Caring for your photographs

Here are a few pointers I would like to share with you on how to make your photographs last longer and maintain its beauty.

Maintaining a suitable environment:

  • Photographs generally do well in environmental conditions that are comfortable for people, with relative humidity levels between 40 and 60 percent.

Displaying photographs:
  • Do not display photographs under direct sunlight.
  • It is best to exhibit photographs on dividing walls within a building rather than on perimeter walls where temperature fluctations will be greater and condensation can occur.
  • Lights that attach to the top of the frame and hang over the photograph can be dangerous. These lights cast a harsh glare, illuminate, and heat the photograph unevenly, and can fall into the artwork causing burns or tears.
  • Hanging photographs above heating and air conditioning vents or in bathrooms with tubs or showers is also inadvisable because of rapid environmental fluctuations will be harmful.
  • By deciding where and how to hang your photographs, whether it be a tight cluster or a single print above a sofa, you can then determine the size and shape of the pictures you need to buy.
  • When you have decided on the room's function, color and style, you are in a much better position to go shopping for photographs that fit in with the overall theme.

Handling procedures:
  • Photographs are best hang on walls.
  • Do not move your photographs around, unless necessary.
  • Ask for help when lifting the photograph, especially when the frame is very large. Always carry it with the image side facing you.

Arranging and hanging your photographs:
  • Modern gallery look: to create a modern art gallery feel, particularly nice in hallways, lobbies and stairwells, give each piece ample breathing room. Stand at the center of the first piece and take one swift, or two small steps along the wall. This is a good center for the next piece.
  • Above a sofa: when placing a photograph above furniture such as a sofa, you need to hang it about six to nine inches above the sofa, or at eye level.
  • Cluster arrangements: tightly group an even number of photographs together to give a statement or a focal point. This works on either large or small wall spaces, depending on the look you want.
  • In a row: by placing an odd number of photographs in a horizontal line to each other gives balance and the sense of space. This works well in hallways or stairwells.


Housekeeping Guidelines:

  • After carefully examining your photographs, dust them every four to six months.
  • Use soft, white-bristle Japanese brushes, sable (such as typical makeup brush), or badger-hair brushes for dusting. Normal feather duster may scratch your photograph.
  • Never try to clean a photograph yourself or use any liquid or commercial cleaners on the surface.