Peter Lik Backlit Print Style Explained

Many folks have been on vacation and came across one of the many Lik Galleries or even my own Lahaina Gallery and wandered inside to see photography displayed how they never have seen it before. I often get compared to and asked how to print like Peter Lik or the same style so I thought let's take a deeper dive into how the prints are created and this style of presenting photography.

Andrew Shoemaker Gallery in Lahaina, Maui

Who is Peter Lik?

Peter Lik is an Australian photographer most know for his wide panoramic nature images of iconic locations throughout the world. Although some consider him to be controversial or polarizing, he's been wildly successful and inspiring to many. “I’m the world’s most famous photographer, most sought-after photographer, most awarded photographer,” he said in a bombshell New York Times article while describing himself. It can be hard to argue with that statement when he also claims to have sold the most expensive photograph to date Phantom for a whopping $6.5 million to an anonymous Los Angeles collector. The sale reportedly included two other works Illusion for $2.4 million and Eternal Moods for $1.1 million. Although this sale is still considered controversial in the art world and photography circles, that's quite an impressive haul to say the least! The sale unseated German artist Andreas Gursky's Rhein II which had fetched $4.3 million at an auction in 2011. Peter Lik currently has 12 galleries in the USA and one in Australia. I think we can end the argument if photography is fine art at this point am I right?

  • LIK Fine Art Aspen
  • LIK Fine Art Australia
  • LIK Fine Art Caesars
  • LIK Fine Art Chicago
  • LIK Fine Art Forum
  • LIK Fine Art Key West
  • LIK Fine Art Lahaina
  • LIK Fine Art La Jolla
  • LIK Fine Art Madison Avenue
  • LIK Fine Art Mandalay
  • LIK Fine Art Miami
  • LIK Fine Art SoHo
  • LIK Fine Art Venetian
looking up at a structure at the Enryaku-ji temple in Japan with vibrant fall colors all around and a sun star peaking through right above the temple

Walking through Enryaku-ji temple, I looked up and found this scene and got the placement of the sun just right. The structure actually houses a UN peace bell and the site is over 1200 years old! Walking through places with so much history and beauty can result in you being "elightened"

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What is Peter Lik Print Style?

When you go into a gallery and see the artwork in person, there's a different connection being made than what you can experience online. To see photography printed at a very large scale can give you the feeling of actually being there. Of course in a few years, we could have some crazy virtual reality art experience so who really knows where things will go? What I'm getting at is how the art is displayed is a large part of the "style". Peter Lik's look I would describe as strong and saturated and the materials that it's printed with and the gallery environment play a big part. Dimly lit gallery, with controlled lighting will make the art appear that it's lit from behind and I get the comment quite a bit in my Lahaina Gallery, "they look like they're backlit". For many coming into the gallery, it may be the first time seeing photography displayed like this and it's an absolutely breathtaking journey. The prints are usually FujiFlex Crystal Archive paper encapsulated in acrylic known as Acrylic Facemounts. There's many different papers available but they are archival metallic photo prints and project light back at the viewer. There's a unique effect the acrylic provides as the light bounces back and forth between the photographic print and the acrylic achieving an unrivaled luminance. I offer acrylic facemounts as my premium option in my image galleries.

Honu Heaven

One of the most epic moments that I've captured and this image is super special to a lot of collectors. Really blessed to have experienced this magic

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What Is Acrylic Face Mounting?

Simply put, it's an acrylic sandwich with an archival fine art photographic print in the middle and a built in hanging system which is a metal subframe attached to the back of the artwork. That doesn't sound very complex now does it? It actually is quite a complex process and the materials used and the fine art print determine it's character so let's take a look at the anatomy below........

Acrylic Facemounts by Andrew Shoemaker

When comparing the different mediums, acrylic facemounts offer the highest image quality, best color depth, most detail, most luxurious look, and have the highest archival qualities. The acrylic layer also provides UV protection for the print and the artwork is sealed from the elements. That being said, the artwork shouldn't be exposed to any extreme environments or drastic temperature changes. My favorite acrylic to use is called TruLife acrylic. It exceeds the standard acrylic optical acrylic that most use with the following properties......

  • Reduces Reflections
  • Scratch and abrasion resistant
  • Blocks 99% of UV rays
  • Anti-Static and repels dust
  • Cleans like glass. No special cleaners are needed

Why Invest in Fine Art Photography?

Investing in art is investing in your mental well being as it literally becomes part of your surroundings. Your art can transport you to another place, calm you down, and even has been proven to heal which is why you see art is hospitals and healthcare facilities. Revamping your surroundings has never seemed so important as it is right now as I write this with covid-19 having us all in our homes more these days. The value you're getting with me and my art is more of a personal touch as I like to deal with collectors directly and there's no pushy sales tactics or schemes or made up phony stories. True value is when you feel connected to the artist and the artwork and can pick up the phone and communicate directly. That value is genuine and real and is why I feel so blessed to have so many collect my photography and so many I can call my friends.

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Flying Honu

A lone Honu (Hawaiian Green Sea Turtle) I came across in the middle of crystal clear turquoise Maui waters. So peaceful to observe as they glide so gracefully through the water.

Opposing Forces

One of the most epic scenes that I've ever witnessed, lava entering the ocean with the pacific crashing against it in opposition is just truly amazing! You literally have fire and water opposing each other here so it's a battle of two forces

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From Within

I took a chance on a sunrise from this cave at Waianapanapa and it sure ended up spectacular! Got hit with a few waves capturing this one and it was so worth it!

Collector's Edition of 50