Picture Hanging Ideas: Making the Right Arrangements
Vacation snapshots, landscapes, family portraits, art prints – the right pictures give a living space a real “home sweet home” feeling and provide a more personal atmosphere. But what’s the best way to arrange and present your pictures? In this article, we’ll introduce few different methods for displaying your photo art, explain the different impacts these methods have, and tell you what to watch for when trying them at home. There are many different options for presenting and arranging your pictures. Deciding which images are right for your wall is up to you. The general rule: anything goes, as long as you like it! Nonetheless, here are a few things you may want to keep in mind when creating your gallery wall.
For your pictures to harmonize with your furniture, proportions can be significant. An image that is too small can get lost next to a massive piece of furniture, but a picture that’s too large in comparison can also feel a bit overbearing. Walls that aren’t white are great for displaying your photos. It is exceptionally harmonious if the walls, pictures, and accessories or furnishings contain similar hues. While you can’t go wrong with pictures against a white background, sometimes art on patterned or multicolored walls won’t live up to its potential. However, putting your photo in a really striking frame or mat board can be used to remedy this.
A Good Arrangement
To have put your pictures at the center of attention where they’ll make the most possible impact, it’s a good idea to hang them at eye level. You should also consider whether the pictures will mostly be viewed when standing or when seated. As a general rule, it’s advisable to position your pictures along lines, which could mean using existing contours in the room – door frames, furniture, window ledges, etc. – or imaginary reference lines. If you want to hang a picture on the side of the room, rather than in the middle of the wall, it’s important to create a visual counterbalance with another piece of furniture or accessory. And while vertically arranged pictures will make your walls taller, the horizontally grouped images will make the room feel wider.
Our Wall Art Ideas Image Gallery:
Trend #1 The Statement Piece
One wall, one picture. A particularly great photo, or one that you are especially fond of, deserves a place of honor. Whether the picture is a large canvas wrap or a small fine art print, if it has a whole wall to itself, it automatically becomes the center of attention. You will want to create a visual balance with your furnishings and observe physical proportions.
Trend #2 Salon Style
People often think of the gallery wall, wall cluster, or salon style hang as a form of “organized chaos” in which numerous closely packed images cover almost an entire wall. The name “salon style” comes from the Parisian Salons of the 18th century. Museums such as the Hermitage in St. Petersburg would later adopt this kind of exhibition as a demonstration of overwhelming opulence. While this manner of hanging art may ignore traditional hanging lines, there are other factors that connect the art. That could be pictures that are stylistically similar, similar or identical frames or mat boards, or pictures of a similar size. A thread that ties it all together brings a certain peacefulness to the wall: an organization to the chaos.
Trend #3 Hung in a Row
Whether you line your pictures up vertically or horizontally, hanging them in a row is a classic way to arrange them. If you have pictures of varying sizes, you have two options. 1) You can align them along one of the edges, or 2) you can arrange them so that the center of the images are all centered along the same imaginary line. Our tip: before drilling any holes in the wall, lay your pictures out on the floor first.
Trend #4 On the Edge
In our example above, all of the pictures are oriented along the top edge. While the pictures themselves can be of varying length and width, the distance between the pictures should always be the same. For best results, lay the photo ensemble out on the floor before hanging it on the wall. Using painter’s tape or string can really help keep everything level. A level will also help you align them.
Trend #5 The Picture Grid
Much like a checkerboard, the photos here are arranged in a strict geometric pattern. The borders or frames of your pictures should line up along the edges and the distance between pictures should be the same in all directions. The Picture Grid works best when all of the pictures are the same size. Identical frames create a particularly strong overall effect.
Trend #6 Inside the Lines
Here, the pictures are somewhat casually hung on the wall. You don’t have to adhere to any equal distances between pictures, viewing axes, or edges. To give the image ensemble harmony here, arrange them in the confines of an imaginary geometric shape: circle, oval, rectangle, square, etc. When hanging the pictures, start with the largest one and then arrange the smaller pictures around it.
Trend #7 Symmetrical Display
We perceive symmetry as harmonic, which is why we naturally tend to arrange things symmetrically. The same goes for groups of pictures. For this type of symmetrical display, you will need at least three pictures, and two of them should be the same size. First, determine where your horizontal or vertical line of symmetry is going to be, then measure and position the pictures very carefully, as irregularities are particularly noticeable in this kind of display.
Trend #8 Picture Ledge
Whether your pictures are standing along the floor or on a wall-mounting picture ledge, leaning them against the wall means you don’t have to drill any extra holes. You can choose from all kinds of pictures to go on ledges or to lean against the wall, and they give your wall more visual structure. Additionally, you can combine pictures on a ledge with other keepsakes and small home accessories. The biggest advantage of this kind of display: pictures can be moved or rearranged at any time.
Trend #9 Different Perspectives
One subject as seen from different points of view. Create a special display by presenting several different takes on the same subject. This looks great when the pictures are hung in a row, along an edge, symmetrically, or even hung around a corner.
Trend #10 Split Image
Four pictures, one image. A work of art split into more than one piece is called a split image (other common terms are “diptych” or “triptych”, depending on how many sections the picture is split into). To make sure the big picture lives up to its potential, the individual sections should be evenly aligned with very little space between them.
Trend #11 Around the Corner
Hanging pictures around the corner is slightly out of the ordinary. It can be a nice surprise for the viewer, who doesn’t experience the full effect of the composition until looking around the corner. For the best results, make sure the pictures complement each other, and that they are not too different in size or form. This is also a great way to display different perspectives on the same subject.
Trend #12 Wall Collage
Collage is very popular in the visual art world, probably because, as famous philosopher Aristotle said: “The whole is more than the sum of its parts.” The collage is composed of numerous different images put together. For your personal work of art, you can combine whatever you like, whether that’s photo prints, postcards, or fine art prints. You can do this directly on the wall, or you can mount the pictures on a backing panel first. Framing the ensemble is also a possibility.
There’s no general formula dictating what pictures you choose to hang up or rules stating what you can combine them with. However, before you put one of your pictures on the wall, you should think about all the possibilities for exhibiting it. Lay out picture clusters on the floor or sketch the arrangements until you find the number of pictures, order and arrangement you’re happy with. When you're ready, consider transforming your pictures into acrylic photo prints, or investing your wall arrangements with the elegance of our fine canvas prints.