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16 Nov 2015

I'm frequently asked "What is a Gallery Wrapped Canvas?"

Canvas is now quite a popular medium for individuals to display art and photographic images. For hundreds of years canvas cloth has been one of the preferred substrates artists used to paint on -- extremely true for oils. Canvas cloth will come in a variety of surfaces, from smooth to very rough. The texture or thickness with the canvas determines the visual impact. For example, art or photos shown on smooth canvas more bear resemblance to a photograph. If the canvas is rougher in texture, the result is more like a painting.
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Wrapping a canvas around a frame in order that the image bends round the edges and disappears at the wall creates what is called a Gallery Wrap. Gallery Wraps are available in either 3/4" or 1- 1/2" thick frames. The thickness from the frame determines what lengths the image stands away from the wall, and also contributes to the stiffness with the display. A stiffer frame is less likely to warp with age, so the thicker bars are the safer choice.

The frame for the canvas is made from assembling 4 pieces of wood, called stretcher bars. Since stretcher bars are available in various lengths in 2-inch increments, Gallery Wraps can be purchased in a huge array of sizes, from 8 x 10 inches as much as 40 inches wide and 60 inches high. Gallery Wrapped Canvas can either be hung entirely on the wall without a frame, or they may be framed.

When selecting a photograph for a Gallery-Wrap, remember that several inches from the image will cover the frame towards the back. To allow for this, don't zoom and crop your image around you would for a framed photo or you may find that the top of heads end up getting chopped off. Most vendors supply tools which allow you so find out how much of the image is going to be lost at each edge.
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The canvas itself is printed using archival-quality inks inside a high-resolution ink-jet printer. The surface of the canvas is then sealed using the liquid coating or perhaps a thin transparent film. More care must be taken with a liquid coating to ensure a uniform surface and to prevent cracking in which the canvas is bent around the frame. Both sealing techniques will shield you against harmful Ultra violet rays, but in spite of this, fine canvas really should not be mounted in direct sunlight. Canvas is a very durable type of art or photographic display which will resist fading or deterioration and offer a lifetime of distortion-free viewing.

Stretching the canvas is a critical step in ensuring the quality of the finished product. With respect to the manufacturer, the canvas is either hand-stretched over the stretcher bars, or perhaps a machine is used to stretch the canvas while an installer staples the canvas to the back of the stretcher bars. The consequence of properly-stretched canvas is a firm surface with a drum-like sound if tapped together with your fingernail.

The surface texture of the canvas creates an image with more richness and depth than a standard photograph, often resembling an oil painting. A Gallery-Wrapped canvas offers an elegant and enduring personal decor addition for your home or office.


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