HD METAL PHOTO PRINTING
Our newest offering is in house printing of your photos to metal. This is one of the most visually impressive ways to display your photos or other artwork. Metal prints have great sharpness and vivid colors that really stand out. As with all of our printing, every image is individually adjusted for optimal printing quality. Once the metal print is finished it has a hanger attached to the back which allows the print to “float” on the wall, for a piece requiring no further framing.
HOW DOES METAL PHOTO PRINTING WORK?
Metal prints are not actually made by printing your photo directly onto the metal. Instead, using a printer with specialized inks your photos are printed onto a high quality transfer paper whose job is to “hold” the ink for later use. The photo is printed on this paper in reverse so that it can next be applied to the blank metal panels. The quality of the transfer paper is very important because the quality of the print on the paper translates to the quality of the metal print when transferred.
Metal (aluminum) sheets, which have been coated with polyester, are put into a heat press with the transfer paper holding the ink placed on top of it. Lots of heat and pressure are then applied to literally turn the ink directly from a solid to a gas, which then makes your photo become part of the polyester itself. This means there’s no ink printed on the metal, so the only way to rub it off is to literally remove the polyester coating (which takes an awful lot of effort, I’ve tried).
Once the metal panels have been through the mounting press they are allowed to cool. Once cooled the ink is permanently part of the polyester coating itself. You can even spray metal prints with glass cleaner and wipe them down. A mounting block is then applied to the back of your metal print. This will allow you to hang the metal print with no additional wires or framing necessary. Your print will appear to “float” on the wall when hung.
FREQUENT METAL PRINTING QUESTIONS
How Much Do Metal Prints Cost?
See the pricing table below or on our pricing page.
How Do Metal Prints Compare To Canvas Or Paper?
In general we find that metal prints tend to bump the contrast and color saturation slightly. It isn’t enough to dramatically alter the image, it is simply enough to notice. In our studio we have an example print of the same image on metal and canvas beside one another for comparison. Some people notice the differences, some don’t.
If you have a contrasty image or a very colorful photo then most likely metal would be a great outlet for it.
Will The Ink Wipe Off?
No, the image is bonded with the surface. You can actually spray these metal prints with window cleaner and wipe them off without causing them harm.
Are Metal Prints Archival?
As always I urge you to be informed regarding the archival nature of prints, what that means and the part you play in it (a lot!). Have a look at these two posts on archival prints, you can see one here and another here.
Having said that, metal prints have been tested to outlast many photo papers and most of us, considering they are cared for as you’d care for any art.
Do You Make The Prints In House Or Send Them Out?
We do all our metal printing in house using professional equipment and materials.
Do You Print Directly To The Metal?
No, it is done by what’s called a sublimation process.
Using a high end printer the image is printed in reverse to a transfer paper whose job is to hold the ink. Then the transfer paper is put face down onto an aluminum panel which has been coated with a very thin coating of high quality polyester. This transfer paper/polyester aluminum sandwich is then put into a large heat press at 400 degrees under pressure for a little more than a minute. This process transfers the image to the aluminum panel.
How Do I Hang Metal Prints?
The finished metal print will come with a box on the back making it ready to hang. It will float off the wall about a half inch giving it a unique look.
Can I Frame Metal Prints?
Yes certainly, though we recommend not putting them behind glass so as to maintain the metal look.
METAL PHOTO PRINT PRICING