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If you own even a small point-and-shoot camera, these days the resolution is pretty impressive and you can print out your best photos to hang on the wall. I have gradually gotten sucked into photography, now owning the best cameras, so I have been turning my apartment into a photo gallery. I will share with you what I have learned.
First, do not print your photos on laser or inkjet printers. The result will be unsuitable for framing. You need to print them on actually photographic paper, just like they used in the old days before digital cameras. The resolution of the silver particles (as opposed to dots from a printer) is what you need for framing. Also, the paper prints will last for decades without fading.
The place that I ended up using to make my prints was Duggal on 23rd Street. Ask for manager Joe Smith. Be sure to inspect the prints before you take them home.
Now, for the framing, this is where you can really get screwed. You do not want wood frames. You want metal frames, and nothing should cost more than $50 or so. I started with some frames form Amazon.com but I have found that Bed Bath & Beyond has some well designed frames.
To properly hang the frames, you need a level. Draw a pencil line that is level then pound some nails into the wall. It is simple.
For the best camera, I use Sony because the video and color are best. For the lens, you want only a 35-mm prime lens for most indications. You don’t need the zoom. And, for the love of god, do not use your smartphone as your primary camera.
You also need a good post-production software, such as Photoshop. All photos have to be cropped or white balance corrected.
So, for $100, you can make the print and buy the frame, and have a nice piece of art in your apartment. Before you know it, you will have a photo gallery.