Need your advice ! What should I do ?

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Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Keith Hewitt » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:22 pm

Go to my gym/ swimming pool today and see a very good display of original art, mostly water colours in the entrance.
Selling for around £50 - £100 depending on size.
I know the artist Janet Rawsthorn - not well, am very friendly with her " best" friend
She makes a reasonable living from her paintings and also sells some as greetings cards £2 each

All the mounts are cream core UGH :Slap: :shock:


Looked on the backs but no framers name - just the artists

What should I do ?
I have visited framers in 83 countries - no two are the same.

"Cut mounts are like haircuts, they are both bad when overcut."
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby poliopete » Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:30 pm

Stop being nosey :giggle:

Only kidding Keith :D

Perhaps have a careful word with you friend in the hope it gets back to artist.

Thanks btw PFM is now sorted.

Regards.

Peter
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby John Ranes II, CPF, GCF » Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:58 pm

Tough one Keith...

Some artists have a good understanding of conservation framing methods while others entrust those skills to a capable framer who knows what they are doing.

However, some artists only see the bottom line price as a potential barrier to the sale, and disrespect their own original work. :Slap: Some artists simply don't know or don't care. :?

You could leave an anonymous note with the front desk at the gym sharing that... "You loved the piece such-and-such and would love to take it home but noticed that the framing is not of conservation quality, so decided against the purchase."

Since you know a friend, it would be awkward to use your own name.... On the other hand, you could just word it carefully from a friend who cares because your artwork is really quite lovely!

Best,

John
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Rainbow » Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:31 am

Some artists do very strange things. I came across one amateur artist who glues his watercolours to an undermount and then glues a mount on top (and sells them unframed). I really liked one of his paintings and would otherwise have bought it. I told him I was disappointed not to be able to buy it and the reason why, but I got the impression he thought I was being overly fussy. Another amateur artist whose work I see from time to time, signs his work in a prominent position on the art instead of discreetly in a corner. To my eye, it ruins the art but maybe other people buy it, I don't know. It baffles me that some artists seem to go out of their way to make their work less saleable. It's as if they don't really want to part with it :?
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby prospero » Sun Aug 13, 2017 1:21 pm

Uncle Keith. :D

I'll tell you something now that will stun you rigid. :shock:

I've painted 100s of watercolours and almost without exception they have all been mounted using
'cream core' board. Daler Sand Ingres to be exact. The reason? The whitecore version looks BAD.
These mounts all had washlines.

I have had the opportunity to examine paintings that I framed 30+ years ago using really carp board.
This was before the cream core was upgraded a bit with the addition of buffering agents.
One in particular had a really brown bevel. But the painting was unaffected.

I'm talking with my artist's hat on now. Did I do wrong? :roll:
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Not your average framer » Sun Aug 13, 2017 10:01 pm

I see plenty of artworks framed in cream core mountboard, artists do this and they need to make a living and not everything that they produce as artists is going to sell. Lots of very good artists don't have deep pockets and they still need to pay the bills. They save money where they can, on anything that they can, to make the money stretch to cover everything. Many of them buy cream core mountboard, because that's all they can afford.

The buyers don't mind at all, they are the ones with the money and will foot the bill to have it framed properly and that's what keeps us framers in business. The bit the artists is selling that matters is the artwork. Most artists don't have much money and if you think that targeting the artists to get more money out of them, I think that you are trying to get the money out of the people who usually don't have it. It always the buyers who have the money and they don't mind spending it either.

Struggling artists are looking for encouragement, not nit picking about the quality of mount. You make it sound like the quality of the mount is more important than the quality of the artwork. All the hours of hard work and practicing to achieve a good result and then somebody tells them that they won't buy it because they don't like the mount. Sorry to tell you this, but most of the buying public don't know one mount from another and the mount is not an issue. If they like the picture they will buy it, if they don't like the picture then the mount won't persuade them to buy either.
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Rainbow » Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:43 pm

Not your average framer wrote:You make it sound like the quality of the mount is more important than the quality of the artwork. All the hours of hard work and practicing to achieve a good result and then somebody tells them that they won't buy it because they don't like the mount.
It's not a matter of not liking the mount. I buy amateur art to mount/frame and sell. I can't frame and sell art that someone else has mounted, and if the art isn't removable from the mount because the art has been glued to the mount and the undermount, then the artist has lost a sale. I often re-mount art that a customer has bought from an amateur artist who has used a mount that's does nothing to enhance the art, or it's too narrow for the customer's taste, or they want a double mount, or whatever. If the art can't be removed from the mount, some people might buy it but some people won't, and I don't understand why an artist would limit their market in that way. It must take longer to glue art to a mount and undermount than it would to hinge it, or even to tape it as many artists do.
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Keith Hewitt » Mon Aug 14, 2017 4:38 am

Thanks to all who have posted so far. Some interesting and surprising ( Prospero) answers so far.

Not your average framer wrote: They save money where they can, on anything that they can, to make the money stretch to cover everything. Many of them buy cream core mountboard, because that's all they can afford.


Or is the reason most art shops persist in selling cream core boards and that's probably where most artists go for paper, paint and some mount board. Whilst art shops persist in selling the lowest quality available, with a beermat core, artist will continue to buy it.

prospero wrote:I've painted 100s of watercolours and almost without exception they have all been mounted using
'cream core' board. Daler Sand Ingres to be exact. The reason? The white core version looks BAD.

I have had the opportunity to examine paintings that I framed 30+ years ago using really carp board.
This was before the cream core was upgraded a bit with the addition of buffering agents.
One in particular had a really brown bevel. But the painting was unaffected.

I'm talking with my artist's hat on now. Did I do wrong? :roll:


Prospero - you did stun me :shock:
I accept your point that you dislike the white core. But you admit that one had a really brown bevel. You say the painting was unaffected. You were lucky. Cream core contains lignin, and other impurities which leads to the brown bevels, and acidic degradation. And at the same time those impurities can/will harm the painting itself, which will probably reduce its value.

Good news, the board you need to consider is now available from LION. MUNKEN Mount board. The PURE colour is conservation quality, and the core is neither cream , nor white. Its the same colour as the two outsides as its made from 4 layers all exactly the same colour, And it takes washlines. LION do sample sheets quarter size packs so you can get a sheet 40 x 60 cms 1.4mm to try.
And should you want to invest in a whole pack of 25 sheets it will cost you £2.97 per sheet. Or you can stick with the cream core costing £ 3.11 for Daler or £3.60 for Colourmount. The MUNKEN is also 10% bigger than the cream core boards and comes in a superb carton with end protectors. Plus its conservation quality ! Are you going to try it now ?
I have visited framers in 83 countries - no two are the same.

"Cut mounts are like haircuts, they are both bad when overcut."
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Jamesnkr » Mon Aug 14, 2017 9:44 am

I bought some cream-core mountboard two years ago - it was described as buffered, and I didn't want white core so assumed it was good stuff. It went brown almost whilst you watched it.

If you're going to washline it, then you might as well tint the bevel...
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby prospero » Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:07 am

Tinting the bevels is a PITA. I've tried it and it's a bit of a hit'n'miss process. :wink: Washlines are irksome enough
without compounding the agony. The Daler colour I use is a nice dark ivory colour. The cream core tones nicely. :D
Even if the bevel does darken.
What really looks bilious is strong coloured boards, particularly blues, where the bevel has browned.

I do agree 100% with the point about welding the entire mount/art together so that it needs extensive work to separate.

Even worse. People who sign the mounts and not the prints. :evil:
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Keith Hewitt » Tue Aug 15, 2017 6:39 pm

This topic has had 292 views, but very few replies
And the replies are almost totally opposites :shock:
Prospero uses cream core, non conservation, whilst John Ranes suggests a Conservation mount

Come on you forumers - surely you read the topic and had an opinion. :?:
Lets hear what you thoughts are. :idea:
I have visited framers in 83 countries - no two are the same.

"Cut mounts are like haircuts, they are both bad when overcut."
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby prospero » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:44 pm

What makes a board worthy of the sobriquet 'conservation' ?

There are boards with much higher acid content the cream core. By that principle a cream core board
is conservation relative to one that a a higher acid content. Or nothing at all.

What it says on the tin is often highly misleading. :roll:

What about the acid content of the card/paper that forms the substrate of the art? A lot of art papers
fall way short of the 'conservation' attributes of most mountboards. Including cream core.

Nobody considers that. :wink: :lol:
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Keith Hewitt » Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:57 am

Prospero,
To save me typing my reply, I am copying and pasting a really good article written by Geoff Leech at Croppers who make the Artique boards sold by Arqadia. It explains the various boards really well. Hope it helps you and anyone else who stops to read it.
========================================================================================================
What are the different types of mountboard that are produced?
We produce four different types of mountboard: Museum 100% cotton fibre; Conservation Quality grade; Aesthetic White or Black core and a Standard Core range. We’re unique for the fact that we can produce all of these different types at our own mill, without the need for secondary suppliers.

How is the mountboard made?
At the mill we have four fourdrinier paper machines, three of which make all the elements required to produce all our mountboard ranges, including specialist features such as additional textures, embossing and surface coating.  We use neutral pH and AKD sizing regimes, alpha cellulose or cotton fibres with pigment dyes, which have a high lightfastness and bleed resistance. All the elements are then brought together with neutral pH water-based adhesives via a state of the art 1.9m wide 4ply laminating machine.

What is the difference between conservation and non-conservation mountboard?
A conservation mountboard must consist of high quality alpha cellulose (min 87%) and must not contain any OBAs (Optical Bleaching agents) or Lignin, both of which can cause fading and yellowing. They must also be, and continue to be, alkaline pH and chemically stable.

What are the differences in the levels of quality?
Non-conservation boards can include waste fibres, non-pigment dyes, OBA and Lignin, all of which can lead to fading, yellowing, and an early degradation of the board.

What are the benefits of buying higher grade mountboard?
Apart from peace of mind and ensuring that the best materials available are used, the benefits are in protection, preservation and providing the highest level of permanence and resistance to deterioration and change.  Also, using alpha cellulose fibres extends the life of cutting machine blades due to its smooth, dense composition.  Using grades such as Standard and bulky mechanical (beermat) fibres can cause ragging as well as yellowing and acidic deterioration.

What issues can arise with mountboard and what are the solutions?
Dirt specks are the bane of a mill’s life, especially for us with over 4000 colours in production, approximately 60 colour changes per week and a fast-flowing river source that’s either got too much or too little water in it!
However, by ensuring that we programme the paper machines with less critical orders prior to making mountboard, plus employing dirt scanners, filters, refiners and count checks we can minimise the impact downstream.  We also inspect every pale colour and the top 20 sheets during processing; if any are found to be beyond our agreed tolerance, we then proceed to hand sorting every pallet.

Mountboard consists of living, breathing fibres and will be affected by humidity and moisture changes. By storing boards flat in their bags until required, the board has the best chance of remaining stable and flat throughout the cutting process.
==================================================================================================

I cant comment on the papers artists choose to use. But I do know there are plenty of good quality papers to choose from, that should not fade, bleed, yellow or degrade.
I have visited framers in 83 countries - no two are the same.

"Cut mounts are like haircuts, they are both bad when overcut."
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Steve N » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:15 am

Funny a term was used only yesterday in another thread https://www.theframersforum.com/viewtop ... 32&t=15710
regarding the Conservation Police :giggle: :giggle:
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby prospero » Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:48 am

I have to say that I was one of the first with by bowl out when white-cored/acid-free/conservation/whatever
mountboard came on the market. There was a great raising of awareness on conservation techniques from the early
'80s onwards. Prior to that, most jobbing framers would not really pay heed to conservation aspects. Some still don't.

But.... The wheel has rolled a bit too far in many cases, whereby people will agonise over things that don't really matter
while ignoring important things that do matter a lot.

I don't want to get into a slanging match on this but one thing that bugs me is backing boards. Some folks (who shall remain
nameless) insist on using card backing board. OK, MDF is not perfect but used with a polyethylene membrane it's the ideal
backer**. The card stuff (IMHO) is far too flimsy. The corrugated stuff offers little to no physical protection. Same with foamcore.
But as it is sold with conservation or acid-free tags folks lap it up. It may have all the conservation credentials but if something gets
jammed in the back all the Ph ratings count for nothing. You art is knackered in a second. MDF will absorb a lot more abuse.

I sometimes get the impression that some folks (customers and framers) regard conservation materials as somehow having an
active effect. Put something acid-free near your art and it will somehow preserve it. It has no active effect. If a framed item
carries the seeds of it's own destruction then no amount of conservation materials/techniques will prevent it ultimately going
manky. Might slow it down a tad... :lol:

** I'm talking backing boards here. NOT undermounts. :wink:
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Re: Need your advice ! What should I do ?

Postby Not your average framer » Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:35 pm

It's not always a simple decision when choosing a suitable backing board. Not all situations are exactly the same, but the marketing people would like to create the culture where everyone ends up using something from the variety of modern non MDF boards. Well a lot of the thinking behind things like the Guild Commended Framer qualification comes down to the framer demonstrating that he, or she has a good enough understanding of the technical aspects of framing an artwork in the most appropaite and satisfactory manner.

There are decisions that the framer needs to determine as the most suitable for the particular framing job, because this is not a one size fits all decision. I don't particularly like certain aspects of MDF, but I would also admit that there are very real limitations with just about all of the modern products that are offered specifically as backing boards. Physical resilliance, ridgidity and durability being particular areas where most of these can be considered as lacking. For myself, one concern would be when choosing a suitable backing board for a shodow box frame.

This is a case where the glass is separated from the backing board by the space within the frame and this can dictate the need for something with more ridgidity and at times something of greater thickness the normal. Regardless of whether you like MDF, or not, there will still remain situations where MDF is likely to be the backing board which will tick the necessary boxes, the the modern alternatives can not. This is the time when the framers level of knowledge is required to mitigate the generic problems which come with Using MDF.

Most, if not all of us, there is a good understanding of the negative properties of MDF. These mainly are mold growth in humid conditions and the effects of impurities within the MDF affecting the artwork. Mylar polymer film is a common material for creating a barrier bewteen the artwork and the MDF, the of course is not technically as good as glass, or metal, but there certainly are a number of framers who consider this as a reasonable and practical alternative. Also there are various sealing preparations to seal the surface of the MDF against any environmental homidity, or dampness.

I think the case for not resorting to MDF is still not completely proven at this stage. Myself, I still find the justification for stock a variety of backing board to enable me to pick and choose different backing boards according to the preveilling requirements. I was able to obtain and stock a extremely solid 5mm corrogated backing board for Brittania at one time, by that is now gone! My alternative is now 6mm MDF, but in most cases I apply and surface sealer and use proprietry barrier material used by the construction industry. I am fortunate to have a local supplier for this product.

I am not a big fan of the corrogated types of backing boards, but they still have their uses, particularly because it is possible to crush the edges with a small roller, where the frame rebate is barely deep enough. I also have the ortion of gluing two thicknesses of these boards together with their flutes opposed by 90 degrees which creates some useful added regidity. I buy this particular board by the box full, which I find to be both practical and financially advantageous to do so. This particular board is one of the more economic versions of this type of board.

I also stock two types of solid kraft boards, one non-waterproof and one waterproof "so called" conservation board. At one time I used to be able to buy Conservatek conservation backing board, which was execellent by alas it is no longer available. Finally I also stock 5mm foamboard and 4mm Correx. The 4mm Correx is what I used as my choice of waterproof backing board, I only buy a few sheets at a time from a local packaging supplier. Correx is not particular ridgid and not particularly able to resist penetration damage when impacted by anything with sharp edges, etc.
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