If you’ve been reading PhotographyTalk for a while, then you know we have been doing a metal print review article every couple of weeks. For instance, I did a Costco Metal Print Review a while back and, spoiler, Costco metal prints are not my favorite thing about Costco.
I’ve obviously learned a lot about what you do and don’t want in a metal print and thought I’d compile a list about all of the attributes you need to watch out for the next time you purchase a metal print.
A Grainy Photo
One of the most frustrating things of receiving a bad metal print is when the printing process actually introduces noise into your photo.
This happened with the Costco print that I purchased. Instead of having a crisp, vibrant image, I received a metal print that was incredibly grainy.
I couldn’t see this added noise in every portion of my image, but in the brighter colors it was incredibly obvious. As a perfectionist, once I saw this grain I couldn’t unsee it.
It’s hard to see the grain in the images of the print throughout this article, but trust me - it’s there.
Another frustrating aspect of a bad metal print is when it is mishandled by your metal print company.
Once again, I received a metal print with scuff marks on it from Costco. These weren’t incredibly obvious. It definitely wasn’t anything that I couldn’t have accidentally done myself through mishandling the metal print over the years, but if you’re purchasing an expensive metal print then you should receive a metal print in excellent condition.
When you first unbox your metal print, make sure to check the corners for scuff marks, as this is where they are most likely to occur.
Poor Quality Materials
Hopefully this is a quality to a bad metal print that you can avoid if you do a little research into the company you’re working with before actually doing so.
My Costco print was made out of metal that wasn’t flimsy, but it also definitely wasn’t sturdy.
But the metal isn’t the only poor quality material you need to watch out for when purchasing a metal print. You should also pay close attention to the hanging brackets and the frame on the back of your print.
Bad quality hanging brackets are annoying to use at best and could spell disaster for your print at worst.
This is definitely another pet peeve of mine when it comes to purchasing a bad metal print. If my original photo has plenty of vibrant colors, then I’ve probably chosen to print it on metal because a good metal print will enhance this vibrancy.
But, a bad metal print will cause these colors to look muddy. This is the easiest bad quality to spot in a metal print.
If you’re looking to read about one of the best metal prints I’ve ever purchased, you can do so in my Artbeat Studios Metal Print Review.