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Art Exhibition Mockup

How to Prepare for an Art Exhibition

As an artist, getting accepted into an art exhibition can be super exciting but also overwhelming. You’ve put the hours into creating your artwork, but now it’s time to make it presentable. The work itself is what got you accepted into the show, but your presentation is what will help you sell.

Arranging Your Work

One of the first things to consider is how much space you have. If you know the dimensions of the wall or room you’ll be displaying in, you can make a mock-up of how you want to arrange your pieces. This way you don’t have to worry about whether or not everything will fit once you’re ready to set up. You can do this by measuring each piece and drawing a to-scale diagram of the space. Or if you want to see how it will really look, you can measure the actual size in your home or studio, arrange your pieces in that space, and take photos to reference when you’re setting up.

Art Exhibition Mockup

Photograph Before Framing

Before getting your art display-ready, you’ll want to make sure you have high quality documentation of each piece. Depending on the kind of work you’re showing, you should photograph or scan it before adding a frame with glass or any other distracting display materials. This way, if you sell any pieces during your exhibition you’ll still be able to use it in your portfolio.

Art Exhibition

Create a Price List and Business Cards

You’ll want visitors of your art exhibition to be able to easily find prices and information about your work. Before your show starts, create a list with each piece’s title, size, media, and price. This list should be displayed somewhere that is accessible to the audience. Depending on how big the show is, you might want to print multiple copies and set them in different places.

Business cards are also important to display at your show. This way if someone is interested in your work and wants to get in touch in the future, they’ll know how to contact you. People might walk into the exhibition on a whim without the funds to purchase something. However, if they have your business card it will remind them that they enjoyed your art, and they’ll be able to easily find you.

Frame Your Work and Prepare for Display

If your art is 2-D you’ll want to make sure it’s framed and ready to hang. There are tons of options for picture frames for your work. However, it’s important that the frame doesn’t out shine or distract from your art. Keep it simple so that no one is paying more attention to the frame than your art. Black or white frames are usually a safe bet. Depending on how you choose to use a frame, or if you go without one, you might need additional hardware to be able to easily hang your work.

Art Exhibition

Be Personable!

One of the best ways to make connections is to have genuine conversations with your audience. Let them know that you’re the artist and you’re open to answering questions. If they don’t have questions for you, ask them how they heard about the show or what made them stop by. If someone seems interested in your work at all, let them know you have business cards. Being likable in general will make people more engaged with your art.

Tips for creative block

Tips to Overcome Creative Block

How to Get Rid of Creative Block

Creative block happens to every artist no matter how professional they are. We all go through times where the inspiration isn’t there. It can be super discouraging to be a creative person with no ideas of what to make. As an artist, I’ve had plenty of ups and downs. There are times when my imagination goes so wild that I can’t get it all out, and other times when I can’t come up with an idea for anything. Here are some ideas of how to get past the slump of artist block and get back to being creative.

Pinterest

pinterest inspiration
Pinterest is full of inspiring photographs, art, tutorials, videos, etc. When I’m struggling to find an idea for a project, one of the first things I do is make a Pinterest board with relevant images. It’s an easy way to find and store inspiration for your work. Whether you’re looking for a drawing reference or interior design ideas, it’s a great resource to get the creative juices flowing.

Sketchbooks and Journals

creative block
No matter what kind of creative person you are, keeping a journal or sketchbook can really come in handy. During those times that you’re full of ideas, you can jot them down for later. When you’re having trouble coming up with something, just revisit those old notes and sketches for inspiration. I’m a firm believe that you should always have a notebook with you. You never know when a great idea (or even a funny comment or sentence you overheard) is going to strike. You’ll thank yourself later for having written it down.

Mix Up Your Routine

Tips for creative block
Sometimes doing the same things every day can put you in a rut. If you’re moving through the day repeating tasks on auto-pilot, your brain isn’t working to its full potential. This doesn’t mean you need to switch your whole schedule. Making even small changes like going to a new coffee shop or reading a book on your porch instead of your couch will wake up your mind. Sometimes it only takes going a little ways out of your comfort zone to ignite the spark.

Don’t Wait For Inspiration

Creativity
Waiting for the inspiration to come to you doesn’t always work. Even if you’re proactively trying to find inspiration, it might not happen for a while. That’s why it’s important to keep working on projects even when you don’t want to. Even the greatest artists can make bad art, and sometimes it’s essential to the process. The process itself can even be more important than the end product. We learn from our mistakes, so don’t be afraid to make them!

Framing Art
And once you’re out of your creative block and back to making great art, don’t forget to proudly display it in a picture frame!

Dry Mounting Art

What is Dry Mounting and Does Your Image Need It?

Does your image need dry mounting?

Dry Mounting Art    Fine Art Prints
The process of dry mounting adheres your image to foam core using a heat press. Sometimes when art is printed, the paper will have slight imperfections. The process isn’t reversible, but it will remove any bends, smileys, creases, or curls that may be in your art work.

Dry Mounting for Paper creases

The best way to determine whether your image needs to be dry mounted or not is based on the value of your piece. It is highly recommended by our team that photographs, posters, prints, and newspapers are dry mounted before framing. This is because they can be reproduced, since the dry mounting process is permanent. The paper they’re printed on can also be prone to creases or bends. Another reason to dry mount a piece is if your artwork has been stored in a tube for an extended time. Dry mounting will smooth out the curl in your artwork.

Signed Posters

If you have a signed or numbered piece, it’s best to opt out of dry mounting as it does decrease value. Foam core is not archival. And once your art has been dry mounted, it is not able to be removed from the foam core.

Dry mounting is a way to make your art smooth and flat. The materials that we use are PH balanced, so your artwork will not yellow over time. Knowing the process of dry mounting will help you determine whether or not it’s the right process for your artwork.

If you ever have questions about our process or what is best for your artwork, feel free to reach out to us! You can contact us or visit our retail store in Cincinnati, OH with your questions.

 

– Manda Hill
Frame USA Retail and Specialty Lead

Dorm Room Decorating

Dorm Room Decorating Tips for Back to School

Tips for Dorm Room Decorating

Dorm Room Decorating
When decorating your dorm room there are a few things to keep in mind. Make sure you’re having fun, get creative, and let your personality show through!

Times have changed since I graduated college ten years ago. However I recently helped my younger cousin move into her dorm at the University of Cincinnati. We decorated her walls together.

Whenever I decorate any room, I like to start by drawing a template. My cousin and I drew a little sketch of her room before we started. We positioned her bed and desk first because we were unable to use the wall space above them. Next we drew the areas that we wanted to decorate and decided what to put in these areas.

Most young adults going off to college are on a tight budget. The money they do have they’re trying to save that for food and fun activities, not room decorations. One inexpensive way to decorate your walls is with posters, either by themselves or in frames. This is what we did for my cousin. My cousin loves art, animals, and music so when we went to posterservice.com we shopped mainly in the art and music categories.

Since dorm rooms can be small, plain, and often have little to no natural light, we wanted to stick with colorful posters. An important interior design tip for decorating walls is to hang things in odd numbers, never even numbers. So on her smallest wall we chose 3 posters and hung them in a “V” shape. We called this “Marc’s Wall” because we only used posters by Marc Allante.

Chai Marc Allante Two Step Marc Allante A Portrait of Hong Kong Marc Allante
 

On the left of the wall, we hung up the poster titled “Chai” by Allante. In the middle bottom of the “V” shape, we used the poster “Two Step”, and on the right we hung “A Portrait of Hong Kong”. Some other great posters that are colorful and also very popular are Lion Rasta, Circulation, Melody of the Night and one of my favorites Let That Sh*t Go.

Pink Floyd Masse  Golden Road Grateful Dead Â
Summer Tour Grateful Dead
 

My cousin has an old soul and is a fan of classic rock music, so on Bob Marley Guitar one of her other walls we did a music theme. It was hard for us to narrow down our choices because Posterservice has such a great selection of music posters! We ended up going with Pink Floyd Masse, Grateful Dead – Golden Road, and Grateful Dead – Summer Tour in one area. We also used our black corrugated poster frame to hang The Beatles Yellow Submarine. My cousin also loves Bob Marley, so right above her bed we put a popular poster titled “Bob Marley Guitar”.

The final poster we hung in her dorm room was on her door. We decided for this spot to use one of her favorites, Pink Floyd’s “The Wall”. Once we were finished with her room, it went from looking like a prison cell to a comfortable, inviting, and fun living space!

The Wall Pink Floyd No matter what your style is, Posterservice has something for all personality types, interests, and hobbies. If you’re having a hard time deciding on a poster or poster frame, just call me – Jen Riggsby, Posterservice Manager at 513-250-4135. I would LOVE to help you out. As long as you send me a before and after picture – that is the most rewarding part!!

And if you’re in need of a frame for your new poster, Frame USA’s feature frame of the month for August 2018 is our poster frame series! You can view our selection here and use coupon code “SCHOOLRULES” for 10% off all poster frames through the end of August!

 

 

 

Barnwood Frames

DIY Projects Using Picture Frames – Tips and Ideas

DIY Projects – Tips and Ideas using Picture Frames

 

DIY Projects
Do it yourself projects are a huge trend right now. They’re a great way to bring out your creative side, manage stress, or decorate on a budget. I look at a picture frame and think the possibilities are endless. There are hundreds of styles and sizes that can be transformed into exciting DIY projects!  We’ll start small and work our way larger.

Let’s take a 4×6 frame and place a photo in it. It might seem DIY Gift Ideas obvious, but this could make a great gift for grandparents or other family members. You could also use that same frame and place a gift card inside – now there is a great gift idea! Using a picture frame instead of a greeting card is not only more exciting and unexpected, but many frames are more affordable than the average greeting card. They can also reuse the frame themselves.

Frames make for great wall decor just by adding printed craft paper or chalk board material. Check out this photo below of one of our customers who decorates the outside of our frames and sells them on Etsy! Our Decorate-It frame series is perfect for this kind of project. These unfinished frames are great for your DIY project like painting or collage.

 

DIY Projects Frames

One of my favorite DIY ideas is to add mirror glass to picture frames. Large or small, they can sit on a table or hang on a wall. This makes your frame a one of a kind wall decoration. We have frames that can be stained, painted, any custom finish that one can think of.

Barnwood Frames
Another favorite is the versatility of Frame USA’s natural Barnwood frames.  This series has a great rustic look and can be filled with any style of photo, or decorated with paint or collage. We have even turned them into serving trays that can be customized by simply adding a seasonal paper or family photo.

Last year the employees at Frame USA had the opportunity to make a project from their favorite frame. Each project was unique, creative, and awesome!
We are always adding new mouldings to our frame lines. The possibility of new ideas for creative DIY projects is endless! Get creative and send us your photos of any projects you use our frames for on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter! We love seeing how creative our customers are!

Favorite Frame Series - Decorate It

Favorite Frame Series By Dan Regenold, CEO Frame USA

Our CEO’s Favorite Frame Series

Frame USA CEO Dan Regenold

Favorite Frame Series - Gold Wow, it’s a hard choice for me to try and name my favorite frame series. But, if you put me under pressure, I will give you some personal recommendations of what I would choose to frame my favorite image.

If you are looking for a GREAT gold frame, the American Value #797 Large has always been one of my favorites. It is manufactured at a value price and will look good anywhere. This frame is also very substantial when displayed on your wall.
If you have more of a simple taste in gold, like for a smaller print, maybe for the bathroom or kitchen, I would try American Value Gold #802 Thin—you will not be unhappy with the results.

 

Favorite Frame Series - Corporate Someone told me early on  that with Framing simplicity is usually best. You cannot frame an image more simply that with our Corporate Series. I like the Corporate Narrow frames for just about anything. Corporate is the series you will find that architects choose most frequently for a business setting. It doesn’t take away at all from the artwork and instead enhances the product. A few of my favorite colors—Black, White, Canadian Walnut, Red Mahogany and Brazilian Walnut. You can’t go wrong.

To compliment the corporate frames I might try the Café Collection. The Expresso and Mocha Narrow are colors that are very popular and these choices look great in Narrow or Wide. The Black Series is a profile that will never go out of style. Next to the Corporate Series, the Black Series it is my favorite.

Favorite Frame Series - Clean Cut

 

Under real wood frames—I love the Grande Series Frame in Black or Cherry.  Grande is perfect for doing a lot of the same prints for resale or giveaway. The double finish that the Grande Series offers you will present you with the presentation vs. price you are looking for. The Clean Cut Series is remarkably good—in any color. The green, the blue, the red, the white, they all overachieve with a true “shaker” look. Also, they are at a great price point.


 

Decorate-It Series (especially 1.5 and 2” flat) for a real wood frames offers so many opportunities. Take a look at the “Stem Girls” image that we created where we have lasered the logo on this unfinished frame. It looks great!

Favorite Frame Series - Decorate It IMG_6657

We can laser on the Decorate-It frame or you can have your team decorate the frames themselves with glitter, color, markers, stick-on’s. We can create custom matting. The unfinished segment of our products offer many choices.

Rounding out my favorite series I must tell you I’ve always enjoyed the “stateliness” of our Napoleon frame. Napoleon would be perfect at the Biltmore. It is an old style which is something that never goes away.

Trying for a more contemporary look? Think about the True Depth series. The finish is Favorite Frame Series - Napoleon stunning—white or black, you will not go wrong. At a custom framing shop you would easily pay 3 to 4 times our price.

Finally, Verona Narrow is a handsome frame with a smooth rounded edge. Verona is a little upscale if you are trying for that look. The elegance of our Verona Series will turn heads.

Oh sorry, I’m out of space…I could go on and on…. If they let me write another article I’ll talk to you about our incredible Barnwood and Shadow Box frames.   Until then, happy framing!

Signature

Creative Uses of Frames

Creative Frame Uses by Frame USA Customers

We love seeing creative frame uses by our customers!

creative frame uses

Here at Frame USA, our customers are our top priority. However, they are more than just important to our business – they inspire us! Seeing our products used in such a variety of creative ways brings out the artist in all of us.

For instance, the photo above was sent to us by the owner of an Etsy shop called CreativeGlassByBecky. Becky uses frames from Frame USA to create faux stained glass artwork that she sells in her shop. We love that our American-made frames are being used to create art and help an American small business owner run their company.

creative frame uses

Above is another piece of art made with a Frame USA Wood Frame. This reverse glass painting was also made by an American Etsy shop owner whose shop is called KRAM Gifts & Crafts. Reverse glass painting consists of painting in layers on the back of a piece of glass and viewing it from the other side. It is a technique of painting that has existed since the Middle Ages.

 

10922567_827679290607306_5225431918033211832_n Custom Framing

These next photos are examples of our custom frames. Frame USA offers a wide variety of standard frame sizes, however sometimes customers have pieces they want framed that are not standard sizes.

This customer had these beautiful posters they wanted to display, but needed a custom size to fit them.

All of our standard frames can be made in custom sizes by using the “Custom Sizes” tab on our site.

The Design a Frame section of our website is also an option for designing your own custom frame.

 

creative frame uses

Our Decorate-It frame series is another popular frame that leaves room for creativity. These wood frames come unfinished so that you can decorate them yourself however you please! These photos are examples of how one customer decorated their Decorate-It frames. This series is great for painting on or using to collage onto like this artist did.

 

creative frame uses

Weddings are also an occasion where having the perfect picture frame is important. This customer used one of our frames to commemorate their big day in 2011. It’s a great way to decorate a wedding ceremony or reception, or to show off photographs from your wedding afterward. Jared and Diana spelled their last name “Thompson” in a photo collage and displayed it as a decoration.

We love seeing all of the different creative ways our customers use our frames. If you’ve purchased a frame from us, we want to see your photos! Contact us on social media – Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, or email us at [email protected]. We will gladly give you a shout out.

 

Frame USA’s Annual Chili Cook-Off

Chillie-Cook-Off

On Friday the 13th, Frame USA once again hosted it’s annual chili cook-off! This year there were three different competitors who brought their own homemade chili recipes for us all to tryout. There was chicken chili, turkey chili and a spicy beef chili that the entire company feasted on.

3-Chillies

All three chilies were delicious and attempting to select a winner tore the company apart. In addition to the chili we also had people bring in very tasty side dishes including homemade cornbread, jalapeno cornbread, black bean brownies and spinach artichoke dip among other things.

Brownie-and-Cornbread

Take a look at how the employees were enjoying the feast!

Group-1

 

Group-2

Photo Wall – A Fun Way to Revitalize a Living Space

A photo wall is a wall frame display similar to your own mini art gallery. Basically, it is a ton of different sized photos thrown on a wall with some kind of order to it. These photo walls are a popular way to display family portraits, artwork, or any type of memory you want to share with the world.

A popular place many people are designing their photo wall is around their staircases. A photo wall display easily livens up a usually boring staircase and is the perfect area to place smaller wall frames. As you walk up or down the steps you can arrange the wall frames to gradually age for a nice effect.

Photo Wall
Staircase Photo Wall

One way to spice up your photo wall is to use shelves to help display your pictures. The majority of photo walls are simply a collection of photos hung together that all have a matching theme. Using shelves is an underrated means to add a different feel to your photo wall. Also, using a ledge display can save space because you can layer your photos in order to fit more in a smaller space, something that’s not as easy when arranging them on a photo wall.

On a similar accord, monograms are a nice decorative design that can add flair to you photo walls. This is especially prevalent if you are hanging family photos as it can be a nice way to identify the people photographed as well as break up the monotony of the photos.

The newest trend in photo walls is taking full advantage of your bathroom. Similar to how photo walls can be used to liven up a staircase, these wall frames can also bring to life a bland bathroom.

Photo Wall
Bathroom Photo Wall

A mistake that some people don’t even consider when embarking on their own photo wall journey is sticking with only the standard photo size. The wall frames you chose to hang on your photo wall do not have to be uniform. In fact, using different photo sizes as opposed is a great way to make your photo wall less repetitive.

Lastly, make sure you know the proper methods of how to hang photos so as not to damage the wall or the frame and get started today!

Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones – Lion and Dragon
Item #: PSA009879

Game of Thrones is a TV show that has taken over the nation! Game of Thrones is an HBO show created by David Benioff and D.B. Weiss and is an adaptation of the A Song of Ice and Fire novels written by George R.R. Martin. The show first premiered on April 17, 2011 and its 7th season premieres this Sunday, July 16th and will conclude with its eighth and final season the following year.

Game of Thrones is set in the fictitious Seven Kingdoms of Westeros and the continent of Essos. The series is all about the struggles between the noble families and their fight to rule the kingdom and sit on top of the Iron Throne.

George R.R. Martin began writing the series A Song of Ice and Fire in 1991 and had the first book published in 1996. Amazingly, over 20 years later and Martin has only published five of the even planned novels in the series. Fans of the book have been in an uproar because finally the TV series has surpassed the book and will potentially ruin secrets that have yet to be revealed in the book.

Head on over to our sister site Poster Service and browse our selection of Game of Thrones inspired posters so you can frame and hang your fandom. We know you’ll be watching with us.

Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones S4 Tyrion Lannister
Item #: PSA009752