Care Instructions for Photographs

Instructions for handling and care of Fine Photographic Prints

Exhibition quality prints by Ansel Adams and the Ansel Adams Special Edition Prints by Alan Ross are made with great care. Every effort has been made to insure that they have practical archival quality and will last indefinitely unless subjected to an extraordinarily destructive environment, excessive humidity, vermin and/or poor handling and storage conditions. All prints are subjected to three fixing baths and hypo-clearing agent, and are toned in selenium. They are mounted with dry mounting tissue on the highest quality mount board.

The fine photographic print is a delicate object. The surface is easily marred, and any damage will be readily apparent. Therefore

  1. Keep the slipsheet over the print at all times when not on display.
  2. Attach nothing to the back of the print.
  3. Do not slide prints about in a stack. The weight of prints in a stack can be considerable, and minute bits if grit will cause surface abrasions or indentations.
  4. Prints should be stored in containers that are of special design. There are now many on the market. Do not store prints in ordinary wrapping paper or cardboard which is chemically impure. Avoid musty, humid areas as well as areas in contact with fumes and gases. Do not store unframed prints on edge; the mount may become curved.
  5. Never use rubber cement, scotch tape or any hygroscopic material with, or adjacent to, photographic prints; they can be extremely damaging to both print and mount.
  6. If a print is to be framed, it should have an overmat of archival material.
  7. Use Plexiglas or glass in the frame. Plexiglas has the advantage of less weight and is clearer than glass, but it does scratch easily. Do not use anti-reflection picture glass, as it visually destroys the tonal values of the image.
  8. The backing material in the frame should be high quality archival board. Ordinary cardboard is chemically impure.

Last Updated on September 22, 2020