What is a Rolled Canvas Print?

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What is a rolled canvas print? We explain the difference between rolled canvas and the gallery wrapped prints sold at MYPICTURE.

Rolled canvas refers to canvas prints that are sold without a wooden frame or any other mounting hardware. They’re called rolled canvas prints because the most common way to transport unmounted prints is to roll them up. So in a less formal sense, this category is used to include any print sold as a separate sheet of canvas.

The materials and print techniques are basically the same for rolled canvas prints and gallery wrapped canvas prints. So the main difference lies in whether the canvas is sold to the public with or without an internal frame.

In this article we explain why here at MYPICTURE we only sell gallery wrapped canvas prints. We lay out the reasons why we think gallery wrapped prints are the most striking – and definitely the most convenient – way to buy your canvas.

What is a Rolled Canvas Print? One canvas print rolled up and one wrapped on wooden frame.

Advantages of Rolled Canvas

There are 3 main advantages to buying rolled canvas prints:

How Gallery Wrapped Prints Differ from Rolled Canvas

Gallery wrapped canvas prints – the type which MYPICTURE specialises in and which made our name – differ from rolled canvas prints in several ways.

The basic difference is structural:

Gallery wrapped canvas prints are wrapped (or "stretched", in the industry jargon) over an internal frame. This frame is usually made from lightweight wood. Gallery wrapped prints are therefore ready to display without the need for additional framing.

By contrast, since rolled canvas prints are not ready-stretched and do not have a frame, the buyer needs to stretch and mount them on a frame before they can be displayed.

What is a Rolled Canvas Print? Rolled canvas print next to wooden frame and staple gun.

The internal frame means there’s an aesthetic difference too:

A gallery wrapped canvas print is a three-dimensional object, which adds personality and depth. The colour and detail of the printed image work in harmony with the physical presence of the wrapped frame to create a cohesive, dynamic artwork.

By contrast, if a rolled canvas print is displayed without a frame, it’s working in only two dimensions, so all the impact needs to come from the printed image alone.

What is a Rolled Canvas Print? Framed canvas print on table leaning against wall.

Another aesthetic distinction is the edges of the print:

In a gallery wrapped canvas print, the sheet of canvas is folded around the frame. So if the sheet has been printed right up to the edges, this means that the borders of the image appear on the sides of the piece, instead of the front. This creates a unique and striking visual effect with rich artistic possibilities.

By contrast, since a rolled canvas print is displayed as a flat object, the image itself is single-faceted, meaning there’s no potential to use multiple print surfaces in a creative way.

What is a Rolled Canvas Print? Two canvas prints wrapped on frames next to staple gun.

Why We Sell Gallery Wrapped Prints, Not Unstretched Canvas

Here at MYPICTURE we sell mainly to the general public rather than to art professionals or design specialists. Our buyers love the convenience of being able to hang their prints as soon as they arrive at their door. (We even offer a special canvas hanging kit to make the process even easier – you can add it to your order at checkout for a small extra cost!)

We also think gallery wrapped canvas prints just look amazing – and we put so much effort into printing your photos just right, we want them to be mounted just right too. Judging by our customer reviews, you think we’re doing a decent job!

What is a Rolled Canvas Print? Canvas print on wall showing mountain range.

And finally, framing our own canvas means we can ensure that your prints are first-class items from top to bottom. We check the print and the framing carefully, and if anything’s less than perfect, we’ll start the whole process again to get you a true premium decor feature. That gives our buyers complete peace of mind.

A Third Option: Canvas Wall Hanging

If you're looking for a unique and modern way to display your canvas prints, we sell another canvas option that could be a perfect alternative to traditional gallery wrapped or rolled canvas prints: the canvas wall hanging.

What is a Rolled Canvas Print? Two canvas prints suspended on wall showing photos of dog.

This recent addition to the MYPICTURE catalogue design consists of a sheet of printed canvas suspended between two pairs of magnetized wooden bars.

The result is somewhere in-between the two traditional canvas designs: it’s got the loose, informal feel of borderless rolled canvas, while the wooden bars bring a similar bold physicality to the composition that you get from a stretcher frame. You'll find the canvas wall hanging in our Wall Decoration category – take a look for yourself!

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