You may or may not recall from some time ago that I display a few photos at Sue's hairdresser's. Although that's my primary purpose — just to show them — they are also for sale. While not many people go to a hair salon to purchase photos, I do sell prints time to time.
I also change the display periodically. From December on into the beginning of March, I had displayed winter scenes, but it being time for a change, I decided to display flower photos for the next few months.
With 5 photos already framed and matted, I had wall space for one more, and I had a 18x12 frame on hand, which I wanted to use. But there was a problem. My sheets are 19x13. Now one could just trim the paper down if the printed image were 18x12 because there would be a definite edge to cut along.
But I didn't want to do that. I like to leave a border between the image and the frame, like a mat even though it is just a white border.
So then, how could I print, let's say something like a 15x10 image on a 19x13 sheet and then accurately trim a half inch off on all sides to keep the image centered correctly?
The solution was to make a faux mat as it were. I could make the mat exactly 18x12, which would give great lines for accurate trimming. I even applied a canvas finish to the mat to make it look a bit more genuine.
Here is the result. Although I actually framed this image for hanging, rather that take a picture of the picture, this frame is as fake as the mat — just done in Photoshop.
I was pleased enough with the outcome that I purchased two more 18x12 frames and experimented with more faux mats. But how to do the mats; I mean what colour? One tries to pick up a complementary colour from the image, but what colour?
So, here is a trillium matted with two different colours. People that I ask seem to favour the pink mat over the green by a 2-1 ratio. But I see a problem. First, I will show you the two versions and let you form you own opinions before I reveal what I perceive.
Note: if you click on the first image, it will pop up on a new screen, and you will eliminate distractions. From there you can click on the next one.
I like the pink as a colour, and agree with one observer who said that it gives more life to the photo. But in the end I think I must choose green, and maybe you see why.
When you view a photo, your eye is drawn to the brightest part, and when I look at the pink photo, I actually find it difficult to focus on the flower. But when I look at the green version, my eye goes right to the trillium without being pulled away.
Here is another attempt at faux matting with lady slipper blooms. I am left with the same visual result: my eye seems to focus better on the image with the duller mat, even though, once again, I prefer the brighter colour on its own.
What sayest thou?
Edit: I have since redone matted the lady slipper photo like the green trillium photo: same green with an identical small white trim.