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Old 09-09-2005, 01:06 AM   #1
Lacey Lewis Lacey Lewis is offline
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Cohesive framing?




Hello!

There is a small possibility that I could have some of my work exhibited in the near future, so I am looking into framing them all. So far, I have a couple of things framed with simple black "gallery" style frames in wood or metal.

Should I have everything framed in a similar style if they might be shown together? Or is it OK to have a mix?

Some of my works are on regular canvas, some are on the deep 1 1/2" stretchers, at least one is on a wood panel, and some are pastels on paper. The only way I can think to make them all similar is to all have simple black frames, with either floater frames on the deep stretchers or leave the sides painted black. Well, that or spend a fortune on really deep frames for everything!

But is this acceptable? I want to show all of my work in the best light, and I know a couple would look really nice in a particular frame, but I don't want them to look a mess as a group.

Opinions, suggestions appreciated!
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Old 09-16-2005, 10:06 PM   #2
Lacey Lewis Lacey Lewis is offline
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Just adding a reply here to attract attention: Over Here!! *wave*

Chime in if you have any opinions or ideas.
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Old 09-16-2005, 11:13 PM   #3
Linda Nelson Linda Nelson is offline
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When I exhibited my work for the first time 4 years ago at an art fair, I was faced with the same problem. I decided to think of my artwork and its presentation in the same regards as a fashion designer shows his work on the catwalk - you want the buyers to to drool at what they see, even if it's not what they'll actually be buying. I was lucky enough to get a wholesale framing account, which helped offset that I was picking the most flattering frames for my work, and just living with the price I had to pay to do it.

It really paid off. I got great commissions that first show, and I know for a fact that the frames helped show off the artwork, and more importantly, helped the client envision the work in their home. I had a variety of artwork to fit multiple genres, and selected frames that could be attractive to the most common interior design styles of my target market.

If you aren't adept at picking frames or knowing interior design, buy some interior design magazines of the type of homes that your buyer ASPIRE to be in, envision which paintings look good in which interior design space in the photos, and copy that style in the frame you choose for the painting.

Good Luck!
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Old 09-16-2005, 11:26 PM   #4
Lacey Lewis Lacey Lewis is offline
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Thanks Linda!

I actually do have some interior design magazines around, though they are a few years old from when I took an interior design class. Sometimes I worry that a frame I think would look great on a painting, like gold leaf frames, will strike someone as gaudy and that maybe I should stick to simple black frames.

You've given me the courage to try different frames! Thanks so much for the reply.
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Old 09-16-2005, 11:39 PM   #5
Linda Nelson Linda Nelson is offline
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example

that frame inthe center weighs like 20 pounds!
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Old 09-16-2005, 11:45 PM   #6
Lacey Lewis Lacey Lewis is offline
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You have no idea how helpful that pic is!

If I may ask you another question: What did you do about canvases the deeper, heavy duty stretcher bars, if you used them?

Part of my problem is that the only thing I am finding online for them are the floater frames, and I'd like it if I could find a frame that covers that 1.5" on the side. I would rather have each one in its own regular frame instead, say, of 5 in floater frames and 5 in assorted other frames.
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Old 09-16-2005, 11:57 PM   #7
Linda Nelson Linda Nelson is offline
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Although I prefer to use the thinnest stretcher bar reasonable for a given size so that I can leave my framing options open, I find it really doesn't make a bit of difference if the painting is deeper than the frame (up to !/2 or so). Otherwise I have also been known to literally re-stretch a finished painting on thinner stretchers, if I felt the construction of the painting needed to be on the heaviest duty stretchers, but the frame selected is too delicate to handle the deep stretchers.

Limit how much you sacrifice your frame choices by something as technically drab (from a client's perspective) as to how thick the stretchers are. You'll have to live with this experience at the back end of a project anyway when doing a commission, so get to know your options so that you can make the conclusion of a project an enjoyable one for both you and the client.
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Old 09-17-2005, 09:06 PM   #8
Chris Saper Chris Saper is offline
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I have a somewhat different viewpoint, I guess. I look at an exhibit wall just as I look at a painting- it needs to hold together cohesively.

For me that means frames of a similar - not necessarily the same- look. When you are buying frames for exhibit, I think it makes sense to have something simple and flattering, so that if you need to change out paintings for the next exhibit, you can do so.

You'll need to be presenting first impressions to clients in a frame, so I think that simple and flattering makes sense. If you get into strongly designed or stylized frames it might be harder for someone to envision the painting in his home.

There are definitely two schools of thought on the issue, so you'll need to decide what is best for you.

For thick stretchers, you'll need to look at frames styles that incorporate a "back- up" or "extra depth." I think this is generally a good idea regardless of the stretcher, because otherwise the painting can't sit flat against the wall when it's hung.
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Old 09-19-2005, 12:59 AM   #9
Jen Reinstadler Jen Reinstadler is offline
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Chris, just out of curiosity, what basic style have you chosen to use?

Do you think one's style of painting dictates that basic frame or is it mostly personal taste?
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Old 09-19-2005, 10:08 AM   #10
Chris Saper Chris Saper is offline
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For my oil work, I use one of two types of wooden painted frames: a soft gold color, and a warm silver color; but have the same profiles. I use one or the other depending upon the dominant temperature of the painting. Most are very simple with a similar width of the frame - about 3 1/2 inches. Some have no decoration at all, some have a bit in the corners. But they are all compatible in appearance, and have a unified look when hung. (I group the golds and silvers separately - I don't like two-tone jewelry either ).

Below are some of my favorites from Abend Art. They are reasonably priced. I like the black liner for some pieces, it has a deco feel and makes a painting look formal.

For my western paintings, all have a weathered barnwood look - same frame width, some have a linen liner, some don't. Still they all look like part of a series when hung.

For my pastels, I framed them all the same. Same mat, same width of the mat, proportional to the frame, same gold satin finish metal frame. That's not to say I don't occasionally add a Baroque style in with the gold wood, or make other choices. But mainly I want a cohesive look in standard sizes so that I can change out paintings easily.
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