How to protect framed prints from humidity : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Can anybody help? I am living in a place with extremely high humidity. Normally people do not use air conditioning as it cools down at night. The problem that I have is that about 6 months after framing and displaying my photography, the print surface and mount board start to suffer the ill effects of humidity. They seem to develop dark spots that look like mold or mil dew. The prints are archivally processed and I use only 100% rag boards. Once the process starts it is impossible to save them. Has anybody come across a solution to this problem?? Incidentially, the prints are also toned in selenium.

-- Bob Harrison (, December 30, 1999


Over the last year or so there have been a couple of good articles in Photo Techniques magazine on RC print permanence March/April 98 and May/June 98. The article seemed to indicate that the paper manufacturers have not been as completely forthcoming as they should be regarding this issue. Your problems sound very similiar to what I read in the articles. They mentioned toning as well Agfa Sistan to extend print life. Check out the articles if you can Good luck

-- Thomas R. Young (, December 31, 1999.

I believe you have three options:

Assuming you're using a frame with glass, seal the frame _airtight_ after putting a little dessicant in the bottom.

Don't use glass; allow full air circulation.

Use an air conditioner. Aside from comfort, air conditioning will also help prevent fungus growth on your lenses, bags etc.

-- John Hicks (, December 31, 1999.

What type of prints are you mounting, matting and framing? RC or fibre? What type of frames are you using? Wood, composites or metal? What thickness matboard are you using for both mounting & matting? Is the board Bainbridge Artcare board or another brand & type? What color are the spots on the prints? Brown, silver looking or a definate mold or mildew? The frame composition can have an effect on your prints, as can the mounting materials and/or the matting materials. How you put them together, as well as the use of a back dustcover can have an effect also. We need more specifics as to your situation before coming up with solid information that might be of help.

-- Dan Smith (, January 01, 2000.

Use a dehumidifier in area where prints hang or pack back of frame with packages of dehumidifying crystals. If not practical, you will probably have to get a dry mount press and dry mount all your prints. Not 100% and there are questions about longevity of dry mounting, but it will definitely help.

-- John Laragh (, January 04, 2000.

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