If you're new to the art of photography, then here's a little bit of advice on how to make your framed photos look fantastic: use picture frame mats.
Picture frame matting is a simple and great way to help your pictures stand out in their frame. You'll be amazed at what a big difference mats make when framing a picture.
Photo mats are quite simple, really. There are three basic things that picture frame matting does for your framed pictures. They:
A picture frame mat solves the problem between custom and ready made frames. With custom frames, there is a large selection to choose from but often the price doesn't fit into your plans. And although ready-made frames are a lot less expensive than custom frames, they only work with standard picture sizes. But when you use a photo frame mat you can mat almost any picture to fit into a standard picture frame size. Mats allow you to buy a frame that looks good with your picture rather than one that just fits.
A picture frame mat allows just about any size picture to fit into any size frame. The mat inserts into the frame (between the picture and the glass) and surrounds the picture like a secondary frame. You can have the mat cut into a special size to fit a standard frame or you can have it cut to a custom frame size.
Using picture frames and mats can also help you express your creative side by offering a host of different displays, images, words, icons, or colors. You can also use mats to display multiple photos in one frame- called a collage frame. These are great for family or vacation photos.
Mats can also help protect your important pictures. They keep the pictures from touching the glass of the picture frame, which can cause damage over time due to moisture exposure. If you are concerned about saving your pictures, make sure to use restoration techniques and products like archival mats and paper for framing which don't include chemicals that degrade your photos.
The only downside of using picture mats is the extra cost and effort of buying a picture mat.
If you want to use mats and save a little bit, you can always use precut mats- which are machine cut to common picture frame sizes. Precut picture mats are easy to find and come in a variety of shapes and colors. If your picture isn't a standard size, however, you'll be required to have a mat specially cut for it which will increase the cost a bit.
The only other concern with picture mats is when you want to use multiple mats with non-glare glass. This combination of the non-glare glass and the extra distance between the glass and the photo can actually cause the picture in the frame to appear fuzzy. This is due to the fact that non-glare glass diffuses the image. So a good rule of thumb when using mats is to always use pre-cut mats when you can and never use non-glare glass.
Picture frame mats can really make just about any photo look better. Once you see how nice picture frame mats highlight your picture, you'll understand why they have become so popular among professional photographers and picture enthusiasts.