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Russian Paintings gallery - painting gallery dedicated to the contemporary Russian fine art: painting, graphic arts, batic, art object, sculpture, icon, mosaic, art embroidered painting, art dolls, art glass, art enamel, hand-made copies of paintings, wall painting, аpplied arts, aerography arts, prints, giclees, posters, portrait on order, photography.

How to Frame a Painting

The frame is necessary in order to highlight the painting, focusing the viewer's attention on the image created by the artist. At the same time, the frame connects the painting with its surrounding space, entering the interior. Choosing the right painting frame gives completeness and highlights its beauty. How to properly frame the painting? What kind of frame to choose?

There are several schools of thought with regard to frame selection - but no hard and fast rules. The preferred thinking is that the work of art, and nothing else, should direct the selection of the frame. Here are some guidelines.

A painting's style should suggest the frame style. For example, a period painting or one of classical subject matter is well suited to a timeless, traditional, elegant gold-leafed frame or a handsome walnut or mahogany wood frame. Lighter, ethereal, or more abstract paintings may look best in sleek, less fussy frames. And for paintings that are in-between, there are transitional frames - those that blend elements of the traditional and the contemporary. Be aware that each frame has a specific profile, clearly seen when viewing the diagonal cut on a frame sample.

Each work of art is its own universe. When the frame is selected to be of the greatest benefit to the art, the framed piece can be hung anywhere. A contemporary painting hanging in a traditional room doesn't need to have a traditional frame; nor does a traditional painting in a contemporary room need a contemporary frame. And don't fall into the trap of choosing a frame to match others you already have; some of the most stunning groupings of paintings feature pieces in a wide variety of frame styles, sizes and finishes.

Larger paintings usually look best with wider mouldings and, therefore, larger frames. If, however, going big won't work for you and your space, a floater frame may help. Floater frames usually add only 1 to 4 inches to the height and width of a large painting, whereas a regular frame of an appropriate size for a large work may add as much as 7 to 12 inches to the overall dimensions.

Depending on the style of the painting, your framer may recommend a multilayered frame composition - one or more frame mouldings used together to achieve a unique look, with or without linen liner, plus fillet. A frame and its linen liner should never be the same width. There are no rules stating which should be wider - although it's often the frame.

The main principle of framing is this: the frame should be picked up for the painting itself, not for the furniture, walls, or interior. Otherwise after next refurnishing or renovation of your place you will have to buy a new frame.

The frame and the painting must complement, not compete with each other. You can achieve this if:

  • the frame and the painting match in the color range;
  • ornament or texture of the frame complements or repeats some motif(s) of the painting;
  • the image of the painting smoothly passes on to the frame.

Some advice on picture framing

  • Small pictures usually put in wide frames so that the total area of the frame would be larger than the total area of the painting.
  • Paintings made in warm colors are put in warm colour frames, and paintings made in cold colors - in cold colour frames.
  • If the image on the painting is made of simple lines, so the frame should be rather simple.
  • One should keep in mind that it's always the painting that dominates, and the frame is no more than an interlink between the painting and the interior.
  • The colour of the frame should either be a half-tone darker or a half-tone lighter than the basic tone of the painting, or should coincide with one of peripheral colours of the painting.
  • Natural wood fits all the paintings.
  • It's important not to forget about the style of your painting. No one frames an avant-garde painting into a heavy classic frame with moulding, as well as a Dutch school painting doesn't fit in a narrow glossy colored modern-looking frame.
  • You also should consider the depth of your frame. If you don't want the stretcher of your painting to be seen, you should choose the frame with depth no less than 1,5 cm.

How to choose a mount (a passe-partout)

  • For the painting with some sort of movement caught on it it's better to get a wide mount especially if the perspective goes beyond the frame.
  • The lower edge of the pass-partout should be wider that its sides and the upper edge. If the painting is vertical, than the upper edge should be wider then the sides, and if it's horizontal, the sides should be wider than the upper edge. If the painting is square, the lower edge should be wider than the upper and both sides - those three should be even.
  • Generally the side size of a mount is 6 cm.
  • Your passé-partout will look especially beautiful with a slip on it (it's a narrow stripe of a frame put on the edges).
  • The best color of the mount would be just of a bit darker tone than the lightest tone on your painting.
  • It's important to keep in mind that the passé-partout is just an interlink between the painting and the interior.
  • The mount should not merge with the frame.

Examples of our paintings framing

Still Life with Flowers

Canvas size: 90x60 cm

Warm tonality prevails on this painting, therefore a frame of warm tones fits to it: gold, bronze, wood (cherry, walnut). Also a frame with painted flowers on it is suitable. The painting created in the classical style, so classical frame would be preferable: wide (width from 7 cm), with stucco (bronze colour).

Framing of paintings Framing of paintings
Framing of paintings Framing of paintings
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Framing of paintings

Canvas size: 30x40 cm

Small paintings are generally being framed into wide frame that the total area of the frame would be more than the area of the painting.

Framing of paintings  
   
Framing of paintings

Canvas size: 50x60 cm

Cold tonality prevails on this painting which is created in the graphic style with small addition of burgundy-red colour. The following frame will be suitable: silver, chrome, natural wood, burgundy-red and black. The painting created in modern style, so the classical frame with stucco will fit it. The width of frame starts from 3 cm.

Framing of paintings Framing of paintings
Framing of paintings Framing of paintings
   
Framing of paintings

Canvas size: 62x52 cm

Warm and cold tonality prevails on this painting. The following frame of warm and cold hues will be suitable: gold, silver, natural wood, yellow, green, blue, red, terracotta, etc. The width of frame starts from 2 cm.

Framing of paintings Framing of paintings
Framing of paintings Framing of paintings
Framing of paintings Framing of paintings