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Framed or Unframed?

It used to be that when you bought photography you generally had two choices. “Would you like that framed, or unframed?” Unframed was generally matted and sold in a clear sleeve. The framing part was then completely up to the customer. While this still seems to be pretty much the standard, we can’t help but notice that additional presentation options are growing in popularity.

Most people have seen stretched canvas photo prints in galleries or available on online photo sites. You may be saying “yeah, yeah…canvas prints are old news by now.” And you’d be right, but they are still a great and popular option. Especially for customers who are looking for a large image. As once you have anything larger than a standard piece of mat board, framing becomes infinitely more difficult.

And what about wood, or metal?

A few years ago we started selling small photo prints adhered to fine-quality wood. Each one is made by hand, but thats not the point here. The point is people really like them. Its hard to pin down exactly what feature they respond to so well. Is it the clarity of the image, the novelty of a wooden block, the choice to hang on a wall or sit on a shelf, or is it because it needs no framing?

On the horizon is the rising popularity of metal prints. We’ve made some in-house prints on aluminum and they look pretty cool. But there are companies able to produce incredible prints on metal using a different process. (Trust us, its cool…we’ll be selling these soon.)

I guess at the end of this post we are left with curiosity. Is “framed or unframed” a question answered by practicality? Are you buying a photo in a gold frame because that’s what matches your existing art collection? Is it a choice influenced only by your taste?

. . . Or is it more philosophical, is the migration towards unframed pieces a response to modern technology implementing further change on a traditional art medium – much like the conversion to digital photography changed the landscape of expectations of what photography is?

We’d love to hear your feedback. What guides your choices when buying photography?

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Photo Block Options

Blink Gallery’s photo blocks are handmade by Newport, Rhode Island based photographer Alexander Nesbitt. The process has been perfected over the last two years, and involves a really big printer (printing awesome photos), a super cool glue machine, the finest quality baltic birch plywood, and a finish coat of lacquer applied by hand. Of course, its much more technical than that…the point is, these are little mini art objects. Its explained with a little more finesse on our photo block page.

What the block page doesn’t completely explain are the size options! As with most things, one size doesn’t fit all. So we expanded the line to give you more options. Regular, Large, Jumbo, Panoramic…all fitting together pretty well due to a carefully calculated size ratio.

photo block size options
A few block combos, showing panoramic, large and regular sized blocks
How big are photo blocks?

Regular: 5″ x 8″

Large: 8″ x 12″

Panoramic: 15.75″ x 5.25″

Jumbo : 15.75″ x 11.75″ (not pictured)

It important to note that not all of the pictures can be cropped to panoramic. Some images just don’t work that way…or they won’t look good. If you have an idea, and you don’t see it listed as an option its best just to ask. We’ll tell you if we think it will work or not!

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Best Gallery?! Thank you!

Last night we went to a fabulous party…where we got an award!

You’ve voted for us – again. We’re so ecstatic, and humbled. Blink Gallery has been chosen as the “Best Gallery” by the readers of Newport Life Magazine for the second year in a row. Whether it was 10 votes, or 10,000 we don’t care. THANK YOU. We work hard at keeping this small business alive, and recognition like this goes further than you will ever know. So pat yourselves on the back, your vote keeps a shop open in the community, artists and others working, and a legacy growing.

Our promise to you is that we will continue to bring to you the work of creators. We will produce and select the best. And we hope you’ll think of us when you want to treat yourself to something nice to adorn your walls, give to others, or just smile. We’re sending positive vibes your way. Cheers! best gallery

So again, THANK YOU!

Sincerely,

Sandy & Nichole

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Choosing The Right Size for Artwork

Deciding on the size of artwork

A size toolkit for filling the empty space above your bed, couch, mantle…

We have all experienced the times after moving to a new house, apartment or condo when we have unpacked all of our things and felt satisfied with what we have accomplished. But then we realize…the walls are bare! We endeavor to find just the right thing to hang in that space, but the task seems unreasonably difficult. What size is the right size to hang there??

At our photography studio, we have heard this question come up quite often. So we decided to help you out by creating this chart.

choosing the right artwork size for your space

You can download the PDF here – Viewing Distance chart

If it still seems complicated, try thinking the same way you would when you buy a television. How close will you be? Do you want to have to squint? If you’re very close will you be able to see the middle and edges at the same time?

Now that you’re armed with information – good luck with your search for the perfectly sized piece!

 

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How it’s made: photo and canvas prints

There seems to be a general sense of confusion around photography when its for sale. People don’t know what it is they are getting. Is it a digital image? How is it printed? Are millions of them made? What’s does that word giclée mean that people use?

Let’s try to clear up a little of the confusion for you.

Giclée is a word that was used in the 90’s to refer to high quality ink-jet prints. With the rise of digital photography, basically all fine art photos would be called giclées by that definition and therefore the term is more now more commonly used when talking about ink jet reproductions of paintings or other types of 2-D media (drawings, pastels, watercolors, etc that have been photographed or scanned and then printed).

With the exception of a few images from our archives that we sell sporadically (silver prints, chromolithographs, etc), all photos sold at Blink Gallery are prints made from digital photo files. They are signed by the photographer, and numbered if they are part of a limited edition (all images 8×10 and larger are limited edition). The images are printed, matted, and framed at photographer Alexander Nesbitt’s studio in Newport, RI. Its a small business producing high-quality images prepared at the highest standard.

You may have also seen large photos printed on canvas, and wondered how that works. Its simple – the same large format printer that prints on paper also prints on canvas (or metal, or other materials)! Canvas prints are then coated with a thin layer of laquer to make them water and fade resistant. They are still limited edition fine art prints, just prepared in a slightly different way. Our canvas prints are also made at Nesbitt’s studio, each one stretched by hand.

For more general information about what sizes of prints we make and sell please visit the INFO: Photo blocks, framing, and print sizes page.

Anything else you want explained? Leave a comment and let us know!

 

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Newport photos online

Alexander Nesbitt’s stunning collection of images from around Newport, Rhode Island are up and running on our new shop site.  We have rewritten the captions on all the Newport photos, added a few new images, and cleaned out a few old ones.  Check it out an let us know what you think!

Newport Harbor from Goat Island
Newport Harbor from Goat Island
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New Paintings!

A selection of the new work available by Tom McAleer. All shown are 16″x20″.

Last week I took a trip to Jamestown, to visit painter Tom McAleer and re-stock/re-invigorate our selection of his work at Blink. Tom never paints a place just once. He lets it become an obsession and then he goes to paint it almost daily until he feels he has captured it to his satisfaction. Our new batch of works include a current obsession, fishermen, and a former (but never tiresome) obsession, Beavertail. Its hard not to feel the movement of the water, and the punch of invigorating color when you looks at Tom’s ocean scenes. We also picked up a few small beautiful landscapes that still utilize color in a vibrant way, but have a much calmer presence.

Our selection of Tom’s paintings are priced really reasonably ($295 – $950), come on in and maybe you’ll get caught up in the vigor of the brushstroke and sensation of the ever moving ocean too!

Enjoy!

Nichole

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New Website on the Way!!

If you’ve seen our store, or have met us (Sandy and/or Nichole) you may know that we’re the type of people who love a good project. We’re problem-solvers, active creators, and diligent workers. It was brought to our attention by someone who works as a web designer that our site was terribly outdated. “Forms!? You’re still using forms?, she said.” So the time for change is upon us. Please bear with us as we learn, create, and activate this new website bit by bit. It will be worth it in the end. Our goals are to streamline our e-commerce ability, and be able to more effectively communicate to you who we are, what we sell, where we are, and what we can do.

Cheers!

Sandy and Nichole

Now shh, we’re working!