Why and How: Finalizing the Creation of Artistic Photographs – Part 2
Do Not Hesitate to Frame Your Works
The third phase for the preparation of a photo exhibition concerns the choice of frames. A frame is not needed to showcase a work. For an exhibition at a festival that lasts only a few days, it is not worth the expense to frame. In addition, an exhibition at a festival generates few sales, if any. Most visitors come to walk around and appreciate the photos but are not interested in buying them. Thus, there is no need to spend money on framing because the return on investment is almost zero for most exhibitors.
However, for an exhibition in a gallery, it is essential to frame your works correctly. The frame is like a case that surrounds a sparkling jewel. It highlights the artwork, increasing its appeal and value.
I attach great importance to the framing of my photographic artworks. A poorly chosen frame will not interest or attract anyone to the photo within. Thus, it will not sell.
Choosing a beautiful frame requires experience. You must consider the tones of the photograph. If you exhibit a series, all of your photos should share the same tones. Indeed, all frames should be identical, to ensure consistency.
If you do not possess skills in the area of framing, it is better to contact a professional framer, who can advise you and help you choose the best frames. For example, the more lightweight a frame, the more expensive it is. Today, wooden frames are very expensive, but they are elegant. Most photographers choose resin frames. They have less character than a wooden frame, but they are cheaper.
The Benefits of Choosing a Large Format
The finalization of a photo can occur through an exhibition, paper prints, a book, or a slide show.
I prefer paper. Because it lasts a long time, I believe that is the best medium for photographs.
For your prints, do not hesitate to think big with a size of at least 24 by 36 inches (60 by 90 centimeters). The viewers will be encouraged to look at your work from a distance. The bigger a work is in size, the more a viewer will take a step back to appreciate it in awe.
A printed work with a small size forces the viewer to get very close. In this case, he will observe the details and forget to look at the work as a whole.
Book: A Potential Option for Finalizing a Series
The creation of a book is a very interesting solution for producing a material work of photographs. Today, many online services allow you to create a book of photos with excellent paper quality. Should you choose to assemble a book, do not hesitate to place a high price on it, for its value has increased.
While a low price guarantees a choice of layout and minimal color management, a high price guarantees an adept management of colors and lights, beautiful binding, and a more personalized work.
Ideally, you should test several services to find the one that suits you best. If you are lucky to have a laboratory located near you, take the opportunity to meet with the technicians because you can better explain your expectations for your book. In general, a book of 24 photos is worth a hundred dollars (a hundred euros) if it is a quality piece.
The first step in creating a book is determining the format: square, rectangular, and the ratio between height and length. This is crucial because the format is the case of the photos in the book.
The second step is the choice of layout. In general, online publishing services offer proprietary software for creating the book. An advantage is that they are simple to use. The disadvantage is a digital book created with one service cannot be exported to be printed with a competing service. For my part, I use specialized software that allows me to generate valid PDF files that are compatible with any publisher.
The third step is choosing the title and fonts that will be used for the text. This is critical. A well-chosen font will attract many viewers because it is an easy and enjoyable read.
Finally, you must choose the cover. A good cover immediately attracts potential readers. Thus, it must be carefully chosen. /p>
Competition: A Potential Option for Finalizing a Series
Participating in a photo contest is another option for finalizing a photo or photo series.
I only consider competitions that require a print on paper and the presentation of a finalized work.
Contests with digitally formatted works may be interesting, but they do not reflect the culmination of a work. For me, a photo only exists as a completed project if it is printed.
As I described in this article, a photographer should be interested in participating in competitions. It is an enhanced way to evaluate your skills among other photographers. Personal growth is achieved through participation in a competition, where the focus is placed more on your abilities as a photographer rather than your photo’s ability to convey messages or express emotions.
Before entering a contest, you must always read the rules to properly meet the selection criteria.
You must make sure of your personal rights when submitting a proposed photograph. Over time, competitions have become a way for many communities to create a stock of photographs at a lower cost. You must preserve your work as your own.
Often you must give your permission to the organization, allowing them to use your photos for an unlimited period. The photos may then be used for advertising. In return, the competitions offer an initial price that is limited to a pubic exhibition. This process can be very profitable for the organizers but not especially for the photographer.
Nevertheless, a competition allows you to show your vision of the world and share your messages with a large number of people. Be sure you choose the right one. Research and estimate if the public will appreciate your artworks at its value. You must decide whether or not your work is suited for a specific competition.
I think that more and more competitions flatter the ego of the participating photographers without really providing the magical touch procured in writing the photographic language.
The finalization of a photographic project is a necessity for you. This is the culmination of a long process that began with the definition of your photographic consciousness, an artistic approach, and then a real project.
Realize that completing a photo project through either an exhibition or a book is a great source of satisfaction that will motivate you to advance in your field. Even though we are artists, we need recognition and motivation to keep moving forward.
Be humble, patient, constant, persevering, and persistent because the road to excellence is long.