Westwood Photography | Television Hideaway: TV as Fine Art

Television Hideaway: TV as Fine Art

March 08, 2014  •  Leave a Comment
Television Hideaway: TV as Fine Art
 
Side by side comparisonA Change of Scenery A Change of Scenery
 
Aren't televisions great these days? They're big, colourful and just look brilliant, adding to any decor – when they're on. Of course, when they're off, it's a different matter. You have this large, black, reflective screen taking up prime wall space, the focal point of your living area. What to do?
TV on a wallBefore
Before
 
A few months ago, friends asked, "Can you do photographic artwork that would hide a TV?" They had just moved into a wonderful open planned home, with the TV on the end wall. It was the first thing you saw when you walked into the room. Hide a TV? I thought. What a great idea.
 
After
 
(note: as this is a photo of a photo, the colours are more accurately shown in the gallery- click the image above to see this)
 
I went away and did some research and discovered that this concept had been around for a while in Europe and the United States, though I couldn't find any reference to it in Australia. As the photographs I take are created with high resolution film and now digital cameras, creating a piece large enough to cover a TV would not be a problem from an image quality point of view. The piece they chose was "Boranup Forest Morning". A large image on canvas seemed to be the obvious solution as it is non-reflective and most importantly, light, allowing for a piece of art to be fitted over a television without putting too much stress on the stand or bracket. But how could this be done without the bracing bars across the back, which is a necessary part of the design to give rigidity, so that it could fit over the TV and completely hide it?
 
I approached my framer and asked for his ideas, so he sat down and designed what I think is a brilliant solution to the problem. He came up with what is effectively a double frame design, making the frame strong and rigid while at the same time maintaining a minimum of weight, eliminating the need for bracing bars. This requires that the image be larger than the screen so that it can also wrap around the double frame. Because the framed canvas image fits completely over the screen, the television is not visible even when viewed side on, completing the illusion that it is not there at all.
 
Now when you walk into their open planned living area, the first thing you see is a large (one and a half metre long by one metre high) image of the Boranup Forest in early morning sunlight. The piece is light enough and easy enough for one slightly built person (sorry Bernice*) to place over the television as often as needed. The colours and detail bring a new focus into the room. Even when viewed at close quarters, there is no loss of quality. To give you some idea, the image below is a close-up of the bottom right corner of the printed canvas. (*Not her real name)
 
Detail of Canvas Corner
 
Frequently Asked Questions:
 
1. Is the weight of a large canvas image going to be a problem for the stand or television wall mount?
 
From the research I did into common television stands and wall mounts, most are made to take ample excess over and above the weight of the television. The weight of this canvas image in the photographs above was only around 5 kg, easily accommodated by most television stands and wall mounts. However, for your own peace of mind, it is worthwhile investigating the weight rating for the stand or wall mount you have, and the weight of your current television.
 
2. How much does it cost?
 
As the canvas framing is a unique design, it has to be custom made and requires more time than the more usual design for stretched canvases. The image is also large to accommodate modern large screen televisions, as well as the double frame around the outside. This puts the price between $1000 and $2000, depending on size requirements as dictated by screen size of the television. If you are interested in placing such an order, please use the Contact page, including the size of your television, so we can give you a precise quote.
 
3. What photographs would be suitable for a large canvas image over a television?
 
As all images on this website are high resolution, any are technically well-suited for this application. So the choice comes down to personal preference. Aside from choosing something you like, think about the theme or colours in your current living space. While most people prefer the images of the great outdoors, don't overlook images of smaller subjects either. For example, a close-up image of a flower or rock pool can look spectacular when enlarged to such proportions. Because we don't normally see these subjects in such detail, they take on an abstract timeless quality.
 
4. What about the shape of the image – I notice a lot of the images are panoramas, but my television is not that long?
 
All of the photographs have ample resolution to be cropped to suit the size and shape of your television. Before proceeding, I always email an image of the cropped photograph for your appraisal.
 
5. If I changed my mind, could the canvas image be relocated to hang off a wall instead?
 
It is a simple matter to add a hanging wire to the back of the frame so it can be hung on a wall in the normal manner. You could do this yourself, or your local framer could do this for a minimal fee if preferred. This option could be useful if you relocate or update your television in the future.
 
If you have any queries or suggestions, please don't hesitate to contact me using the Contact page.
 
Richard Tonkin
Westwood Photography
 
www.westwoodphotography.com.au
 

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