Caring for Your Print

Suggestions for Displaying Your Fine Art Print

Your Mike MacDonald fine art print, made from long-lasting materials, should last for decades with the right care. Increase the life and enjoyment of your photographic print by following the suggestions here. Many of these guidelines have been taken from the book entitled The Permanence and Care of Color Photographs by Henry Wilhelm of Wilhelm Research.


The print has been packaged to minimize damage and direct contact with the photographic print. However, at some point, it will need to be removed from its packaging. Use only soft cotton gloves to touch the print to prevent fingerprints and harmful oils from damaging the print. When handling your print, take hold of it with both hands from diagonally opposing corners. Damage to the print by anyone, including the framer, is not covered under the warranty. Your print may have been rolled up so that it could be delivered to you. However, this is only a temporary measure. Do not keep your print rolled up for long periods of time. Try to have it framed soon after you receive it. If you need to store it for a long period of time, place it on a flat horizontal surface, preferably in a baked enamel metal cabinet, covered on both sides by interleaving paper.


Acids and other contaminants can shorten the life of your print and cause fading or other damage. Therefore, it is essential to use the correct framing materials and techniques. You should always use materials that are acid-free and proven to be archival. As for the question of whether to dry mount your print to a board or suspend your print in the frame with hinges or corners, it’s up to you. Mounting is an accepted means of displaying fine art photographs, which we recommend especially for prints larger than 16×20″. When the print gets really big, hinged and corner mounted prints tend to warp from temperature and humidity, and sometimes break loose and fall. A dry mounted print, however, will look beautiful for years to come. Have the framer use only archival adhesives and mounting boards. As far as glazing (glass) is concerned, you may be able to extend the life of our digital paper prints by using UV glass.

Because canvas prints are not intended for display under glass, our newest canvas prints use solvent inks made for outdoor signs. They are more resistant to fading than prints made from pigment inks, and they provide greater more protection from the elements, including spills.


The very best way to illuminate a Mike MacDonald print is through the use of 4700K Solux bulbs. These bulbs very closely emulate the natural light spectrum and will reveal the full color in the print that the artist intended. GE Reveal bulbs should never be used as the colors can be bizarre. If you wish, you may display our prints using tungsten lighting, ideally with 75-watt (75R30/FL) or 150-watt (150R/FL) internal reflector flood lamps with a dimmer switch to adjust the intensity. Quartz halogen and fluorescent lamps are NOT recommended unless a UV filter, such as Plexiglas UF 3, is placed over the fixtures. In all cases, the amount of illumination should be approximately 450 lux or less. To extend the life of a print on display, keep the room as dark as possible when not in use and keep the print out of direct sunlight. Don’t hang your print in areas that experience wide temperature variations, high heat (attics), or high humidity (damp basements). Wide temperature variations can cause the framing materials to warp. The use of air conditioners, especially humidity-control units, are recommended.