2 Mounts & Frames


According to the Club Rules for Prints, prints need to be mounted. The mount material is not defined. Members use mount board, fibre board, foam board and so on. However best practice favours specialist mount board available from Suppliers.  I recommend that you stick to that for competitions.

The maximum size for mounts is 50×40 cm (formerly 20×16 inches), is not only a club standard size, it is also a standard picture frame size. The smaller 16×12 inch mounts are available with an A4 cutout and these are popular with members. No minimum size or shape is stated for the mount but judges often speak of the benefits of a bigger size for competitions.

The print can be of any size or shape within the mount. The mount can be of any colour and any number of borders may be printed on the print, or on the mount, or otherwise. When I talk of borders, I mean a printed line, or lines, or pattern, or colour. I do not mean the white unprinted edge around a print.

Some Club members cut mounts to size from card they already have.  Others source  sheets of 40×50 cm card or pre-cut mounts from specialist Suppliers. For beginners, mounting a print on the front of plain mount board is a really easy solution.

Clearly, the format variations are endless to meet your own imagination and expectations. Which of these choices meet the judge’s expectations is another variable to ponder. Likewise, the cost of sourcing the mounts of your choice, cutting tools, measuring tools, paper, and the amount of time it takes to produce the right mounted prints for the night, is another question.

Should you wish to frame your print after the competition, you can source a wide variety of picture frames easily and cheaply to display your creations.


I have outlined your choices for framing. Your choice determines how you then size or crop your image. These are your framing options;

  1. Attach print to front of frame – no restriction on print size, any border on the print is acceptable, including no border, which I would recommend for beginners. Simply guillotine your print and stick it to the mount board.
  2. Attached print to rear of a not yet cut mount board – exactly the same as above, but you need to measure your finished print and cut your mount board accordingly.
  3. Attach print to rear of a pre-cut frame in your mount board – arguably, this method produces the best end-result because the frame is machine cut by your supplier. However, you need to print your image to a precise size to fit your frame. By pre-cut, I mean that you board the board mount with the frame already cut in it, or that you have chosen to cut your own frame before producing your print.

I should add;

  1. you can cut your own frame cutout to your own size and shape.
  2. you can adapt your print size so that the print fits entirely behind your cutout frame. Here, you can have a border (printed or unprinted – or both) that fits inside the cutout area. LR handles the printed border option well, calling it a Stroke Border.

Worked Example uses a pre-cut frame 50x40cm with an A4 print taped to the back. My frame, across the back; 27.9×18.8 cm.

However, I have lately changed my preference to;

  • A4 cutout frame, pre-cut from a black or white 50x40cm board
  • a 1.5 AR print with stroke border with a 5mm unprinted border within the cutout.
  • the following article mentions this as option!


Please go to 3 Image Editing and Size