Choosing the Right Frame

I was recently asked by a friend to frame a canvas picture. This was an oil painting by the artist Phillis Morgans and depicted boats in an estuary.

My initial thoughts with canvas pictures would be to make a tray frame. This would allow the picture to appear to ‘float’ in the frame as it has a small gap all the way round the picture and this really sets it off.

However, the bottom edge of the painting was quite worn and a tray frame would only highlight this area so I thought a tray frame would not be the best choice under these circumstances.

Instead a more traditional approach would be best and I set about finding a conventional frame with a colour that would really enhance the picture and make it ‘zing’.

I tried all sorts of coloured frames, starting with black then white, wooden frames in oak, ash, maple and pine. Then a whole variety of coloured frames, some thin and narrow and others wide and ornate. Nothing matched. I just couldn’t not find the ‘one’ that would do the picture justice.

My solution was to make a frame and then paint it with a colour that would make the picture pop!

I found the easiest way to choose the right colour was to lay samples of mountboard on the picture until I came across one that I was looking for. This colour turned out to be ‘Silver Grey’.

I took the silver grey mountboard sample to my local paint shop and asked them to scan the colour and make a small match-pot of paint.

I think this colour really does enhance the picture. What do you think? I have been advised by my friend that this picture is now up for sale. Contact me for details.

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