You Can Now Turn Prisma Snaps Into Expensive Fine Art Prints
This summer, in the heat of the Pokemon Go craze, I found my attention caught by another popular app called Prisma. Like Instagram before it, this little utility produced square images that were filtered into particular styles – although Prisma’s novelty was to use a style transfer method that made my photos reminiscent of artwork and styles famous. It was and still is fun to play with, and is regularly updated with new styles. But the one thing I hadn’t thought of while tinkering with my Prisma filters and sliders was actually printing the product.
Printing Prisma photos on canvas is now a service that the wacky printers at CanvasPop have decided to offer. Their whole business is putting people’s pictures on the canvas, and since Prisma aims to be an app for creating artwork on your phone, the combination of the two can be seen as logical. Or it would be if Prisma offered more than its meager 1080 x 1080 resolution, designed to be shared on mobile devices and the web.
Still, I had a beloved photo (processed by Prisma) of a snail from my home in Bulgaria, and was curious to see what it would look like as a physical object and gave that idea a try. It turned out that the low resolution is not really a hindrance to production beautiful canvas prints. You need to emphasize abstraction a bit in Prisma in order to achieve a look that communicates intentional pixelation/blocking, and I think my image strikes that balance well. CanvasPop says it also optimizes and enhances every image it receives to make it look its best, and since the company already offers Facebook and Instagram impressions, I think it’s well used to working with subjects less than ideals.
The quality of the final print is excellent, the canvas is nice and thick, and everything is assembled by hand and signed by its creator. I’m torn between finding it cute and endearing. In any case, it is not the company that counts, but the object which, as my colleague Thomas Ricker has just written today, is an underestimated part of what makes our memories resonate over years.
CanvasPop’s pricing isn’t exactly cheap, with my 12″ by 12″ snail print costing $35 and the most expensive 24″ by 72″ prints reaching $419 when ordered with a frame. additional. Then again, if you ever try something like this, now is the week to do so as the company has a 50% discount on Black Friday.