Shout Outs

Shout Out #1: Upper Canada Stretchers


Every now and then I like to acknowledge some of the people, products or services that I use in my day-to-day operation as a portrait photographer. There are many options out there today, and over the last three decades I've tried many of them but have stayed loyal to some more than others. Mainly, this is because they deliver what I need and when I need it.

I'm not going to include reviews of cameras in these blog posts, but more-so the products and services that I use for my delivered portraits. These may include printing equipment, media, ink, mats and frames, and sometimes the people that deliver them. Without them and their products, I wouldn't have a business.

These 'shout-outs' are probably of more interest to my clients rather than other photographers. Every photographer will have their own favourite vendors and like certain products or services for their own reasons. 

So you may ask, "why are these vendors and products important to my clients?" Well, because what I deliver to my clients is important to me. They appreciate that I've searched, researched, tested and retested the products that I use to produce and deliver the best possible portrait I can.

"Gallery Wrap" Stretcher Bars

Upper Canada Stretchers

Whenever I print canvases, I use stretcher bars from UCS. There are several things that I like about them. First and foremost is that they're local. Not only are they Canadian, but UCS is located in Owen Sound, Ontario, just a couple hours from my studio.

However, I don't purchase these products only because they're local. If they didn't supply the best product on the market, I wouldn't use them. But since I do consider them the best AND they're local, it's a win-win.

The quality of these products is outstanding. I've only had one occurrence of a 'fault', but it was taken care of and replacement product was shipped within 24 hours. The service from these guys defines what service should be. I haven't found (and I've stopped looking) for anything better.

Shown here are the 'keys' that make this a great product.

So what does this mean for you, my clients? Well, they say that to build anything well, you need to start with a good framework. These stretcher bars are literally the framework that I use to build my canvas products.

Expansion and contraction of the canvas can occur with humidity changes, especially in our climate. The unique 'keyed' design of these stretchers allow us to make drum-tight canvases that are easily re-tensioned should this occur. Keyed stretchers ensure that the canvas remains taut and displays properly throughout its life.

Like their motto says... "Good Art Deserves Good Bones"

Mike Guilbault