If you have a desire to own Luxury Fine Art Nature imagery that appears to radiate from within as though it was backlit, look no further than Acrylic glass museum floats. You'll know exactly what print media I'm speaking of If you've ever experienced one of the high-end Peter Lik franchise photography gallery's or even a Thomas Mangelson Gallery. All of those huge pieces, wonderfully illuminated, with the artwork encapsulated under crystal clear glass, revealing richly saturated colors & hyper-realistic details. The beautiful photographic artworks are simply mind-blowing!
PICTURING LUXURY ART ON YOUR WALL
A typical commercial art gallery features expansive stark white walls with a sprinkle of artworks on display. Not exactly inspiring if you ask me, and hell nobody's house looks like that anyhow. I've read articles where people describe them (commercial galleries) as impersonal or feeling as though they were in a hospital. It's been said the sterile bare white walls are a safe fall back.
There is no comparing a commercial gallery to either a Peter Lik or Thomas Mangelson photo gallery. Huge, stunning top-notch nature inspired images populate charcoal gray wall space illuminated by specialized task lights that allows the artworks to pop right out at you. Spectators slowly walk by to admire the photographic artworks, pausing at each one to allow the artwork make them feel as though they are visiting the scenery in person. During your visit, you'll subconsciously realize that you are mysteriously drawn into and connected to the artworks, as they allow mother nature to touch your soul. Face it. Who can resist not picturing any of those Luxury Fine Art Nature pieces on a wall in their own home?
Gallery pricing. For a 40x13" Limited Edition print (520 sq inches), the entry-level investment begins at around $4,000.00 for one of Lik's works. It's a significant investment to procure a Limited Edition high-end gallery style Luxury art acrylic print, even at such a modest size. However, from any of renowned world famous photographer Peter Lik's franchise galleries, it is the going rate - and they seem to be finding new homes quickly!
THE WORLD'S BEST or MOST FAMOUS PHOTOGRAPHER?
I have great respect for Lik's photographic artworks. I first became familiar with the artist back around 2010 when the Weather Channel ran a short series about him. The TV program had me hooked, being the first of its kind to provide insight into what I love to do. It was so refreshing seeing a passionate fellow photographic artist getting down and dirty in mother natures kitchen to create their art. His vocal expressions, like when the light or conditions weren't perfect, mirror my own and the various photographer friends I've worked along side of. Trust me, I've had my share of unga-bunga moments. The Weather Channel program depicted the true behind the scenes, blue-collar work ethic of a serious nature photographer.
As I became more familiar with his brand I also found numerous published articles, some are rather harsh. I found one article claiming to have exposed a scheme that he's "artificially" inflating his own market. In addition, the news media published some boisterous claims (by the photographer) that have made him a lightning rod for harsh critiques. In his own words, they claimed he's said to be the world’s "most famous photographer, the most sought-after photographer, the most awarded photographer." There's no doubt that at this point, he's definitely amongst the most famous photogs of all time - but in my personal opinion not a common household name as someone we all know as Ansel Adams is. Personally, I don't feel anyone on earth is really the worlds best photographer. Regarding the awards and being the most sought after photographer, my Google searches can't define or acknowledge any single photographer that fits the description.
LUXURY FINE ART ALTERNATIVES
There are so many unique genres' of photography, and hundreds of photographers with superb skills in each genre, so there just can't be one that's the world's best. There's a growing number of photographers within the niche' of Luxury Fine Art that are creating jaw-dropping artworks. In addition, the best high-end photographers are all using the same museum grade Acrylic prints and specialty print labs. I guess you can say there are highly qualified Peter Lik alternatives out there to choose from. As a prospective buyer, it really comes down to personal taste, and connecting with both the artwork & the photographic artist. All art is subjective, and the best advice I could offer is pick the artworks that please you the most. After all, you'll be looking at it regularly.
LUXURY NATURE PHOTOGRAPHY IS RED HOT AND WIDELY ACCEPTED
Commercial art galleries tend to cast nature photography with a negative tone. This particular article even described Peter's works as "banal" and further stated "are barely recognized by the art establishment". That I can tell you is a line of bull, his works are anything but banal. In fact, I totally dig the fact he's (Lik) bucked the elitist system establishment made up of snooty commercial art galleries, and helped blaze a trail for the entire genre' of fine art nature landscape photography. It may be more accurate if I said "fine art nature & landscape photographers barely recognize the self-appointed art establishment".
I personally feel he's raised the bar for modern market value standards at the high end niche' of Luxury Nature Photography. Perhaps, his works may have been the first to publicly be considered "Luxury" artworks. Thankfully, the tide has turned in a big way and Fine Art Nature photography is becoming ever increasingly popular with art lovers and connoisseurs alike.
While the aforementioned published article dismissed the rumored sale of a contemporary Lik photographic art that was sold in the millions of dollars, they sure have caused quite a buzz amongst many nature & landscape photographers. I tend to object to any harsh criticism aimed at him by fellow photographers, and I look at is as being jealous of his success. My point being, there is an unrealized gain that has given a boost to an entire nature loving band of rogue outdoors photographers. Large format nature photography has become widely accepted and very popular as an expression of art.
Clearly, this is an art niche' with plenty of room to grow. There are about 579 million people that reside on the North American continent. Although I've never done a survey, I'll assume there are far less than a few thousand photographers who's specialty is high resolution, large format fine art nature imagery. That's a huge number of structures with rooms that have empty wall spaces just begging to be filled.
INVESTMENT COMPARISONS BY SHOPPING ARTIST DIRECT
I took some time to look at a plethora of photographic artists websites in the same genre (nature & landscapes), just to get a good comparative analysis for traditional sizes in the same Acrylic media style. Not only did I discover a collection of truly amazing photographers and styles, (especially those 200+ select artist using Wide Range Gallery websites) I found my pricing is just about average across the entire spectrum of common sizes. This made me feel more secure knowing I'm right in the middle and don't come across as overpriced or too cheap.
Here's another comparison. The high-end gallery's I mentioned above list their 40" x 13" Limited Editions starting around $4,000.00 which comes to 520 square inches. My own artworks in the same print media (Acrylic) sized at 66" x 44" are priced slightly under 4K, but provide you with a whopping 2900 square inches of artwork. That's about five times the size.
My sincere hopes are that people will invest in my work because they love it and are connected to it. Without a doubt, a select few photographic artist have set the high water mark, but the market is in a constant state of fluctuation. If you simply cannot afford those higher gallery price points, there are alternatives out there that can match both the archival quality and artistic level of excellence of the highest profile photographers. I'd put my "best artworks" and the works of many photographers alongside any world famous photographer without hesitation.
Not long ago I had a prospective client contact me through my website who was in the market for New England themed artworks as Acrylic glass pieces. His entire family had visited a really high-end photography gallery and was blown away by the experience. They wanted a statement piece. I arranged to set up a call and we had a productive chat. Of course I asked him "what gallery was this?" Turns out it was a Lik franchise located in Vegas.
I do admit, I was pretty stoked - yet humbled - being considered as a viable alternative to Lik, who is such a prominent contemporary photographer. A once in a lifetime possibility? No pressure, right? Whew. Since I don't have a huge brick & mortar gallery and I'm not a public figure I thought to myself, is it a dream come true, or a nightmare about to unfold?
I was definitely a little nervous and could feel myself trying to "soften the landing" while expecting they'll purchase from the gallery. Luckily for myself, it wound up working out nicely and they procured (2) 45x30" acrylic prints from me at around the same cost for a single 40x13" print from the Vegas gallery. He mentioned afterwards that the gallery pricing did play a small part in the decision, but ultimately, they felt my artwork truly captured the spirit of New England and they had a much deeper connection to it. I know a ton of photographers try to run out and emulate Liks work, but truthfully I've been photographing the New England region long before Lik ever set foot here and it's now like a part of my DNA.
Since this time, I've had several similar experiences where I've been contacted by a prospective buyer who's been bouncing between multiple artist online galleries. It's always an honor and privilege to be considered, and I roll out the red carpet for each and every one. I deliver the same level of customer service and attention to details, regardless if it's a $7500.00 acrylic piece or a $275.00 photo print.
WHAT EXACTLY IS LUXURY FINE ART PHOTOGRAPHY and HIGH-END GALLERY PRINTS
Let's begin with the phrase Luxury Photography Art. You've all heard of luxury automobiles, luxury resorts, luxury luggage and luxury accessories such as a Rolex or genuine Gucci bag. These are all high-end products that come with a steeper investment point that the run-of-the-mill items. For your money you also get higher quality and in some instances there is scarcity which maintains the value. This usually includes a higher level of customer service, and most definitely quality is far more important than quantity.
Luxury Fine Art Photography is clearly taking the genre' of photographic art to a much higher level. Not only is the artwork paired with the finest quality print media available, but the attention to the details within the photographic art is dramatically important. It DOES matter what equipment you use to capture the image files as well because the artworks will be printed at very large sizes. Any mistakes the photographer made will easily be visible. Not all photographs are created equal, period. Serious photographic art collectors demand high quality, and they expect to receive a motif, not a snapshot. There's a saying good photographers say and that is "everything looks great on a camera phone screen. Now show it to me as a large print."
The photographer must first capture the image exposure as best as possible in camera by using proper techniques. Then the image files are processed and scrutinized by blowing up the image 100% to 200% to check each and every pixel. Tonal range, highlights, shadows, sharpness, noise, chromatic aberrations, there's so much work to do during post processing to assure the image can be viewed large and look magnificent.
Moving on to high-end gallery style prints, the crème'-de-la-crème print media are Acrylic glass prints. Well known for having an extraordinary - almost 3D depth, along with a luminous "back-lit" glow. The print media "style" has gained some recognition due to their high visibility in Lik's franchise art galleries. I've personally been invited for a "darkroom" viewing experience by a sales associate while in Vegas. The lighting in these rooms are expertly used to show off the acrylic face-mounted artworks' ability to trap ambient light and make it appear as though it's being backlit. It's an amazing experience that separates a Luxury Fine Art Photography gallery apart from a commercial gallery.
Acrylic prints feature the artwork (print) encapsulated between acrylic glass and a DiBond substrate
The very best acrylic print specialist (print masters) use photo papers including the likes of FujiFlex, LexJet Metallic-Pearl, and Lumachrome. These papers were specially developed for acrylic glass face-mounting, which further enhance the qualities of this unmatched print media.
I've heard it said many times over about the acrylic print media style attributing to Peter Lik. The facts are that's just not true. I should mention all fairness, this presentation, or "print media style" are definitely not exclusive to any artists. What may be more accurate is saying the general public has been exposed to the acrylic prints by way of his high profile art galleries. I learned that fact directly from the master printers I use for my acrylic pieces. Acrylic glass face-mounted prints have been around a while, and have only improved upon their legendary status as the pinnacle of fine art print media. Many photographic artists allow you to procure artworks directly, without the gallery markup that specialize in high-end large-format acrylic prints, great value, and provide jaw-dropping nature scenes.
PROCURE ARTWORKS YOU LOVE - FOLLOW YOUR HEART
In closing, I feel the most important decision anyone can make if you're investing in gorgeous fine art nature photography prints is to procure the artworks you love and connect with the most. Don't get hung up with collectability, or the scarcity of some 1970's 1 of 9 print! If its something you WANT to view every day, you'll be so much happier for it. As a benefit you'll also enjoy all the reactions from friends and family. When you're ready to view some stunning fine art imagery - competitively priced - and backed by a quality guarantee, I invite you to check out my Galleries.
Also please note that any mention by name of various art galleries or artist are strictly for reference. I am not affiliated with or work for any of them. I have no association with any gallery or artist mentioned.