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Print Mounting Service?

Discussion in 'Digital Image Editing & Printing' started by Fishboy, Apr 4, 2017.

  1. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    I don't know whether this is an odd question or not...

    Imagine, if you will, a table covered in off-cuts of cardboard. There are spots of blood on some of the pieces of cardboard, a Stanley knife rests on the table with one single bead of blood upon its blade beside a pot of glue and a steel rule. In the bin next to the table is a photographic print - again, somewhat smeared with blood, that has been consigned to oblivion.

    I think that's a fair summation of my last attempt at mounting a print. Oh, and someone asked me if I was OK and I replied by giving the standard hand signal for such, with my thumb and forefinger forming a circle. Little did the onlooker know, but the two digits were actually glued together and I was having a bit of a problem separating them.

    The bottom line is that I'm thinking of entering some prints into a photographic club competition - but they need to be mounted, and my skills in this respect are poor. Very poor. Very poor indeed.

    Does anybody know of a company that (ideally) prints from digital files and then mounts those prints to club competition standards?

    My poor lacerated fingers will be grateful for any recommendations you can give!

    Cheers, Jeff
  2. MickLL

    MickLL Well-Known Member

    My local picture framing business would do the mounting (but not the printing).

    If it were me I would want to retain control of the printing.

    Fishboy likes this.
  3. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    I have a printer, but we're not seeing eye-to-eye at the moment and even when it deigns to do what I ask of it the maximum size it prints to is A4. I think I'd have to be sure that I'd be doing a fair amount of printing before investing in something that handled larger prints.

    I was trying to find out whether there was a place out there that I could send an image file to and receive a mounted print back that was ready to enter into a competition - surely I can't be the only person whose print mounting attempts invariably end up looking like a dog's breakfast?

    Cheers, Jeff
    Catriona likes this.
  4. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member


    Worth a look?
  5. Bazarchie

    Bazarchie Well-Known Member

    What form of mounting do the rules require?
  6. MickLL

    MickLL Well-Known Member

    Most people in my own club have an A4 printer and most entries in our (many) competitions are A4 - or even smaller.

    The only rules we have concern mount sizes. We are allowed either of two sizes. One is 40 by 30 (cm) and I can't remember the other.

  7. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    I'm new to all of this and I'm trying to combat my ignorance - there are rules that imply that submitting an image with the wrong sort of mount will result in me being fed to crocodiles. Here's what the mounting rules say:

    "The mount size is 50 cm x40 cm ONLY. (Note that 20x16 inch is NOT the same and will be disqualified) Maximum mount thickness must not exceed 4 mm. No tape of any description on the back of the mounts. Backing boards should be the same size as the front mount."

    I asked the Competitions Secretary for advice about prints yesterday evening and his contribution to my pool of knowledge on the subject was "I'm not doing them for you" - which isn't what I'd asked!

    I'm beginning to think that submitting digital entries only is the way to go...

    Thanks Kate - oh, and HOLY EXPENSIVE HOBBY, BATMAN! A print of roughly the size they're after for the competition, mounted on a piece of cardboard costs a minimum of £20 - the price increases even further if I want those giggly prints (or whatever they're called)...and I'd need six of them. If I put the money aside instead of entering prints, after six competitions I'll have saved enough money for a band new Canon Pixma printer, a lifetime supply of Pritt Sticks and as much cardboard as I can eat!

    Cheers, Jeff
  8. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Is there anyone local? I don't know if that would be cheaper though. Is it worth asking any of the other members? perhaps someone does this as a side job?
    Sorry - I see you have already asked for advice. Seems a bit draconian the rules! You will obey - or else!
  9. MickLL

    MickLL Well-Known Member

    OK so I was wrong !!!! That rule is the same as my own club. What it means is that the outside dimensions need to conform to the above and a hole of any size cut to accommodate the print. An A4 print in that mount looks good - and an even smaller print in the same mount can look even better.

    I'd still go for your own printing and get a local shop to cut the mount to your specification.

  10. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    I just googled "pre-cut mounts for photographs" and there are lots of companies selling standard sizes. If you want custom size then local shop or maybe the club will agree to get a communal mount-cutter. For straight cuts a rotary cutter is useful to have but. check what thicknesses it can cut - not sure if mine would do backing card.
  11. dangie

    dangie Senior Knobhead

    "The mount size is 50 cm x40 cm ONLY. (Note that 20x16 inch is NOT the same and will be disqualified) Maximum mount thickness must not exceed 4 mm. No tape of any description on the back of the mounts. Backing boards should be the same size as the front mount."

    For a photography club I think rules as strict as this are bonkers. Do they actually get any beginners entering club competitions?
    Roger Hicks and Catriona like this.
  12. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Sounds a bit like a pre-determined winning cabal to me - who set the rules.
    Roger Hicks likes this.
  13. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    These aren't the club's rules - they're the rules of the Lancashire and Cheshire Photographic Union of which the club is a member.

    I'm still new to all of this so I've no idea whether the rules are unduly draconian or otherwise. I have seen entrants from previous competitions and the entrants seem to be from a number of different clubs and the quality of entries seems to be quite high, so I don't think the rules are deliberately intended to deter people from entering.

    Cheers, Jeff
  14. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

  15. MickLL

    MickLL Well-Known Member

    There are good reasons for standardised mount size but that's not the point of my post.

    Has the OP thought of borrowing a mount cutter? Maybe Another member would help. I started that way and repaid the loan with some new blades.suited both of us.

    A Stanley knife was always going to lead to blood and tears.

  16. Fishboy

    Fishboy Well-Known Member

    Blood and tears? Well, yes, there was blood but I manfully held back the tears...although my bottom lip did have a bit of a quiver...

    Cheers, Jeff
  17. Catriona

    Catriona Well-Known Member

    Do tell. What are the good reasons?
  18. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    I believe that some judges have print boxes that are in metric sizes and do not take the old imperial sizes even though they are almost the same, My mount supplier (Cotswold mounts) offers both metric and imperial sized pre-cut mounts. ,Personally I prefer the slip in mounts as these are quick and easy to set up and also can be readily re-used
    Catriona likes this.
  19. Craig20264

    Craig20264 Well-Known Member

    Catriona likes this.
  20. MickLL

    MickLL Well-Known Member

    Just one of the good reasons is the ability to store, transport, sort and hang the prints much more easily than with variable mount sizes. If you have had to deal with several hundred prints all on different mounts (I have in connection with club exhibitions) you will know what a nightmare it is. You will also appreciate the extra risk of damage. Mount standardization makes the job inestimably easier. As the job is usually being done by volunteers that's important. A second reason (which may apply to only my club) is that our exhibition is 'framed' . The club lends frames to those who can't afford them and the club can't buy frames in multiple sizes. Yes it may introduce some restriction on "artistic expression" but IMHO it's a price worth paying.

    As an addition I saw Mr. Hicks' comment about lack of tape being "insane". I don't suppose he will see this reply because I believe he has me on ignore. For the benefit of other readers he's wrong. If he had ever had the experience of his prints being ruined (again I've suffered personally) by contact with the errant sticky tape that falls off the back of other people's prints he would know why the rule was introduced.


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