Outfitting my studio with canvas gallery wraps seemed like the best vehicle to display my work, but I never envisioned them becoming such an integral part of how we do business at Neil Boyd Photography.
Such wraps are produced by stretching canvas consisting of a photograph around the edges of a wooden frame, creating an enhanced image that pops off your wall.
While people have traditionally displayed their portraits in frames, canvas wraps complement the contemporary style of our photography. They lend themselves to younger, forward-thinking people--the core of our target audience.
Since using gallery wraps to display our photography, the occasional order for a 20x24-inch print has become the norm, with requests being made for portraits as large as 36x48 inches. In fact, my studio has seen a 40 percent increase in the sale of large prints since [adding canvases]--thus proving the photographer's adage: "Show big, sell big."
I recall a client walking into my newly finished Raleigh studio not long after it opened two years ago. She had entered with intentions of ordering ten 8x10-inch prints of portraits I shot of her children, but bought ten 20x24-inch gallery wraps instead, once she saw how stunning they looked along my studio wall. That's a considerable markup, considering I didn't have to pair the prints with frames.
Large photography lends itself to more than landscapes and skylines. Many new clients are surprised at the level of intimacy captured in larger family and wedding portraits. About 70 percent of my business consists of weddings.
Displaying canvas prints at bridal fairs sets us apart from the competition's framed prints. A large part of our success stems from a relationship we have with a world-class canvas company located right here in our backyard. Canvas on Demand wasn't the first such company I worked with, but it has been the one I continue to do business with.
Canvas on Demand offers thick gallery wraps, in which the canvas goes around a 1.5-inch-thick wooden stretcher frame. They also have lower-cost thin wraps that go around a 0.75-inch-thick wooden frame. Owners Joe Schmidt and Tom Lotrecchiano strive for superior customer service, offering a 100 percent money-back guarantee and fast shipping.
Contracting with a canvas company that offers a quick turnaround time is a tremendous benefit when working with clients that have hectic schedules. One client presented me a scenario in which her wedding was on a Sunday but she wouldn't get her gown until the preceding Wednesday. When clients book wedding photographers, particularly in the South, they typically request a bridal portrait for display at the ceremony. Canvas on Demand's quick turnaround time enabled me to take on the project and get the portrait to her in plenty of time for her big day.
So if you're looking for a way to sell more large print portraits, I'd recommend placing some gallery wraps in your studio. They tend to sell themselves. And when these captivating images wind up on display in your clients' homes, awestruck neighbors will ask them, "Who took that photo?"
Neil Boyd owns and operates Neil Boyd Photography, located in Raleigh, NC. For more on Neil and his work, go to www.neilboydphotography.com. For more information on Canvas on Demand, go to www.canvasondemand.com/pro.