As part of my ongoing quest to update our basement, I was looking for a way to fill up a wall in without spending a lot. A great friend suggested I check out engineer prints, and I cant believe I hadnt heard of these before! There are several floating around Pinterest and everyone seems to reference the original from Chris Loves Julia for starting this great idea! The wall I was planning to cover is across from our bar and, because of its size, it would require a fairly large piece of art or grouping of prints. I have a gallery wall on the stairway down into the basement as well as in our playroom, so I was hoping to create a different look in this area. The wall leads into our playroom this room got a make over toodetails coming soon! Because it lead into our playroom, I decided to put each child in their favorite dress up outfit. It was a fun way to capture their true natures just by having them dress up and pose!
^^This picture gets me every time!! Step 1: Take pictures I have included the original, unedited pics for illustration. I love the look of a lot of blank space in the engineering prints. I think this helps illustrate the childrens size and give more of a dramatic look. For the pictures, I lined our kids up against a well lit wall. When shooting these pictures, try to avoid anything in the background. Many will exclude the feet so you can avoid a floor or wall edges. I did just thisHarper was obviously my most difficult subject, but I managed to get a pretty cute shot of her.
Step 2: Editing I use Lightroom to edit my pictures. It takes playing around with the different filters and settings to find which look you like the best. I use the B&W Filter presets and on this project, I used the blue filter. I then increased the exposure and sharpened the images. I also decreased the shadows. Again, it takes playing around with to find the exact way you want your image to look.
Step 6: Frame Size Your wall space will determine how large you can go with your engineer prints. The larger the frame and pic, the more dramatic of an effect you will get. Most who have done this project before have recommended the large Ribba frame from Ikea. I figured, why go against the trend and try these as well I selected the dark brown frame because of the dark brown built ins on the adjacent wall. One thing to know about these framesthey do not actually have glass. It has a thick plastic sheet, so does feel a little less quality than some of your usual gallery frames. But unless you are inspecting up close, you will not notice. Plus, at $18, you cant beat the price!!
Step 5: Resizing When exporting your photo, you have the option to adjust the size settings. I changed mine to the exact size of the frame I planned to use. I then increased the pixels to 300 to ensure my photo was a clear as possible when increasing the size by so much. Export to your desired location on your computer.
Step 6: Printing This is the awesome part! Believe it or not, these pictures are not printed on photo paperthey are printed on paper (hence engineer print). Most other articles I have read on engineer prints have used Staples to print. We do not have a Staples here, but I found that both FedEx and Kinkos will print engineer size images. I used FedEx they requested I email the images to them rather than bring my saved images in on a drive. These prints cost me $30 total to print!! So after print and frame, the cost per picture was around $30. Amazing, huh?!
If you are looking to fill a large wall space or just want a unique way to hang photos of your family, I highly recommend trying engineer prints! I have gotten so many compliments on them and am already thinking about where I can hang more