

I use a standard formula. Double mat with black core black under white core white mat board. The black border is 1/4". The whole mat is cut 6 inches larger than the photo size. For 12x18 then it would be 18x22. I generally leave 1/2 inch of white space around the photo to make the mounting process easier.

This way, for better or worse, my photos are relatively easy to pick out of a crowd because of their consistency. Let the photo do the talking - not the mat, etc.

Your mileage may vary.
--
Dick
http://www.pbase.com/f1forever
'Believe those searching for truth. Doubt those who have found it.

 F1 Forever's gear list:F1 Forever's gear list
Canon PowerShot SX50 HS Canon EOS 20D Canon EF 50mm F1.4 USM Canon EF 300mm f/4.0L IS USM Canon EF 16-35mm F2.8L II USM +4 more
lone_dingo Regular Member • Posts: 476
Re: Standard size frames for 12x18 prints?

robbrauen wrote:

Although I know there are 100s of choices, are there some general standards for matting and Framing a 12x18 print?

I'm looking for a general "standard" gallery frame size (16x20 or 16 x 22 or 16x24...etc) and general standard gallery matte width, within that frame (2" or 1" around...etc).

Also, is there a standard matte overlap (1/16", 1/8" or 1/4") and is that ususally photo-covering or is the general practice to print the 12x18 on a larger paper size (12 1/2 x 18 1/2)?

Thanks for any help!

25% of the W/H is my initial matt over size. Occasionally I'll come down to 15% but only if the frame is bland. No matt at all is common for thin aluminium frames.

A 16 x 20 print would have a matt roughly 20 x 24... Even up to 30% over for wide frames.

It is best to leave 10mm or 1/4" all round for matt placement to avoid the likely hood of the matt getting a twist at the cut when it's stuck down to the back board.

Are you planning on using a vacuum press, glue or a heat press to mount the print without air bubbles? You can still buy "Jac" brand double sided adhesive film - used to sold by Ilford as mounting film.

-- hide signature --

My Anonymity is an ethical choice.

calson Forum Pro • Posts: 10,717
lightimpressionsdirect.com

I print as 12x18 and use mats from http://www.lightimpressionsdirect.com that have this size opening (actually about 1/4" smaller) and fit standard size frames. It saves time and money. In about half the cases a 12x18 image will be stronger if it is cropped to create a 11x14 ratio image and in those instances I print it as a 11x14.

 calson's gear list:calson's gear list
Nikon D5 Nikon D850
Jim Hammond Senior Member • Posts: 1,362
Aspect Ratio

Welcome to the problem everyone faces when trying to frame a full aspect digital image. There seems to be no standard and the common 2x3 sensor equates to a 8x12 or 12x18 image but try to find frames in this size. I print in standard 5x7, 8x10, 11x14 print sizes and have to crop crop crop my image every time. It's a big waste of disk space. You can find some places that carry 12x18 frames but not nearly enough. I would look into special order frames, online.
--
http://www.jhstudio.zenfolio.com

lone_dingo Regular Member • Posts: 476
Re: Aspect Ratio

Jim Hammond wrote:

Welcome to the problem everyone faces when trying to frame a full aspect digital image. There seems to be no standard and the common 2x3 sensor equates to a 8x12 or 12x18 image but try to find frames in this size. I print in standard 5x7, 8x10, 11x14 print sizes and have to crop crop crop my image every time. It's a big waste of disk space. You can find some places that carry 12x18 frames but not nearly enough. I would look into special order frames, online.
--
http://www.jhstudio.zenfolio.com

It's a region specific thing I think. Any country still measuring a Roman foot in grains of wheat is clearly not going to have an over supply of ISO standard frames.

According to those who passed long before my arrival, the "perfect portrait" is a 4:3 aspect ration which pretty much means anything 3:2 (35mm film frame size) is not going to suite a portrait orientation.

Then again, a 16:3 is nice landscape size abut can you buy frames?

North American dwellers get lots of 8x10 frames cheap. Europeans on the other hand get lots of A4 frames. Australia is more fortunate. We get the rubbish dumped as left overs from both markets!

-- hide signature --

My Anonymity is an ethical choice.

Gato Amarillo Veteran Member • Posts: 8,686
Re: Standard size frames for 12x18 prints?

Depends a lot on your target audience. Art galleries and museums will usually prefer very simple matting and framing, while portrait and wedding clients will often prefer something more elaborate, as will the decor market.

For photos this size I would say at least a 2.5 to 3 inch mat on all sides. Custom is to have the same width all the way round or same with on top and sides with a wider margin on the bottom, but that's not a rigid rule. Sticking to off-the-shelf sizes can make life easier and hold down costs, but if you set your own standard and order in bulk you can have mats custom cut for very little extra cost. The same for frames.

Seems most common these days to have the mat slightly overlap the photo -- standard mats are cut 1/2 inch undersize for 1/4 inch overlap. I prefer to print on oversize paper, but that can be expensive if you use a lab.

For fine art, any mounting you use should be "reversible" -- that is you should be able to remove the print from the backing or mat. However, for portrait clients photographers often prefer to permanently attach the print to the backing to minimize the chance of ripple developing.

-- hide signature --

Street Fashion and Alternative Portraits:
http://www.silvermirage.com

Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum MMy threads