FINE ART PRINT PERMANENCE
Fine art paper storage together with professional care during production and packaging process before shipping are some of the most important factors related to paper longevity or print permanence.
In simple words, how long will your print remain at its optimal quality before optical density, color balance and other print properties start to degrade (the visible outcome of print degradation may varying from fading to becoming reddish or yellowish. This happens rather soon with normal photo paper, while with fine art paper life expectancy can extend to hundreds of years depending on a number of variables, some of the most important discussed below:
FACTORS DEFINING PRINT PERMANENCE AND LONGEVITY
- medium (paper) and its composition
- ink used to print on the medium
- storage or display
The first two are handled either by me or the professional printing lab where i print my pictures (in case of larger than A2 size order). With the use of fine art paper and professional archival inks your prints will have the best quality and prospective of lasting for generations.
STORING OR DISPLAYING FINE ART PRINTS
The third factor and how it will affect your print depends on you. After receiving your fine art print(s) you need to take some easy but important decisions to ensure the highest level of print longevity.
- First of all avoid handling your prints with bare hands. It is always recommended to use cotton gloves. The receptive surface is highly absorbent and can pick up grease stains that may appear on your print or even accelerate the process of print degradation.
As a general rule always avoid:
- direct sunlight falling on your print
- high or low room temperature
- areas with high levels of humidity
from Hahnemühle website we get this related to the above detailed info: Store fine art media at temperatures from 15° to 25° (60° to 77°F) and with a relative humidity from 40% to 60%.
Also keep in mind the following:
- avoid air pollutants: do not store paint, varnish or solvent close to the printouts.
- do not rub the surface with another sheet, as the receptive layer can be damaged by abrasion (especially for matte coating)
- when storing your prints always use archival boxes and interleave each print with acid free glassine paper in case you place one over the other.
HOW TO INCREASE LIFE EXPECTANCY OF YOUR FINE ART PRINTS WHEN YOU HANG THEM ON YOUR WALL.
- do not display prints next to air conditioners or humidifiers.
- when mounting for framing, ask for 100% cotton fibre, acid-free unbuffered mount boards.
- When framing, it is highly recommended to put your prints behind glass. Even normal glass doubles the longevity of your prints (as an example, it can increase it from 70 years to 140 years.).
UV protective conservation clear glass reduces the impact of exposure to bright light sources even further. In our example, it can increase Fine Art print permanence from 140 years to 280!
To make things even better, for maximum print permanence go for the most expensive option which is museum glass. Museum glass, with its nearly invisible finish, effectively blocks up to 99% of harmful indoor and outdoor UV light rays (same as UV protective conservation clear glass) so framed prints remain clearer and brighter for longer. It also eliminates almost completely reflections (by over 85%) that can become very annoying especially with glossy or semi-glossy prints.
I hope i gave you some easy to follow tips in order to ensure your prints will remain in the best possible condition for future generations.
If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact me at email@example.com