I’ve always had a soft spot for it when it comes to framing. You can bring out the best in your artwork by framing it. However, the improper framing might make it appear drab.
Since so many of my clients ask me for advice on framing their prints properly, I decided to write an article on the subject. I’ve opted to break this into a three-part series since framing is difficult. This first article will cover all you need to know about deciding on the correct frame and mat sizes for your artwork. Style and where to buy nice frames will be covered in subsequent articles in this series. You should be able to make well-informed selections about framing artwork, in this case, prints, after reading as much information as possible and seeing several examples.
All the various sizes you’ll need to think about are important, so make sure you’re familiar. It’s my goal to make framing as simple as possible for you since this is the part that most people find perplexing. To demonstrate, I’ll show you an 8.5×11 print of my Horse Portrait that is available for purchase in my store.
Next, you’ll need to decide whether or not you want to use a mat to protect your print from dust and scratches. However, I also feel that a mat isn’t necessary and that it may look great without one. Whether or not you use a mat will determine whether or not you may use the same size frame for two distinct print sizes. An illustration of what I mean may be seen in the example. Even though it is a smaller print, the equine on the left makes good use of a mat to enlarge the overall frame. There are no mats on the right horse, which is an even bigger print. It truly is a matter of taste and the personal choice whether you favor one over the other.
Again, this boils down to a matter of personal taste. Both are stunning. The bigger option may be the better choice for those who like white space and wish to cover their whole wall.
When choosing a focal length, how much “framing” you’re willing to see in your photo is an important consideration. Thicker frames will make up a larger portion of the artwork than if you choose a more subtle or compact design. What you need to know about frame sizes is as follows:
It’s important to note that the frame’s real size is different from the window’s (glass). For an 11×14 print without a mat, an 11×14 frame is acceptable. It may be ideal for an 8×10 or 8.5×11 print with a mat.
Dimensions of the actual frame, measured from one end to the other. Using an 11×14 frame with a 1.5″ wooden profile, the frame’s measurements would be 14×17 rather than 11×14. To put it another way, the more frame (wood, metal, or plastic) you see, the greater the outer frame size is to the frame size. This is something to keep in mind when determining how much wall space you’ll need, but it has little bearing on the actual framing procedure.
When it comes to framing artwork, this is the most difficult part of the whole process. To have enjoyment, you must first understand this. In the next chapters of this series, I’ll explore style, color, and my personal preferences when purchasing frames.