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Thread: Question on borders

  1. #1

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    Question on borders

    This is another "matter of taste" kind of thing, of course, but it would be awfully nice to have some guidelines on the borders - especially for the posting online
    - How wide?
    - What color(s)?
    - Any text allowed / advised / not advised?
    - Realistic looking frames?
    - "Not so real" looking frames (like the "drop shadow" effect)?

    Opinions are appreciated, of course, but even more interesting would be to know if there is any literature or "science" about what's recommended?

    Or - is it completely "artists' choice", and if the choice is "wrong" - the artist must face the consequences?

  2. #2
    thatguyfromvienna's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Only my very personal opinion.

    -Quite narrow. It shouldn't distract from the actual image.
    -Black, white, greys.
    -I wouldn't. Maybe a tiiiiiny name. But tiny!
    -No way - that totally distracts from the actual photo.
    -TBH, the drop shadow effect and such instantly make me want to vomit.

  3. #3
    Photon Hacker's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    I agree with Alexander. The idea is that frames should be as little distracting as possible because their purpose is to avoid a more hash transition to whatever is around the image in space (In my opinion).

  4. #4
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Back in the late Stone Ages when I first got into photography (specifically darkroom work), the easels that held the paper essentially gave you a border, whether you liked it or not. If you wanted a borderless print, you hauled out the paper cutter and trimmed it off.

    I personally like borders as they do frame your work, and tend to find white the most pleasing. In a toned monochrome image, I will try to match the lightest tone in the print; a sepia toned image somehow looks very strange with a pure white border.

    As for size, the larger the print, the larger the border. You need some sense of overall balance. For an 8-1/2" x 11" (or 8" x 10") the smallest I'll go is 1/4" and sometimes 3/8". For a large 19" x 22" (this is the largest paper my printer will handle); either 1/2" or 3/4". In both cases a smaller border looks out of balance and being of questionable value because it looks like a mistake, rather than a deliberate act to frame the image.

    My borders are usually the same width all the way round, although I have on occasion made the bottom border wider if the print needs a bit more of an anchor.

    On occasion I will go larger (much larger) to frame the image. It is something I play around with in Photoshop before printing. A have a few actions that I use for this.

    I personally find printing on the border distracting, so as a rule do not do it. Again, there are exceptions to all rules and I have, on occasion, descretely put a title on the image. I will go to a very wide border when I do that.

  5. #5

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    Re: Question on borders

    I think it's important to have a boarder that isolates the image from it's surrounds. I think your existing presentations are spot-on though; I'm amazed at how many folks make no effort to present their images what-so-ever ... to me, that's like a chef in a cooking competition just scooping up the food and going "splat" on the plate.

  6. #6
    rtbaum's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    I have been thinking about border on my shots; I used to know how in photoshop, but haven't in quite a while. Any one wanna nudge an old, tired guy's brain cells of the technique necessary in CS4

  7. #7
    thatguyfromvienna's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Quote Originally Posted by rtbaum View Post
    I have been thinking about border on my shots; I used to know how in photoshop, but haven't in quite a while. Any one wanna nudge an old, tired guy's brain cells of the technique necessary in CS4
    Try these:
    http://www.panosfx.com/free-photosho...ns/border-bend
    http://www.ononesoftware.com/products/photoframe-free/

  8. #8

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    Re: Question on borders

    Randy, there are some borders in the Windows/ Actions panel of CS4. You can also go to Image/Canvas Size and choose a size and colour for around the outside of your photo. To complement this way of adding a border, you can also play around with the Stroke element (under Edit). To use Stroke (a thin to thick border), you'll need to have a copy made.

    Also, you can use Layer Style (again, a copy is needed in your layers panel or this won't work) and play around with lots of effects and blending modes.

  9. #9
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    The widths and colors of borders used on images generally depend on the size and the general colors of the image. One thing that I like to do is format the image in the final size BEFORE placing the border around it. That way the border width doesn't shrink or enlarge with the size of the image.

    However, one of the classiest borders I have ever seen is used by the outstanding landscape photographer Roman Johnson. Roman's images are a prime reason that I purchased a 12-24mm f/4 Tokina. Roman uses that lens on many of his images and they are fabulous...

    http://www.pbase.com/romansphotos/yosemite

    Most of Roman's images appear to have been shot with the Nikon D2x. Of course, EVERYONE KNOWS YOU HAVE TO USE A FULL FRAME CAMERA FOR LANDSCAPES! I guess someone should have informed Roman of that fact so he wouldn't have shot all those breathtaking images with a crop camera

  10. #10
    thatguyfromvienna's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Richard,
    those pictures are quite OK until your trained eye notices they weren't shot with a full frame camera.

  11. #11

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    Re: Question on borders

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    ...one of the classiest borders I have ever seen is used by the outstanding landscape photographer Roman Johnson. Roman's images are a prime reason that I purchased a 12-24mm f/4 Tokina. Roman uses that lens on many of his images and they are fabulous...

    http://www.pbase.com/romansphotos/yosemite
    Hi Richard,

    Those landscapes are great! And I like the borders too.
    But I can easily see how someone could qualify them as "too thick", having too much text, which could be arranged better, etc... Some people like them, others (I imagine) - not so much.

    Interesting to note, that your link points to photos made in 2005. And if you look at the "recent work" part of the gallery - there are no borders at all

    Why is that? One of the reasons could be (just a guess) is that Mr. Roman Johnston realized that the black background of the web page works as a "border" well enough... Not at all sure it's a reason...

  12. #12

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    Re: Question on borders

    FWiW, I just started using the Mogrify plugin for LR and so far, the border tools are great. I'm experimenting with sizes, but I seem to like thin black canvas border and thinner white inner border. At least for birds...

    Sean

  13. #13
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    Re: Question on borders

    I like borders too, and so far I'm happy enough with what I seem to be able to achieve with Lightroom.

    I like a black border, but I also like to differentiate between the border and the image - and Lightroom lets me do this too. Sadly I can only print like this - I still haven't found a simple way of creating a jpeg for my website...

    An example:

    Question on borders

    Detail of the border: (Black with thin white line - 1px)

    Question on borders

  14. #14
    arith's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Quote Originally Posted by vladimir View Post
    This is another "matter of taste" kind of thing, of course, but it would be awfully nice to have some guidelines on the borders - especially for the posting online
    - How wide?
    - What color(s)?
    - Any text allowed / advised / not advised?
    - Realistic looking frames?
    - "Not so real" looking frames (like the "drop shadow" effect)?

    Opinions are appreciated, of course, but even more interesting would be to know if there is any literature or "science" about what's recommended?

    Or - is it completely "artists' choice", and if the choice is "wrong" - the artist must face the consequences?
    I now mostly do borders for printing and making the size up to an 'A' size; so they are white because the ink runs if you print right up to the edge.

  15. #15

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    Re: Question on borders

    Darkside--google Mogrify plugin for Lightroom; it does exactly what you are asking for. Applies multiple borders during "publishing" process (not print.) I wished for something like this for a year and now love it.

    Sean

  16. #16
    darkslide's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Many thanks Sean, I'll check this out!

  17. #17
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    Re: Question on borders

    Are inkjet printers designed to (flawlessly) print borderless or is there some ink spillage typical as Steve described?

  18. #18
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowman View Post
    Are inkjet printers designed to (flawlessly) print borderless or is there some ink spillage typical as Steve described?
    John - there is definitely a bit of overspray on the edges. My Epson 3880 has a replaceable sponge cartridge that absorbs the overspray and when it is "full" I install a new one.

  19. #19
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: Question on borders

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    John - there is definitely a bit of overspray on the edges. My Epson 3880 has a replaceable sponge cartridge that absorbs the overspray and when it is "full" I install a new one.
    Manfred,

    Thanks for the info. I did a search for my hp 7660 and it suggested wiping off the copper tape around the edge of the plate. It helped somewhat, but a noticeable streak still appears. I have replacement cartridges and will change if it becomes unbearable. I added a border to my last print and it helped also. I can also see streaks on the back of the photo.

  20. #20

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    Re: Question on borders

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    Back in the late Stone Ages . If you wanted a borderless print, you hauled out the paper cutter and trimmed it off.

    .
    mentioned in case people are still making enlargements in the fume room I used a nail bent over after being included in a lead weight in a bottle top. Four of them, at each corner, held the paper in place and the small white marks were easy to retouch out.

    edit ..when I was fitter and rode a bike I would pick up the lead weights which cars dropped off their wheels to be melted into the jar caps ... unfortunately the march of time means I am not so fit and caps are usually plastic these days instead of useful metal
    Last edited by jcuknz; 31st December 2013 at 08:04 PM.

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