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Printing Large!

Posted by
Ian Bramham (Manchester, United Kingdom) on 13 February 2008 in Miscellaneous and Portfolio.

If I've been a bit quiet over the last few days it's because I've finally been getting around to printing and framing a couple of my better photos.

Both these shots are from my Nikon D40 with Sigma 10-20 lens. Here's the links to where they are posted on AM3 if you want a closer look.
(the Aminus addresses seem to shift from day to day so if these links don't work try looking on my portfolio page)

Including a small white border to help with mounting & framing they are 28inches long each and 47 mega pixels for the bridge shot which I printed at 300 pixels per inch and 25 mega pixels for the one of the Pier which I tried at 240 pixels per inch to see what quality was like. Not bad from a cropped 6mp original file!

I bought stock frames and re-matted them myself to fit after buying some A0 sized white mat card and one of those special angled mat cutters.

I was really pleased with the quality especialy considering that I know nothing about upsizing or printing or framing. The printed upsized photos look just like the original image on my screen with the same colour and contrast with no artifacts that I could see.


There's a photo that I've posted here of a streetlamp and steps at night. It's one of my favourite photos with my new DSLR. I've submitted it for publication in JPG magazine. You can vote for it's inclusion if you can manage to get through the registration process

.This blog has been 'nominated' for the 2008 Photoblogawards. If you like it, please take a moment and vote for it here :Photoblogawards.
Alternatively you can rate it here VFXY Photos or here CoolPhotoblogs

Like what you see here and are interested in photographic composition?.....the blog section of my website now has a complete set of 5 articles covering my personal approach to the subject: Ian Bramham Photography - Blog

For purchasing high quality archival prints of any of these photos you can send me an email by clicking here or by going to my website Ian Bramham - Fine Art Photography where prices are listed in the gallery sections under each individual photo.

Michael Rawluk from Prince George, Canada

I bet they are spectacular. Looking at photographs on screen is alright but to really appreciate them you need to print, matte, frame, and hang.

13 Feb 2008 5:26am

@Michael Rawluk: Thanks this was the first time I'd tried to do large prints off any of my photos it was a really exciting process! I've also learnt a lot about the best methods for upscaling the original files to get the size necessary for prints this large.

Putter from Belgium

Good idea, very well executed. I'm sure your work will look fantastic on a wall!

13 Feb 2008 10:24am

@Putter: Thanks be honest with you I wasn't sure what to expect when trying to print these photos so large but they came out looking identical to the original screen version which amazed me!

GJC from Kyoto, Japan

Congrats. A very good idea and you chose some of your best work, in my opinion. So when/where are these for sale for the rest of us, your fans?

13 Feb 2008 10:32am

@GJC: Thanks GJC.....what a great compliment!

If you're serious about wanting a large print like one of these please send me a personal email and I'll get back to you.

Lorraine from Gatineau, Canada

No doubt, You're a Pro...Congratulations Ian :)

13 Feb 2008 1:15pm

@Lorraine: Thanks Lorraine!......Michael's right, this type of photo looks so much more impressive as a large print rather than just being viewed on a computer screen.

Guillermina from Buenos Aires, Argentina

Congratulations, entrepreneur! So where are you exhibiting them?

13 Feb 2008 2:31pm

@Guillermina: Thanks Guillermina....these ones were done for hanging on the wall at home. We moved to a bigger house last year so have some free wall space for large frames like these.

You're right though, I am going to be exhibiting some of my photos this summer for the first time at a local arts fair in July and a photo competition in August so these enlargements were also a way of practising with the various techniques that are needed such as the best way of upscaling the image files and learning how to cut the framing mats with a bevelled edge cutter.

danthro from Suburbia, United States

nice. that one on the right is still one of my very favorites.

13 Feb 2008 6:22pm

@danthro: Thanks very much danthro!.....I'm pleased that you remembered it.

jkjond from Grange-over-Sands, United Kingdom

Good to see you printing big, your results look good. I saw your crops etc. on dpr, certainly adds even more weight to 6mp being enough.

Strange things happen when you mount photos. It is something I've got little first hand experience of, but the choice of frame and mounting obviously have a huge impact on how the image is perceived. I find the left mount far too fussy for my taste. The simpler one on the right looks more effective in this shot, though the borders are a little uncomfortable. I can see that the standard frame compromise isn't ideal for none standard crops - I'd aim for matching the top three borders then place the larger balance to the bottom. This one seems to be floating high at present, though it is hard to tell looking at these whether my approach would leave the bottom border a little thin.

14 Feb 2008 10:01am

@jkjond: Thanks for looking John.....because this was the first time I'd tried any of this, it all seemed to take ages to get things done but I've learnt a huge amount of stuff realating to uprezing, printing large and framing.

By the way, the technique touched on at DPR of going past the target size by 20% in bicubic smoother then coming back to the final print size in bicubic sharper worked better than I showed in that particular series of crops but as the results weren't visible in print even at this size I didn't want to start a discussion about Jpeg banding caused by me applying too much contrast enhancement in my original PP of this image of the bridge.

The final crop you saw after I'd reprocessed the image from scratch was miles better than the others so I'm going to try uploading one or two to Alamy now.....I managed by some fluke to get through QC on my first attempt using 4 images from my compact F31 but I haven't bothered doing anything since.

It'll be interesting to see if I can sell anything.

Momo from Montpellier, France

these really are two great images...wish i could see them live, framed like this...ashamed to admit, i haven't printed any of my images yet, well, very small sizes for a project or two but nothing i would hang...

I think you'll sell on via's odd, I registered with them over a year ago it seems and I've yet to send images for approval...maybe I should get off my keister...

16 Feb 2008 5:30am

Twelvebit from Victoria, United States

That's a good way rematting with the prepared mat on the left. Ultimately I think cutting your own mats is the way to go but having tried it with inferior mat cutting equipment, and not liked the results, I have been buying large frames with precut mats and then printing the image to fit within the precut mat. The result is like your image of the bridge on the left, but instead of the white of the mat there would just be the white of the paper . I've got an HP 8750 and it prints fantastic images, especially in B&W.

16 Feb 2008 5:40pm