Framing Fine Art Washi Unryu Paper

Elevating Your Presentation

Posted: 25 Jan 2021
Authors: Chris Jewett and Jack Upchurch

If you’ve not downloaded your free copy of the comprehensive guide to fine art printing with Lightroom, get it now!

Recently, Jack Upchurch and Chris Jewett, members of the Tidewater Camera Club of Easton, Maryland, attended a Les Picker Fine Art Printing Workshop. Following the event, the men decided to try a framing project that we felt would benefit all fine art printmakers. Here is their account.

During the workshop we were introduced to a variety of fine art print papers. One of these papers was Moab’s Moenkopi Unryu, a Japanese rice paper with mulberry long strands. As stated on the Moab website:

This paper is meant to be used for specific types of images. The texture and fibers of this paper are visually apparent and it has a soft tactile feel to it. Every print will look different and you do not have control as to where the fibers will appear in your composition. It tends to work best for more ethereal, possibly dreamy subject matter where the tones and colors lie in a mid to high-key tonal range.

Unryu particularly fit the bill for one of the images Chris brought to the workshop. After printing a sample 8x10" image on Unryu, Les explained how he believed it could best be matted and framed, and left it to us to accomplish that task once they returned home.

Back home, Jack went to work on “the problem”. He owns all the necessary tools and equipment, so all he needed to do was order supplies. After some experimentation, Jack finally produced a viable procedure close to what Les had described. That procedure is outlined below.


For more information about printing in general, download Les' free eBook “The Art of Fine Art Digital Printing”. For more specific information about printing on Unryu, click here.


Since you will probably be mounting the Unryu without glazing, it’s important to protect the print from UV light and grime.

Preparing the Mat & Backing

After the lacquer has dried, it is time to start preparing the mat and backing board.

Adhering the Print

You can adhere the print to the backing board in one of two ways. One way is to use linen tape to create hinges for the print to stay on the backing board. This is known as a museum mount and is the least injurious to the print. The following is a more permanent method.

Mounting & Matting

Next comes mounting and matting the image. You’ll want to get the dramatic effect of depth in the final presentation.

... And, Finally, Framing

Hopefully, you remembered to obtain a frame, because after the mat is in place, all that is left to do is frame your print. Unryu paper is striking and an attention grabber in its own rite, so try not to detract from that with ornate frames.