Trying a different frame

When you are an artist who sells his work, often your profit is eliminated by the costs of framing. Now, I don’t want to do framers out of a job because they have their own massive costs, and some of them are brilliant at what they do, and in most cases are the best people to advise on frame style, border size and mount colours etc. However, every now and then I simply can’t afford to frame something so it’s time to think outside the box. Firstly, if I’m selling a scratchboard I can ask the customer to frame it themselves. The boards are varnished and sturdy so they can be posted without much fear that they’ll be damaged. The customer knows their location best and can make decisions accordingly, and they can spend as much or as little as they like on framing, but if I want to display a piece prior to sale, I need it to be framed.

Generally I’ve been having frames made for me and I glue my board to the mount in a floating style which looks very nifty and doesn’t require glass which is a huge plus because of cost and visibility. Here’s an example of that.

Total cost for a frame like this could be about $20-50 depending on size and they seem very popular in shows and with my customers.

Now with my latest piece which is quite frivolous, I decided to make a frivolous frame. For four dollars I got a small cheap canvas and painted it with spray paint straight from the can, a bit of masking tape for the ‘Piet Mondrian’ lines and the ‘d’ rings and wire, total cost around six dollars. So I’m not recommending you to go cheap, but every now and then it’s worth thinking outside the box.

This is the frivolous piece with the finished ‘frame’ underneath, it’s an emu I came across travelling near Melbourne