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Thread: Framing Advice

  1. #1
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    Framing Advice

    As I mentioned in an earlier thread I will be displaying my B&W photographs in the fine arts department gallery of my old college sometime in October/November. There will be 19 prints in total and at approx $25 or more per frame it will cost me $500. Money better spent elsewhere especially since I will probably not need nearly that many frames again. I'm looking for simple black frames which don't have to be archival since I'll be taking the photos out once the show is over. Any suggestions would be appreciated since the $500 is mind blowing.

  2. #2
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    Pearl Paint

    #1 - Pearl Paint discounts frames starting at 6 of the same - discount depends on the brand.

    #2 - They carry a frame - and I tried to find a link for the frame online, but couldn't find it - It's black plastic, and the glass pops right out. They are reasonably priced, and the frame edge is so thin it's okay that it's not the most expensive frame. In fact, these frames are carried at CVS, but they are cheaper at Pearl - especially with the discount. Anyway, I think they are about $7 a pop for 8x10, a little more but still less than or around $10. If you need more info, I'll do a more extensive web search for the brand!

    Megan

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    Megan, thanks. I forgot to mention that the frames need to be 11X14 because of the mat surrounding the print. Luckily all of the prints are dry mounted and most matted.

  4. #4
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    Photo John turned me on to these guys: http://www.americanframe.com/

    I've used them before for metal frames and hardware kits, then just had single strength glass cut at a local glass supplier (very inexpensive this way, not at a craft or hardware store). American Frame ships quickly and their prices are very good.

    With an 11x14 finished size, the Standard profile should be fine and that comes out to $6.60 per frame. It includes the corner hardware and clips for the wire, but not the wire itself.

  5. #5
    Just a Member Chunk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerry Widen
    As I mentioned in an earlier thread I will be displaying my B&W photographs in the fine arts department gallery of my old college sometime in October/November. There will be 19 prints in total and at approx $25 or more per frame it will cost me $500. Money better spent elsewhere especially since I will probably not need nearly that many frames again. I'm looking for simple black frames which don't have to be archival since I'll be taking the photos out once the show is over. Any suggestions would be appreciated since the $500 is mind blowing.
    I don't know if they would be adequate to your needs but I have used document frames found at local business supply, craft supply, and even grocery store photo areas. They usually include glass and are a simple black frame that doesn't cost much.

  6. #6
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    Hmmmm...

    The frames I described *may* not work if they are matted on board with a window matte on top. I would get one at CVS and try it out first. However, Pearl still has a good selection of low-priced frames... with the discount!

    Megan

  7. #7
    Just a Member Chunk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chunk
    I don't know if they would be adequate to your needs but I have used document frames found at local business supply, craft supply, and even grocery store photo areas. They usually include glass and are a simple black frame that doesn't cost much.
    Also some at
    http://www.officedepot.com

    > Furniture > Office Furnishings > Document, Certificate & Picture Frames

  8. #8
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
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    A couple of things to keep in mind...

    First of all, Gerry, congrats on having the show. Yeah, it's easy to be shocked by the total cost of presenting your work. A lot of folks don't consider this when they "wish very hard" to exhibit their work...

    I just want to mention a few things. One, the $25 per for a frame alone seems a bit steep, even for good 11x14 frames (unless of course, you're including ALL the material such as hardware, mats and backing board, glass, framing wire, etc.). Hopefully some of the people here have turned you on to some decent discount framing suppliers.

    More importantly, I'm curious why you don't think you'd have a need for these frames again after this exhibit. Good frames can be broken down, stored and certainly reused again and again. You just need to make sure you take care of them. Nineteen pieces is really not considered a huge show. Don't you think you'll ever put an exhibit of this size together again?

    IMO, quality frames are an investment, not unlike any other in one's photo career or business. If it were me, I wouldn't lower my work with cheap frames. Especially if you are trying to sell your pieces. Besides, the cost of framing is added to the cost of the work.

    What I do is have a large inventory of standard 16x20 frames for my work. Some are old and show some wear. These I use as work frames, when pristine appearance is not important. Most of my frames are in real good shape, but not perfect. These are still pretty much "exhibition" worthy.

    Then I always keep about five or more new frames still wrapped. These I save for purchases, perhaps away from a show setting, and I use them and frame a piece fresh when it has to be perfect for a customer.

    Perhaps a compromise would be to frame the show in decent but budget frames, then buy a few nice ones for any purchased work, which you would then reframe.

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  9. #9
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    One more thing!

    I just remembered -
    I got a bunch of frames from Pearl for the work I've got going up this Saturday. They are nice frames, silver frames with glass, look like good quality - and they were only $11 and change each [minus whatever discount I got for buying a quantity.] They are built so that mounted and matted art can be placed in them.

    I second Asylum Steve - it's your work, it's good work, and it should be presented as such. But you shouldn't have to break the bank to do it! People are more likely to purchase a photo if it looks like care went into it. Not that I think you're gonna throw crap on the wall But it's amazing.... I saw some work up in a restaurant near me, and the photographer didn't frame it, just mounted it and laminated it on top. Which I suppose is fine, but.... the boards they were mounted on weren't even cut straight! It was difficult to get past that and look at the work. And for the price he was asking... oh man! I'm not going to pay $75 for a print on a crooked mount.

    Megan

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    Wow, thanks everyone for the replies. This place is amazing. I didn't know frames were that inexpensive. I have 5 or 6 nice plain black frames that I purchased at the local craft store. They list for $30 but almost always have sales 25-33% off. I have plenty of time so I can check out all of the suggested sources. I recently had a local glass place make a piece for a weird frame size about 10X13 and I think it was about 5 or 6 dollars. So I can go that route or get complete frames

    BTW more traditional photography doesn't seem to sell that well on Long Island. I forgot to mention I had one of my shots in a gallery in one of the small towns locally that just ended last week. It is a cooperative gallery that had a member show at the same time they a had an open call for street type photography. The member had a nice collection of photos of Times Square at night mostly the signs. Good stuff. My photo was among some very good street shots in another room. The show was a month and I was told not one photo was sold. I was shocked. I was there 3 times and there were always a few people milling about. In another gallery of the same type up the street the person there said they they sell very few photos also. So I don't expect to sell anything, or even care just want to get the stuff seen.


  11. #11
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    Good to know!

    I'm sorry I never got to the gallery to see your work - this June has been one of the busiest months of my life, I think! Ugh, as I prepare to hang some work in LI on Saturday, I'm disappointed that photography doesn't sell well out there. Oh well, at least my work will be seen.

    I had to go to Pearl yesterday to pick up some more frames. FYI, the brand I got is "Revoir" - I can't find it on the web, it must be a Pearl brand. The frames look like these though http://www.dickblick.com/categories/frames%2Dmetal/

    They were $11.88/piece for 11x14. The discount was 10% on 6-12 frames, and it increases from there. Don't quote me, but I think the discount for buying 25 of the same kind at the same time was 15% or 20%.

    I've also noticed that many people will frame their bio or artist's statement in a smaller frame of the same kind. So I bought an 8x10 frame at the same time, and it was discounted along with the 11x14's. I guess the size doesn't matter.

    Good luck! More budget-conscious options are out there!

    Megan

  12. #12
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    a little off the beaten path

    Christmas tree shops (if you have any in the area) sells nice frames for $6-9

    and check out PIER 1 IMPORTS sometimes they have reasonably priced frames for under $10...

    american frame seems the most reasonable I have sen around...having done framing they are WAY below the standard pricing....

    Congrats and good luck on your show..
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    Megan, I'll check out Pearl Paint as there is one about 10 minutes from where I live. I assume it is the same company. Where in Long Island are you having your work displayed?

  14. #14
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    Not sure yet!

    I'll post the address when I get it. It's not a big deal - Reg's massage therapist opened a new office, and it's big enough that she has gallery space too. So I'm sharing the space with another photographer. I'll post the address and hours when I get them! It's not Garden City, but it's in that area.

    Megan

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    I will definitely see it if that is OK with the massage therapists office. My work takes me all over Long Island.

  16. #16
    Hardcore...Nikon Speed's Avatar
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    Talking Wal Mart Baby

    Quote Originally Posted by megan
    #1 - Pearl Paint discounts frames starting at 6 of the same - discount depends on the brand.

    #2 - They carry a frame - and I tried to find a link for the frame online, but couldn't find it - It's black plastic, and the glass pops right out. They are reasonably priced, and the frame edge is so thin it's okay that it's not the most expensive frame. In fact, these frames are carried at CVS, but they are cheaper at Pearl - especially with the discount. Anyway, I think they are about $7 a pop for 8x10, a little more but still less than or around $10. If you need more info, I'll do a more extensive web search for the brand!

    Megan
    You can find 8X10 frames for $2.50 on up. 11X14 frames start at $5.00.

    My math (old math, before new math was invented) says 19 frames @ $5 each is $95 plus tax. $100 is a far cry from the $500 you were thinking it was going to be!

    Here's an 11X14 with a mat in it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Framing Advice-dscn1045-r640.jpg  
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    Thats a nice football shot. Looks like when my son played in the local pee wee league.

    $5 for a frame can't be beat but not sure I like the frame. I'm looking for a thiner frame The (expensive) frames I have used is a simple wood frame very nice but it is about the same width and on a some of my lighter shots visually competes with the photo. BTW I've been using a Dexter hand mat cutter which I picked up on ebay for $6. They are easy to use and do a great job.


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