What is an Acrylic Face Mount?
You might be wondering what our acrylic face mounted prints are, but much like one the answer is layered. To understand what it is, you need to understand the work that goes into making one. When facemounting your artwork to acrylic we stick to the philosophy that quality is everything. The quality of the image, the materials we use, and the painstaking attention to detail throughout the process all qualify in “what” an acrylic face mount print ends up being.
Acrylic Printing vs. Acrylic Face Mounting
What is an acrylic face mounted print? Let’s start with what it is not. The procedure most confused with what we do is printing directly to acrylic material. An image is directly printed onto acrylic in one layer and a second white layer is printed on top of the first layer to provide opacity. This new process is ideal for signage, but is frequently advertised as an alternative to time tested face mounting. When comparing each process, the archival capabilities of direct printing to acrylic cannot meet that of face mounting. Not only does the end product not provide the same detail, depth, and vibrancy of color, but the materials do not have as long a lifespan as our acrylic photo mounting process.
Quality Acrylic Face Mounting
Now that you know what it’s not, let’s look at what goes into your acrylic face mounted artwork. We start with a high-quality Epson inkjet print using archival inks and paper to prevent long-term fading. The front of the print is coated with a pH neutral Opti-clear adhesive to adhere the print to the acrylic. This is backed with 1/8" dibond, which is an aluminum composite meant to provide rigidity and support for the artwork. Afterward, the edges are finished to create a seamless layer. We build and attach a 3/4" wood or aluminum recessed cleat back frame to the back of the artwork to allow for simple installation on the wall.
Acrylic face mounting is ideal to turn your photos into art for any setting. Even professionals like contemporary photographer Peter Lik use a similar process for their photography. His record-breaking photo "Phantom" in addition to most of his work are great examples of acrylic face mounting. Much like ours, his acrylic process is ideal to preserve his photos.
These are the basics of the process known as acrylic face mounting. It requires careful alignment of your print with several other layers, permanent adhesive, and a lot that could go wrong. Why do we do it? Because it makes your photos and art prints look worthy of a fine art gallery.