I thought I had no style because my wife said so, but I do like the look of certain things more than other ones, so I do in fact have a style (take that, Sue.) From the timeless appeal of framed and matted prints to the modern, vibrant effect of metal or acrylic, there are a number of different aesthetics that can be achieved by choosing different mediums. When I think of how to display family photos, I like a more natural style, with barn wood frames, wood prints, and canvas being some favorites.
Whatever your style happens to be, odds are that it’s reflected in the decorations and furniture throughout your house. So, when choosing how to display family photos, consider this when choosing the style of artwork. For instance, a simple black frame with a white mat works great with a minimalist aesthetic, but looks weird in a house full of color and bold accents.
Your walls don’t want to be naked. It leaves them cold, vulnerable, and embarrassed. But that doesn’t mean you should just fill every square inch of wall space with photos and knick knacks. It’s important that you choose a place to hang your artwork that makes sense, but where that is will vary from person to person.
For example, the living room might be the perfect spot for a larger statement piece that shows everyone together being a family, especially if it’s a room you all tend to spend time in together. A staircase wall can be an excellent way to display family photos in a unique pattern. And private spaces like the bedroom and kids’ rooms are good options for those that feel uncomfortable hanging photos where guests will see them. After all, you might make them feel bad that they’re not as incredibly good looking.
This is what people are talking about when they say something “ties a room together.” Before your shoot even happens, a common question families have is “what the #*&% do we wear??” So, for my clients, I like to start with asking them if there is a room or spot that they were hoping to display their family photos. Then I’ll help them go through wardrobe options, and will suggest colors based on what’s in that room.
This is a rule that I’ve personally broken, because I’m a renegade. But generally speaking, the guideline here is that the people in a photo should not be bigger than they are in real life. Sticking to this rule can resolve a lot of the fear that people have when they imagine guests coming over and them being bombarded with giant images of your kids’ faces. This is why I always try to get some wide angle family portraits during a session, as having the family small in the frame makes printing extra large a good option. The reverse is true as well for small prints, so this is the best place to put those beautiful close ups.
I’m big on quality over quantity when it comes to friends, shoes, words, and artwork. A lot of folks are hesitant to hang up framed photos because they imagine a bunch of 8×10″ frames from Homegoods (which puts their price sticker ON THE GLASS as if the back of the frame didn’t exist), which would, in fact, be tacky. By investing in heirloom-quality pieces, the materials of the artwork do justice to the beauty of the images. You can tell the difference between a cheap frame and a premium one, and same goes for canvas, metal or anything else. Plus, you’re assured that your images will never fade or fall apart for generations to come. That’s why all the artwork I offer is hand made with museum-grade materials, so you can elevate your decor rather than cheapen it.
So if you’ve been thinking about how to display family photos without looking tacky or like a self-obsessed weirdo, hopefully these tips were helpful. And once that decision has been made to use images of your favorite people to decorate your home, the fun begins. However, the thought of doing everything yourself quickly becomes overwhelming. This is why my process is centered around making family photos a part of your home, without you having to do any heavy lifting.