Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Matting and framing
Insist on the best archival materials
for all your valuable art.

For my watercolor portrait clients:

I offer optional matting and framing services to my portrait clients. All mats are the best archival rag mats available, and backing is either rag-covered foamboard or rag backing. I offer regular rag mats or
http://nowhitepaint.blogspot.com/ deluxe "suede" mats. The artwork is mounted onto the backing board using acid-free linen tape hinges. This process allows for the slight seasonal expansion or contraction of the paper. The cost for matting and framing will vary depending on the size of the artwork and the type of mat chosen.
You will love the simplicity with which I generally mat and frame my art. I don't do fancy
corners, I don't do fancy inlays, and I don't do fancy cutouts. In my opinion, the matting and the framing should complement the work of art rather than compete for the viewer's attention.

I normally use regular glass on framed portraits which will be picked up. I do recommend that the regular glasshttp://nowhitepaint.blogspot.com/ eventually be replaced with conservation glass, especially if you will be hanging it in a relatively bright area of your home. A good framing shop should be able to do this for you.
For portrait paintings that are shipped, I never include glass because of the possibility of breakage in transit.

If you are interested in having me mat and/or frame your watercolor, I will be happy to make color recommendations when the piece is nearly finished. I cut my own mats here in my studio, and so I am able to offer these options at a lower cost to my portrait clients than most professional framers can.
The optional frames I offer to my pet portrait clients are satin-finish anodized aluminum frames.

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Janet Wissmann
Commissioned Portraits

For those who purchase prints and original paintings:
More about archival matting and backing materials

When you buy a matted limited-edition print or an original from me, you will receive the very best quality materials. I use 100% cotton rag archival materials when matting and backing all my original watercolor paintings and my limited-edition prints. I use these materials so that the works will be preserved well into the future. In the framing and matting industry, you really do get what you pay for...be sure to ask for the best.
Paper-based materials,which are made from wood, contain lignin and acid that eventually will leach into the artwork and cause yellowing, brittleness, and fading. This is why old newspapers and cheap paperback books turn yellow and brittle: they are made with paper pulp, which is made from wood, which is full of acid.

http://brighteyescatprints.blogspot.com/Prints and watercolors do need matting. The matting not only enhances the appearance of the art, but it also provides a space between the artwork and the glass. This air space lets the artwork "breathe" and helps keep it in good condition.

Where to display your framed art: 
Never hang your artwork where the sun can shine on it. The sun not only causes fading, but it also can cause condensation to form on the inside of the glass. This condensation can damage the mat and the artwork.

Conservation Glass:
Watercolors and prints need to be framed with some sort of glass on top. The photo below shows how a rust-colored mat became extremely faded when it was displayed under florescent lights and regular glass. If you plan on hanging
your artwork in a
brightly-lit location or under florescent lights, ask your framer to use conservation glass. Conservation glass filters out most of the ultraviolet light that causes fading. I recently began recommending conservation glass for all my original watercolors. Conservation glass is not the same as non-glare glass. I do not recommend non-glare glass because it causes the sharpness and clarity and beauty of watercolor to be reduced. If weight or breakage will be an issue, then you might choose to use UV plexiglass which is available through various mail order companies. ....

Anodized Aluminum Frames:
My Bright Eyes cat prints are available framed and matted with a real feather. These frames are the highest-quality anodized aluminum satin-finish frames. Their simplicity is what makes them most attractive for my original watercolour paintings and portrait commissions as well.
Bright Eyes cat prints are glazed with regular glass, and because they are relatively small items, they can be shipped with the glass intact.

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Janet L. Wissmann, Watercolorist - Soldiers Grove, Wisconsin