Friday 29 March 2019

Encapsulating & Mounting a Panoramic Photograph

A panoramic photograph was recently donated to us that features an impressive group shot of people standing in front of St. Patrick's Church, Toronto, during the 3rd German Catholic Convention of the Province of Ontario in 1937. Upon receiving the photograph, it was evident that it had been rolled up for quite some time due to its strong curl. In an effort to flatten the photograph while minimizing the risk of cracking, the photograph was placed in our humidification chamber and flattened. For more information and instructions on how to humidify and flatten an item, check out our previous blog post on the topic
After the process was complete, this is what I was left with:

While I was happy with the results, I was reminded that paper fibres have the ability to remember how they have been treated in the past. Therefore, I wasn't confident that this guy wouldn't attempt to curl himself back up again.

To ensure that the print remain flat, I decided to encapsulate it and mount it. Here's how I did it!

First, the supplies and tools you'll need:

A tape measure, archival-safe double sided tape, box cutter

Mylar sheet, foam core board

Mylar acts to keep the print flat as well as provide support. It also protects against fingerprints and its transparency allows the print to be viewed while in its enclosure. I chose a more sturdy foam core board to mount the print since I wanted to ensure that it would not curl again. If this is not a concern, you can opt for any kind of archival board.

First, you want to measure the panoramic photograph.

Next, you want to cut two identical pieces of Mylar that are large enough to cover the entire print with 5-8cm of extra Mylar on all sides.

I recommend taking this opportunity to clean any dust/debris from the Mylar sheets using any regular microfibre cleaning cloth:

Next, apply the double sided tape to one piece of Mylar. I recommend only applying tape on the long edges, that way the print is secured but you're still able to slide it in and out of the enclosure.

Once you put the second piece of Mylar on top of the first, you can slide the print into the sleeve you've created. Since it was a challenge to line up both pieces of Mylar perfectly, I ended up trimming the edges to clean it up.

After this, you can put double sided tape on the back of the encapsulated print along the two long edges and stick it to your mounting board.

Next, trim the excess mounting board from the print leaving as much space as you prefer. I decided to trim it so it aligned with the edge of the Mylar.

You've encapsulated and mounted a panoramic photograph! Feel free to label it and store it as you see fit. Since the photograph is secure and safe in its encapsulation, it can go directly on a shelf. If you encapsulate more prints, these can be stacked on top of each other with a protective board placed on the very top. Alternatively, an encapsulated and mounted print can be placed in secondary housing such as an archival box.

For more information on caring for panoramic photographs, check out this Kathleen A. Kinakin's Thesis on the topic.

No comments:

Post a Comment