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Tiki Central Forums Creating Tiki Other Crafts Why do artists insist on using oddball art print sizes?
Why do artists insist on using oddball art print sizes?
Tom Slick
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 26, 2005
Posts: 1092
From: The Beaches of South Bay, SoCal
Posted: 2007-04-21 8:55 pm   Permalink

Man, I spend $50-350 per print on the artists i appreciate, and the framing usually is double/triple the price of the print! Why do so many artists have to be different(and difficult! lol)? I just want an off the sales floor, Standard sized frame...Michaels wanted $180 for a custom 11"x17" frame with a simple black trim, and 1 basic mat board. That $180 was part of the 50% off sale! So regular would have been $360.00....Absolutely rediculous! I'll tape the print to my wall and call it a day at those prices! Sorry for the rant..hahaha, but sheesh...give a guy a break...(and not in the wallet, or where the wallet goes, for that matter!)

FrameFetish will be getting a call from me as soon as I can scrape together the dough...I have 8 unframed artworks from Shag to Marc Davis to Doug Horne...

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 04, 2005
Posts: 1600
From: SoCal
Posted: 2007-04-22 02:42 am   Permalink

after you call frame fetish, call me and ill carve you a custom frame...but its gonna cost you...Come-on dont be such a cheap-O,those prints will probly be worth alot more in a couple years,plus if you just bought the original art from the artist you wouldnt be complaining about the price of the frame so much, and if you realy like the art what does it matter what it costs to frame it...It looks good in the tiki bar doesnt it...live with it...kirby

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 31, 2003
Posts: 1795
From: Boise, Idaho
Posted: 2007-04-22 03:04 am   Permalink


Seriously take that 180.00 and buy yourself a mat cutter and a miter saw or box. Electric miter saws start at 90 bux or so. mat board cutters about 20 bux. Get you some UV glass, a glass cutter if u must, not too bad to pay to get glass cut at a glass shop, and use the saw to make your own frame whatever size u want. Mat board is cheap, just use archival safe....

Very GOOD investment if you plan on collecting prints to display.



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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 04, 2005
Posts: 1600
From: SoCal
Posted: 2007-04-22 03:08 am   Permalink

another thing... there are alot of awsome artist here on TC that would love to sell you there "original art" for alot less than you can buy a print for, from a more well known artist like shag for instance..just because there not as famous doesnt mean there not as good.I sell my custom carved,framed paintings for about $400 bucks... thats killing two tikis with one stone... but that said I would still recomend buying a framed print from doug horne, hes one of the best in my book...Even still its kinda a drag finding frames for odd-sized prints, I feel your pain...waaaaah...kirby

Kirby's Island.com****Facebook**

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 28, 2006
Posts: 163
From: Bakersfield, California
Posted: 2007-04-22 07:40 am   Permalink

Michaels is notorious for their framing scam of acting like they are giving you 50% off. Their cost for the frame with a reasonable profit margin could probably occur at $50 and even then it would be pricey. A standard-sized, ready-to-go frame of the same quality as their bottom end custom jobs can usually be had for $15 to $20. If a frame costs a multiple of the print it will contain, then it is not worth the price. It would not make a difference if the print were worth $10 or $1000, the Michaels frame price is obscene. Investing in a good mat cutter an using a standard frame is the best solution.

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Tom Slick
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 26, 2005
Posts: 1092
From: The Beaches of South Bay, SoCal
Posted: 2007-04-22 10:17 am   Permalink

Kirby, I wouldn't be such a cheap-o if I really could afford originals, but I cant, so I wind up "collecting" the things I like in forms of limited serigraphs/prints, haha...Its like if I had the money to buy originals, then the framing would be just a drop in the bucket, ya know?! But I am attracted to certain artists here on TC and abound, and shelling out $25-$150 for a limited print doesn't hurt the pocket too badly when I know its coming, besides helping support the artists that I get enjoyment out of their artwork. I would love to own original pieces by Shag(NOT because hes popular NOW,see..), Horne, Some Ryden, Shremek, Thompson, O'Connell, etc. etc.... but I'm afraid it would put me in the poorhouse, so I settle for next best thing...The serigraph/limited prints. I dont just go out and buy prints because of how popular the artist is. For me the artwork has to say something to me subliminaly while looking at it, make me feel something about it. Thats when I'll buy. But I can't justify spending double or more the money on the frame, then what I paid for the print. At that point, I should technically buy a frame for the more costly frame that holds the less costly artwork! Well, you see where I'm coming from...haha

SneakyTiki, that probably is the way to go nowadays...It's not like framing is a near lost art! I did look at the mat cutters , but have yet to look into the miter cutters. Thanks!

mzoltarp, thats how I feel summed up.
*Maybe ALL the artists have secret stock in Michaels and Aaron Brothers...lol*

Back to one of my original questions, is why don't artists use these standard sizes?
I'm all for and about artistic expression, but can't you show it in one of these standard frame sizes so i can show off your artwork & talent to friends & family maybe generating another fan out of this process? Is there a TRUE reason why standard sizes in the artist community are not used?

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 21, 2003
Posts: 1700
From: Yucaipa, CA
Posted: 2007-04-22 10:38 am   Permalink

I hate to admit it, but I'm a total cheap ass when it comes to framing art. I tend to just get a $9.99 frame that's bigger than the piece I'm framing and then buy a $1.99 piece of acid-free paper to put behind it. Voila.

I really should do my walls a favor though and finally have something done by Frame Fetish. Link takes incredible pieces of art and turns them into something truly extraordinary. (His
tables are amazing too.)

Guess that doesn't do anything to answer your question, Tom. I can see an original canvas being an odd size, but why not standardize when releasing prints?

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little lost tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 12, 2006
Posts: 7750
From: Orange,CA-right near the Circle!
Posted: 2007-04-22 11:24 am   Permalink

Kate's got a good idea there! You can get papyrus or bark paper for backing as well! Not that expensive and very exotic looking! Just did a print for the parking lot sale-open line-300 of 'em and I made 'em 9x12...that's a little bigger than your typical 8.5 x11 to cram more detail in them...Also,this made them suitable for matting in a 12x16 frame.....A lot of times,prints are from paintings and paintings and canvases aren't always standard size when shrunken down...It's nothing against you Mr. Slick,it's just that,while painting,prints are usually the last thing an artist is reflecting upon....At least they're nice enough to offer prints,because that's a lot of cash and time and screen/proof/color checks,and most artists would just rather be painting!One suggestion-carry a tape measure around and a list of standard frame sizes.....don't be caught off-guard! Also, thrift stores often have way cool old frames that just need a little re-staining or a dash o love and they are good to go!

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Tiki Shark Art
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 31, 2006
Posts: 3870
Posted: 2007-04-22 12:31 pm   Permalink

Tom Slick, yeah, I'm an artist and I run into the same friggin problem! I feel your pain! So, I had all these great posters and prints, and nothing on my walls cause I couldn't see spending more than the prints to get them framed. I even bought a mat cutter, and then I screwed up an expensive mat! (it's a bit harder than it looks, and takes a Little practice.) Then, I stated painting and I made a print, and was I even thinking about standard frame size? ....nope! I guess the answer is like LLT said: the artist just is not thinking about the end result when they begin painting. It's all about being inspired and putting the vision down in some kind of media. I swear, the next painting I do, after the weird sized one I'm working on now, is going to be a standard size! (unless of course, I can't find a standard sized canvas, or I forget).

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 18, 2006
Posts: 1974
From: San Diego
Posted: 2007-04-22 12:52 pm   Permalink

Kate, as usual, has hit the nail right - BING! - the first time.

IKEA makes great cheapo frames. Get an oversize one, cut your own matte or simply get some cool art paper - wallpaper, japanese rice paper, wrapping paper (great stuff, Shag even has a line of it) rattan mesh, etc., and cut it yourself.

I'm even cheaper than Kate, and buy frames at IKEA and sometimes just cut the frame back to size with a mitre box and two wood screws. Nobody has ever noticed the screws (flush) on the top and bottom of my frames - you only cut back one side, the other needn't be touched. I've also bought nice IKEA frames and spray painted/laquered them to match the art & matte.

As Little Lost points out, thrift stores are hung to the ceiling with bad art inside great frames. Use 'em. Turn them sideways if you have to! I still have a really lousy picture of a ship out in the garage, but the frame would cost 450 clams at any place in town.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 14, 2006
Posts: 435
From: Mobile, AL
Posted: 2007-04-23 10:24 am   Permalink

Tom, you for got to mention that you want a print from Frostiki.

BTW, don't necessarily blame the artist. Art paper comes in different sizes than frames for some reason. I've never under stood that, most of your standard frames are based on Photo paper sizes, not normal paper sizes.
find us at
Facebook andwww.frostiki.com

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Tipsy McStagger
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 21, 2004
Posts: 3681
From: HELL
Posted: 2007-04-23 5:39 pm   Permalink

it pays to shop around...some frame shops are actually really inexpensive..stay away from the chain stores...hit the mom and pops.....also, many artists get cheap frams for their art at the salvation army or the brown elephant......some times they have dollar days and everythings a buck!! you can score many frames for a few bucks ...then repaint them or decorate them as you like.....you'd be suprised st how good some of these look when finished up as opposed to the crap they were when originally purchased....get glass at home depot.....you can cut it to size right there....

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 14, 2004
Posts: 4284
From: Sydney, Australia
Posted: 2007-04-23 8:35 pm   Permalink


On 2007-04-22 10:38, Tiki-Kate wrote:
I hate to admit it, but I'm a total cheap ass when it comes to framing art. I tend to just get a $9.99 frame that's bigger than the piece I'm framing and then buy a $1.99 piece of acid-free paper to put behind it. Voila.

You can get nice tiki themed paper for matting too - check out scrapbooking supplies stores

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Uncle Laffo
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Sep 18, 2007
Posts: 76
From: Atlanta
Posted: 2008-05-10 01:15 am   Permalink

Actually the majority of the stuff I do is on stock size papers, one of which is 11 X 17, so that's not really so odd. Some of my stock is 502 x 610 mm so it seems to me the media would be the standard not the frame. It is Art after all, and I rarely say, "Hey it's time to do an 8 x 10." The best thing I've done is cultivate relationships with three or four Framers, I just don't have time to frame anymore. Stay away from the big places, it's a scam. There are hundreds of do it yourself frame kits available on line, you can order any length metal frame pieces you need and assemble them yourself. No saws needed. All you need is a flathead screw driver. If you want I can give you a step by step and what materials to use so you have an acid free, archival job for next to nothing. It's painfully easy.


[ This Message was edited by: Uncle Laffo 2008-05-10 01:27 ]

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