Wednesday, April 18, 2012

From Meh to Magical - Making the Framed Painting Sing!

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I had never hand-painted a professional frame before but this one begged for it, so I went ahead and did it. Initially the frame was white but it just drained the painting of all it's vitality.

This white floater frame just sucked the
life-force out of what is a very happy, vibrant and
joyful image.

So I decided that the frame needed to be painted AND that I had to prepare a 4" x 5" canvas to mount the original painting (that was done on a canvas panel) so that I could place it in a floater frame. 
A regular frame would have made it a real yawner.

The two paintings that need framing painted on canvas board. In order to be placed in their floater frames they will be adhered to 4" x 5" complementarily painted stretched canvas panels.

The cat is totally uninterested in the complexities of the project. She has total confidence I'll pull it off so why pay attention? Right? Note that I have already painted the 4" x 5" canvas at this point with matching shades of light blue and blue-greens that are in the original painting.

I prepare a palette of complimentary (or analogous if you wish) colours to paint both the canvas that the panel painting will be adhered to and the floater frame itself. I use blues and blue greens as orange just would not have worked. Golden acrylic paints are used as usual. They are the most expensive professional artist's paint out there but WELL worth it. I know it's said often, but for my paintings, I use the BEST paint, boards, canvas, etc. I can find. I want my paintings to last far longer than my lifetime!

Here I have painted the recessed interior of the floater frame a medium bright sky blue. I should mention that I sanded the frame prior to painting so that the acrylic would adhere properly.

Here is the frame fully finished with the stretched canvas painted and screwed into the back of the floater frame. The frame itself has multiple layers of paint, with the interior being painted a lighter blue-green. The darker blue underpainting gives the recessed areas more excitement. The surface and outside of the frame are a more blue shade but still retain a semblance of green, like the green/blue of a robin's egg, just slightly bluer.

And here is the final in 3/4 view, with the painting adhered to the front of the already attached canvas. 

Wallah it's done! It is much better than just a regular ole white boring frame! All in all it took about 3 hours to complete all facets of this but the result is well worth the effort. 
Tiffie, you were right!


  1. Beautiful work! SO well done, and you're is worth the extra time and effort you spent on it. :)