Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Effect of double sided tape on artwork

This inkjet printed photographic print was stuck to a piece of mountboard with double sided self adhesive tape, the solvents in the tape can be seen in the image on the right coming through the paper and causing the yellow discolouration on the image border. Double sided tape is very useful, (my wife is very fond of using it for all sorts of creative tasks with her school children!) but in framing it is used mainly for attaching two pieces of mountboard together to make a double mount, and it should not be used to fix the artwork.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Repairs to a contemporary gilded frame

Contemporary gilded frames can be easily damaged, especially as artists work often has to travel from gallery to gallery. This frame had two big chunks out of the inner gilded section on the top and bottom lengths of the frame. The loose pieces of gesso were removed and the wood sized with rabbit skin glue. As the wood surface was badly dented and uneven it was filled with BEVA gesso filler. Then traditional gesso was applied over the filler, I put on about 5 coats, until it was raised higher than the surrounding areas so I could sand it level. 

I used 240, 400, and 800 aluminium oxide paper to sand the gesso, trying to get it as even as possible with the original surface. The masking tape around the repair helps to sand the new gesso without damaging the surrounding surface. I mixed up some bole using three different colours to try and match the existing bole as closely as possible, and applied four coats. I gave the bole a light sand with 1600 paper and burnished it gently with 0000 wire wool.

I then water gilded the repaired area with 23.5ct gold leaf. After a few minutes the leaf was pressed firmly into contact with the bole substrate, to eliminate any air bubbles under the leaf and ensure a good bond.

The last job was to lightly distress the new leaf with 0000 wire wool and blend it in with the original gilding. The picture below shows the finished repair, which is unnoticeable to anyone who does not know it is there, even under close inspection the frame looks original, at a fraction of the cost of a new water gilded frame.

Minor repairs to Leader frame

Photos 1 and 2
The damaged part of the corner is removed and then securely glued in place with B72 acrylic adhesive. Masking tape is used to hold it in place while the glue dries. For a simple repair like this I often leave the painting in the frame, although it is covered with a piece of silicone release paper.

Photo 3 and 4
A mould is taken from another corner, the material used here is called Otoform and is a two part silicone mould making putty. I used a two part epoxy putty to replace the missing section, the epoxy putty is positioned and then the mould is pressed in place to replicate the detail. The epoxy stays workable for about 4 hours, and sets hard overnight. Once fully set the new section and areas around the repair are sanded lightly and tidied up to blend them together.

Photo 5 and 6
The new section is painted with No.52 red/brown Pelikan Plaka paint. I then used Roberson acrylic size to gild the section with No.2 metal leaf, in keeping with the existing frame finish, which is metal leaf and bronze powder.

Photo 7 and 8
The repair is sealed with button polish, and then toned to match the existing finish with dry pigments and wax.

Monday, 26 April 2010

More workshop photos


I know this is getting a little boring, but in the future I will be glad of a step by step record of building the workshop. In the bottom photo you can see where the front doors will be, mine is the one on the right. The top photo shows the windows and fire exit in the back wall, from the left is the toilet window, then main workshop window, next the fire exit and the furthest is a small window in the 'messy' room, which will be partitioned from the main workshop and be where sawing/cutting moulding, spraying, and sanding will happen. The roof beam near the toilet window is where the two workshops will be separated.

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Classic and Contemporary

Old meets new with the juxtaposition of a modern flamingo oil on board by Jeremy Houghton with a reproduction Spanish 17th Century Baroque style frame.This lovely frame came from the Lacy Gallery in London, a dream shop for anyone who loves antique frames.

Friday, 23 April 2010

Melvyn Warren-Smith

A little 19th century oil on board

A nice old oil painting, framed in a water gilded Victorian style frame with mitre leaf corners. The frame profile is the outer part of a 'Watts' frame with a painted gesso slip.

Melvyn Warren-Smith

I've just finished lots of frames for an exhibition of work by Leamington Hastings based artist, illustrator, and art teacher Melvyn Warren-Smith. The exhibition is from Saturday 1st to Monday 3rd May.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Broadway Arts Festival

I am looking forward to the fast approaching Broadway Arts Festival, where work by John Singer Sargent RA and many of his contemporaries will be on display in Broadway, where he created his famous painting 'Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose'. 
There are many events over the festival, including art competitions open to all, and a 'lantern' themed competition for school children, who's work I will be mounting for the exhibition display. 
Sargent took a strong interest in his frames: Article on the frames of John Singer Sargent.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Work in progress and some corner samples

A load of gilded frames waiting to be painted and finished this coming week. The corner samples are of two antique frame styles, these still need some final toning and antiquing, and a white gold water gilded profile.

Water gilded frame

This frame was supplied by a customer, a water gilded frame on dark grey bole, with burnished inner and outer edge and matt middle scoop. I had to cut the grey mount with a gold slip to make the picture fit the frame. The profile is the same as the one I used on the sailor portrait painting in an earlier post.

Monday, 12 April 2010

Another example of bad work

Here is another example of poor quality framing, masking tape is totally unsuitable for attaching art to the mount! The top picture shows how the art has been secured all the way round with masking tape, this stops the paper from naturally moving with changes in temperature and humidity, and can cause bad rippling and unnecessary stress of the paper.

Generally speaking the art should be fixed with only two small hinges at the top using a water activated adhesive and archival paper. The bottom photo is from the front of the art (there are drawings on both sides), here you can easily see the solvent adhesive in the masking tape coming through the paper, (nasty spots where the mount meets the image) causing potentially irreversible damage to the art.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

This does not actually look that different from the last photo, but lots has been done! mainly the second layer of bricks and the floor has been leveled ready for the concrete.

A damaged frame before repair

I get lots of jobs like this one, where the corners or centres on swept or ornate frames take a knock, and are damaged. You can see in the photos where two of the corners have been damaged, one simply has a small leaf curl missing, while the other needs a larger section replacing. I will take some photos of this frame when it has been repaired. The painting is a lovely English landscape by Benjamin Williams Leader.

Sunday afternoon framing

I've had to get quite a few jobs finished today, have not got nearly as much done as I'd hoped, but it always seems to work out that way. This is one of my standard water gilded and painted frames with a gesso slip.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Busy week

The builders have been very busy this week, and at last we have had some great weather. This photo is from last weekend, so I will post some more photos at the weekend to show the progress. The framing work has also been very busy, doing work for artists: Jeremy Houghton, Melvyn Warren-Smith, and Simon Davis, along with various other private and trade jobs. Next week is going to be even busier...

Artist Jeremy Houghton

Broadway artist Jeremy Houghton collecting some framing in style! This fabulous Bentley has been in his family since his Grandfather bought it brand new many years ago.
Jeremy paints in oils, watercolours and other mediums and is always coming up with new and interesting ideas for framing his work. He is currently rather fond of painting flamingoes.