- Metal vs Canvas Prints Comparison
- Advantages of Metal vs Canvas Prints
- Advantages of Canvas Prints vs Metal
- What Subject Matter Should Be Printed Metal vs Canvas Prints?
- Display Options of Metal vs Canvas Prints
- Other Options from Printique
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Printique, Adorama’s own high-quality printing company, makes several types of prints that you might find intriguing.
Since I use Printique myself quite regularly, I often get asked about their metal vs canvas prints, and which type of print one should choose.
Deciding on canvas prints vs metal or the other way around, metal prints vs canvas, often comes down to the type of client or the type of image involved. In order to decide on metal vs canvas prints, let’s have a look at the main differences between canvas vs metal and work our way around to the decision phase.
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Metal vs Canvas Prints Comparison
Deciding on printing on metal vs canvas prints is an easy choice in many cases. But it can also be an interesting choice at times. Some photographers like to see the issue as modern vs classic, which really makes a lot of sense.
Canvas has been used for painted portraits and landscapes for hundreds of years, and when used photographically, brings up those nostalgic feelings. Metal has been around a long time as well, but as an artform, metal is decidedly modern.
Above is a YouTube video from Printique’s own channel that briefly highlights what went into these photographers choosing metal vs canvas prints and vice versa. Here’s another video from Printique that might help you decide: Behind the Scenes: Canvas Wraps.
Canvas has a texture to it while most metal prints are completely smooth, which may be a huge factor for photographers deciding on printing on metal vs canvas prints. With that in mind, here's a brief examination of the advantages of metal vs canvas prints.
Advantages of Metal vs Canvas Prints
We’ll start with the advantages of printing on metal vs canvas prints.
Metal prints are an interesting work of art. They are so thin and need no other framing solution, unless you want one. Metal also is extremely durable, and these prints hold colors well in all sorts of display environments.
But it’s really that flat, unframed image that seems to grab a viewer’s attention almost immediately. A metal print displays the artwork in a way that virtually screams “Look at me!” Choosing to print on metal vs canvas prints is an intrinsic part of the artistic process for many photographers.
Advantages of Canvas Prints vs Metal
Now that I’ve completely sold you on metal vs canvas prints, let’s see the advantages of making canvas prints vs metal.
Photographically, it’s an artform of its own to create a sense of timelessness or even a bit of nostalgia. This can be accomplished via posing a portrait subject, the lighting configuration chosen, and adding in a color tinge during post-processing such as sepia tone or aging.
Whatever type of subject matter on your canvas print, choosing canvas prints vs metal evokes a certain old world charm. Plus, the canvas itself lends a texture to the final product, which may make the enlargement a more comfortable viewing experience under certain display setups.
What Subject Matter Should Be Printed Metal vs Canvas Prints?
Now that I’ve hopelessly muddied the waters about the option of metal vs canvas prints, let just say that both printing methods are fantastic for photography. Sometimes the decision comes down to what type of subject matter the image is.
Let’s take portraits first.
A classically posed head and shoulder capture of a person, perhaps lit with Rembrandt Lighting or some other Chiaroscuro technique, will naturally lend themselves to being printed on canvas. Classic subject, classic pose, classing lighting, classic canvas print.
However, many of those same arguments work for deciding to print on metal vs canvas prints. So, I like to think of the modern aspect of photo art. Metal is modern, contrasty colors and broad vs short lighting can make a portrait image look decidedly, well…, modern.
The same arguments work equally well for landscape images, architectural subjects, astrophotography, macro photography, still life imaging, and the list goes on. So, while we're probably going to see metal vs canvas prints as the difference between modern art and classic, there really is no button to always push for either way. Make it a print by print decision.
Display Options of Metal vs Canvas Prints
I mentioned the display options earlier, so let’s cover these now.
Both styles of printing, metal vs canvas prints, can be displayed as they come from the printer. A canvas wrap looks great mounted as is on a wall, and we’ve already seen that in metal prints.
Some other options are to add frames. A canvas wrap can be made to look both old world classic and somewhat modern 3D depth by mounting in specialty frames for canvas wraps. A metal print can virtually float up against a wall or adding a minimalist frame could set it apart from other art being displayed.
Since some metal prints have a glossy finish, they are shinier than a canvas wrap (a satin finish is also available), some display lighting choices may push you one way or the other for metal vs canvas prints. The slight texture of canvas can be viewed comfortably from any angle under many different room lighting situations.
So, that last consideration - how the final image is displayed - might be the single most deciding factor on opting for metal vs canvas prints. The bottom line is, there’s not a wrong choice of metal vs canvas prints. Both styles of enlargements will enhance your fine images.
Other Options from Printique
Besides metal vs canvas prints from Printique, you could also consider acrylic prints, wood prints, Giclee prints, collages, poster prints, and the beautiful paper prints with options of several different finishes.
Any way you look at it, metal vs canvas prints is a fun decision to make. Try out the same image in different-sized enlargements and printed with both methods, and I’m sure you’ll enjoy your images (and your clients will as well).