Take only pictures, leave only footprints

Dear Generic Frame Manufacturers…….

Richard Charpentier Notes from Rich, Photography 11 Comments

Full spread which would yield an 8x12". Pretty, eh?


No, seriously, you are. We really need to talk before I run down Whiskey Row barking mad in my boxer shorts and nothing else! Nobody needs to see that as I’m pretty pasty this winter……..

Digital has been around for a little while now. Well, digital photography that is. And interestingly enough, digital print sizes are pretty well known now. Well, they’re known by everybody but you!

Did you know that a digital shot does not translate to an 8×10″ print?  Really, it doesn’t.  In the digital world, without cropping an image, we’re working with an 8×12″ print.  Actually, I’ll give you a list of sizes for your reference:

  • 4×6″
  • 8×12″
  • 10×15″
  • 12×18″
  • 16×24″
  • 20×30″
  • 24×36″

Cropped for an 8x10". Yeah, I guess it is better and I should crop more!

We won’t go any further than that.  I don’t want to overwhelm you.  I mean, in a decade of digital photography you’ve totally failed to recognize the new market place you exist in, and you keep making frames that make digital photographers crop the tar out of their images.  Maybe you know better, maybe we really should crop our images, maybe we’re excessive with what we show.  And you know it, so you’re helping us to get a handle on scenes that should shed some pixels.

Comments 11

  1. Post

    I am so glad I’m not alone Dave! I think we should investigate further. I’ve got a feeling that this runs deeper than just keeping mat cutters in business. Where is agent Mulder when you need him?

    I print for several local portrait photographers. And they always need 8×10 so they can get a generic frame. And I always show them how horrible the crop will be. The tears well up in their eyes as they say, “But I don’t want to pay for a custom frame…..”

    It’s a sad state of affairs!

  2. Far from being alone – the bane of any photographers existence…we tend to want to shoot wider by instinct now because we know we’ll lose some edge detail when we go to print in standard frames…what to do, what do to, woe is us! 🙂

    Kidding on that last part Rich! 🙂

  3. Post
  4. Rich,

    Oddly enough, that’s been my solution too (and, given the price of custom framing, they often work out cheaper than a framed paper print). Last exhibition I had canvases in, however, the judge told me that she didn’t like photography unless it was printed on paper, matted on white and framed in narrow black metal. I guess you can’t please everyone.
    .-= Dave Wilson´s last blog ..Silicon Labs Building, Austin, Texas =-.

  5. Post

    Sometimes I just don’t know about “judges” Dave. Years ago I submitted an amazing image to a wildlife photography contest and got an interesting response.

    I took a photo of a Loon only a few feet from my kayak. This loon swam right up to me. One judge’s response…..

    I don’t know why you did a monochrome photo and left the bird with “red eye” in it.

    Ummm….Not monochrome. Loons are black and white. And they have red eyes.

    You just can’t please everyone, so be sure to at least enjoy it yourself! 😀

  6. Good post Richard! This has been a torn on my side for years.
    I found two sources that have pre-cut mats and frames in 1.5 aspect ratio (native aspect ratio of aspc and 35mm):

    – Light Impressions
    – Frame Destination

    I use these for smaller prints, 11″x17″ and 13″x19″ – anything bigger, usually needs to go to the custom shop.
    .-= Adolfo Isassi´s last blog ..Laptop Monitor Calibration… =-.

  7. Hi Richard, That is exactly why I founded Frame Destination, Inc. We carry all the sizes you mentioned as frame size for unmated and also as mat opening sizes for matted framing. We have over 60 frame sizes and over 80 mat sizes.
    Cheers, Mark

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  9. This has actually confused me for a long time. Back in my film days we where taught the rule of thirds and the golden ratio, but when I would print my shots my photo paper came in 5×7, 8×10, 11×14 etc.
    .-= Josh´s last blog ..Finally Some Snow =-.

  10. As Dave said.. Hear hear! It’s like the old hot dog and bun thing… When buying hot dogs, they used to come 10 in a pack and the buns were always 8 in a pack. It seems that industry has learned, so hopefully this industry will!
    .-= Evan Gearing´s last blog ..Public Of Tex =-.

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