How to Decorate with Pictures

Expert advice from photographer Doreen Kilfeather on how to use pictures?to add individuality to your home...

Doreen Kilfeather's airy Edwardian redbrick in Dublin's Sandymount is a darkly arty, lived-in, home, where bold and colourful paintings live near documentary-style family portraits, and old posters hang out in Hang Tough frames, while Polaroids and drawn-on print-outs from Artifact Uprising ( are dotted around on dressers, walls and in crates. Large square prints in the kitchen document family time at the beach (above): ?Each one has a bit of a story behind it,? Doreen begins.

Above, a mix of iPhone pictures and professional shots have been printed, individually stamped with captions and hung with bull clips. "I love that people can connect with something ? that you can touch it. It's beautiful paper.? One of Doreen's favourite printing methods these days is ?fine-art paper on a foam board that's mounted in a frame by Frame Foundry in Stoneybatter" (


The black-and-white portraits above are by Doreen herself. She took the picture of the girl in the doorway in Brooklyn while on holidays: ?It looks like it's from another era,? she muses.

An old Christmas photo project now lives on a bathroom wall and is visible in the mirror in the image, above right. A pretty picture arrangement in one of the kids' bedrooms, far right.

Re-create this arty ambience with Doreen?s top 5 tips for hanging photographs...

1. Be ruthless with larger prints. Only pick those that really make the grade. They should be strong compositionally and have real meaning.

2. Choose your printer carefully. Printers vary hugely, and often prints are just churned out through an automatic machine. Find one who knows exactly how each print should be printed. I use Jim Butler at Inspirational Arts (


3. Remember, not every picture needs to be framed. Print a bunch of 6"x4"s on postcard paper ? they will be constantly handled and remarked upon, dog-eared and much loved.

4. Make Polaroids from your iPhone pictures with an Instant Lab from the Impossible Project ( and display them with bulldog clips.

5. Whatever you do, make a print. Don't let your pictures gather dust on some digital shelf that you'll never return to!

Original article by?Amanda Kavanagh. More from Doreen on'


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