My Peter Lik Moment

Metal Print on Display - Austin, Texas

Metal Print on Display – Austin, Texas

Do you know Peter Lik? He may be the most financially successful fine-art photographer who ever lived. He owns around 15 high-end stores in typically rich touristy places like Honolulu, Las Vegas and New York. I’ve been to a couple of his stores and early on, when I first started serious photography, I was really impressed with his stuff.

Now that I’ve been at this photography thing for a while, and as my tastes and skill level has grown, my impression of Mr. Lik’s work as changed. But there’s no denying that he and his stores has a knack for visual presentation. With large, bold and colorful photos on display, with beautiful lighting, his prints look like they are backlit like a LCD computer monitor. It’s quite amazing.

Nowadays, what most interests me about his photographs, are not his pictures, but the process he uses to make those radiant prints. Until recently, the stuff I printed on paper, even with some high-end printers, really looked rather dull in comparison. But if you read yesterday’s review of Shiny Prints, you know my impression of what’s possible for the home has greatly changed.

I hung the 32″x48″ metal print today, which I talked about in the review. I replaced two smaller prints with this large one, in the main hallway. It’s also strategically placed so I see it whenever I walk downstairs. And even if I don’t have dedicated spot lights illuminating the print, it still looks quite good with the standard hallway halogen lighting.

What I realized is, I’ve mostly recreated what I liked about the whole Peter Lik experience. It’s not just me. My wife, who doesn’t even remember Peter Lik, commented that this new metal print looks like the photos at that gallery in Hawaii. Let’s just say she doesn’t share my enthusiasm for photography, but even she is blown away by the print from Shiny Prints.

What I realized is that I have something that’s better than anything from Peter Lik. And here’s why.

1. This landscape is from a trip with the entire family, so it brings back memories. There’s a personal connection.

2. This is a photograph that I created so it’s a point of pride.

3. I didn’t have to pay anywhere from $4,000 to $200,000 to get something from a Lik Gallery.

Now, I’m not saying that this photo completely mimics what Peter Lik sells. Typically his prints are even larger and displayed under acrylic. Often, he has some fancy wood frame, which creates a more traditional look. I admit that there are also some technical shortcomings that I have in my image, that can be improved upon. That said, my metal print looks quite nice.

The metal gives that 3D quality with a satisfying brightness and shine. No more dull paper prints. And the 32″x48″ is large enough that it fills my central vision from around two to three feet away. That’s what I think the Lik photos do, which I was able to recreate. The combination of the shine, color, subject and print size pulls the viewer in.

My wife said something interesting. She said the photograph and print are almost too good for the house. I hope that doesn’t mean we have to do a major remodel or move houses.


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