BUSINESS ÂŁ6.50 January 2014 fineart.co.uk
Know your hardware Spring Fair preview ICC profiles explained The power of PR
Fujifilm Corporation has been declared one of the world’s Top 100 Innovators for the second year running, in the Thomson Reuters list for 2013. The list recognises Fujifilm’s patent portfolio, and deployment of intellectual property to drive innovation in the company’s world-leading product range.
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See the new FRONTIER-S Dry Minilab, above, with new six-colour Vividia® inkjet technology on Fujifilm Dry Photo Paper in Lustre or Gloss. It has a super-small worktop footprint of only 43 x 46cm (under 18" square). Find out more at all the shows! Maximise Your Business Opportunity – ideal for Kiosk system, Minilab, Event Photography, Retail, Studios. Make print sizes from 5 x 3.5" right up to 8 x 39" panoramic, 360 prints an hour (6 x 4"). It’s scalable to fit volume – buy in configurations of one, two, or three (below).
It’s show-time for Fujifilm in 2014 with three major trade shows open to photographers coming up. Time to show off the best user-friendly fast, dry printing systems ideal for retail and studio businesses – plus the acclaimed Finepix X camera series.
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY Here’s when and where you can meet Fujifilm UK from January to March 2014
The Societies Trade Show January 17-19th Hilton London Metropole Hotel www.swpp.co.uk/convention Pre Register Free till 31/12/2013
Spring Fair – February 2-6th NEC Birmingham www.springfair.com Pre Register for Free Entry Also ask to see ASK 4000 4000, 2500 and the Quick Print Station 300 (above) – check the full range of print sizes and output offered by Fujifilm’s specialists in vibrant new dry, chemical-free, photofinishing. The ASK-4000 makes prints up to 8 x 12" inches and delivers an 8 x 10" in only 40 seconds. The ASK-2500 makes prints up to 5 x 7" and produces 6 x 4s in under 7 seconds each, making 600 prints from one loading of economical dye sublimation media. The star for independent photographers is the QPS shown, based on the ASK-300 at less than £1,500+VAT, which makes prints up to 8 x 6 (300 6 x 4s per hour) and is so small you can transport it to events. The touch screen terminal system incorporated in this boosts sales as customers choose photo after photo themselves to output!
The Photography Show March 1st-4th NEC Birmingham www.photographyshow.com Pre Register for Free Entry for professionals and trade
Tel: 01234 572138 email: firstname.lastname@example.org web: www.fujifilm.co.uk
The new X-E2 kit and acclaimed 14mm ƒ/2.8 superwide, right.
Long lenses are not off limits for mirrorless systems! The new Fujinon XC 50-230mm ƒ3.5-6.3 gives you all the stabilised reach you need. Fujifilm’s Finepix X series cameras are taking over the mirrorless compact system world, with a full range of bodies from the tiny X-A1 to the now classic professional grade X-Pro1, and a constantly expanding roadmap of unbeatable Fujinon lenses. Alongside these the X20 and X100S with fixed zoom or prime lenses stand out as stand-alone photographic companions. The latest pocketable X-Q1 puts the X20’s sensor and quality into a family and fashion friendly deluxe design with optional real leather case.
See the Epson 24" T3000 wide format printer at Spring Fair. Faster print times and more competitively priced than other models this 4-colour printer can also print direct from a digital scanner. Bundled with Fujifilm’s Easy Studio Print RIP you can create an impressive range of profitable products from POS to pop up banners and so much more.
Contents Art Business Today, January 2014, Issue 1
26 Spring Fair preview A look at the highlights of the art and framing section at Spring Fair International, Birmingham, 2-6 February
First published June 1905 as the Fine Art Trade Journal
BUSINESS 34 Making a splash Martin Tracy GCF on how creative promotions generate business 38 The power of PR PR grabs attention and is enticingly cost-effective say our experts
ART 44 Whatâ€™s it worth? Advice for retailers to give to customers wanting art valued 48 Maintaining a high profile A guide to understanding the value of bespoke ICC profiles
FRAMING 54 Designed to sell Sponsored by LION Practical guidance on how to sell quality bespoke framing 60 Do you know hardware? US framer Chris Paschke analyses options for hanging pictures
REGULARS 10 Trade news 19 Comment 22 Face to face: Karen Wallis 30 Product news 43 The art of good business 53 Business tips for artists 58 Pete Binghamâ€™s agony 63 Trade secrets 64 B2B: classifieds 66 Last word: Marie Leonard, Art on the Street
COVER An artwork from Antonio Russo. See more work from this artist on page 13 and at arussoart.com
ART BUSINESS TODAY
22 January 2014 5
Letter from the editor Out go goods retailers, in come service providers?
Art Business Today Published by the Fine Art Trade Guild 16-18 Empress Place, London SW6 1TT, UK T: +44 (0)20 7381 6616 email@example.com www.fineart.co.uk Publisher Louise Hay firstname.lastname@example.org Editor Annabelle Ruston email@example.com Advertising manager Kasia Szkolnicka firstname.lastname@example.org Subscriptions Moira Sanders email@example.com Contributors Emma Bell Pete Bingham GCF Pauline Hutchinson Chris Paschke GCF CPF Alan Reed Martin Tracy GCF Ian Windebank Leszek Wolnik Publication dates Art Business Today is published five times per year: January, April, June, August and October Subscriptions 2014 UK Europe World One year £30 £36 £44 Two years £53 £62 £74 To subscribe, call 020 7381 6616 or visit our website, www.fineart.co.uk, and click on the ‘go to Art Business Today magazine’ button Liability ©All rights reserved. ABT is intended to inform but no liability can be accepted for action taken, or not taken, in reliance on it Guild CEO Louise Hay Master of the Guild Steve McKee GCF Adv Like us on Facebook facebook.com/artbusinesstoday Follow us on Twitter twitter.com/abtmag
6 Janaury 2014
uring the 109 years since Art Business Today was first published (as The Fine Art Trade Journal back then), it has undergone many new looks. We are excited about its latest re-design, which will make it easier for you to find the tips, in-depth analysis and news that are relevant to your business. It’s inevitable that the magazine reads differently than it did over a century ago, but our aims are the same: to help art and framing businesses develop through sharing information, inspiration and ideas. An aspect of British retailing that has certainly changed over the last 109 years is the role of our high streets. A recent piece in The Guardian entitled ‘Out go goods retailers, in come service providers’ looked at where our high streets are going next. If The Guardian is right, it’s good news for art and framing retailers. Their argument is that our high streets are in the midst of a revolution as traditional independent shops are replaced by service providers such as mobile phone outlets, coffee shops and nail bars. The total number of independent shops crept up by almost one per cent last year, despite outof-town shopping centres and the rise in internet shopping. ‘We are seeing a fundamental structural change,’ said Matthew Hopkinson of research company LDC, acting for the British Independent Retailers’ Assocation. ‘We are seeing the death of traditional shops and the rise of services which offer the personal touch.’ If the future of our high streets is to be defined by service-orientated businesses offering the personal touch, that’s surely good news for framers and galleries. But to take advantage of this trend retailers have to promote their bespoke credentials, including services such as design advice and home delivery. That’s not to say you won’t be able to sell greeting cards, ready-made frames, gifts and art materials any more; a unique collection of specialist products can be part of the service you offer your customers. Independent coffee shops are the fastest growing small businesses on the high street; the number of boutique coffee shops in British town centres grew by 500 per cent last year. Contrary to what you might suppose, chains such as Starbucks and Costa have actually fuelled this growth, by making us aware of good coffee and creating a demand for it. Apparently coffee enthusiasts see the benefits of being able to chat to the owners, and they find independents to be cosier and more personal than chains. The same thinking could be applied to art and framing: chain stores and multiples create awareness of and demand for quality furniture and home accessories, then these newly informed customers seek out independent galleries and framers to provide them with unique products that won’t be the same as those in their friends’ houses. When the Fastframe franchise opened in the UK in the 1980s, framers thought it would take their business. In fact, these high profile outlets and their marketing budgets created awareness of what a difference a frame makes which, in the end, helped all picture framers. (The franchise ran into problems in the early 1990s and withdrew from the UK. An example of how large organisations cannot always respond to changing market conditions with the same level of flexibility as small businesses.) I’m pleased to be able to begin the new year with positive thoughts for our readers. Annabelle Ruston ART BUSINESS TODAY
Products: Buckingham Fine Art, Chantry Fine Art
INSPIRING YOUR BUYING THE LATEST PRODUCTS AND TRENDS FROM 3,000 EXHIBITORS, ACROSS 13 SHOW SECTORS 2– 6 FEBRUARY 2014, NEC BIRMINGHAM, UK REGISTER NOW AT SPRINGFAIR.COM/REGISTER USING PRIORITY CODE SFEM33
News Please email news stories to firstname.lastname@example.org
New look for Hahnemühle
Frame Design Annabelle Ruston
New books available from the Guild AN UPDATED second edition of the Artist’s Guide to Selling Work, which has been re-printed many times since it was first published in 2005, has been published. The book, which is by Annabelle Ruston and is published jointly by the Fine Art Trade Guild and Bloomsbury, now includes sections on social networking and internet marketing. Creating a website, maximising hits and managing sales via online stores are all examined. The chapter on printing your own work has been substantially extended, particularly the sections on image capture and buying your own equipment. Also new are case studies from seven commercially successful artists, which bring the information given in the book to life. The guide provides all the advice artists and craftspeople need to sell their work in today’s competitive market. ABT editor Annabelle Ruston has also written a book entitled Frame Design, which is available as an economic e-book or a spiral-bound hard copy. This fully illustrated manual includes information on design theory, working with customers, mount design, frame finishes and contemporary alternatives to frames. The book aims to help framers understand the looks that are currently in demand and offers advice on how to create designs that will delight customers and ensure they keep coming back. The chapter on design theory was written by experienced framer Mark Wilson, now MD of Framiac UK, who previously owned a frame shop for 20 years. Mark examines issues including the golden ratio, balance, proportion, visual weight and colour combinations. Annabelle Ruston spent time in the workshops of award-winning framers including David Wilkie GCF, Lyn Hall GCF Adv, Richard Williams GCF and Ian Dixon GCF. She gathered a plethora of tips and ideas on how to make customers’ artwork look its best and how to provide a thoroughly bespoke service that people will tell their friends about. Both books can be ordered from the Guild website, or save postage and pick up copies from the Guild at Spring Fair International (Hall 4, Stand D120). fineart.co.uk 10 January 2014
HISTORIC PAPER manufactuer Hahnemühle has updated its logo, corporate design and websites. ‘Our new look is clear, elegant and timeless. It has an independent and unmistakable character and represents values that have been built up since the company was founded in 1584,’ says general manager Simon Waller. hahnemuehle.com
Updated website for Framiac PRICING AND management software manufacturer Framiac have released an updated newlook website. Quicker and easier to navigate, the website also shows many features that are unique to Framiac’s software. There are more videos offering helpful tips and tutorials, and downloading the trial is even easier. ‘Pricing a picture frame correctly can be very complex, so we want to make the process as simple as possible,’ sums up Mark Wilson of Framiac Software. framiac.com
ART BUSINESS TODAY
Another coup for Wessex Pictures
A collaboration between artist and framer PAUL RAYMOND Gregory’s latest work, a triptych in oils entitled The Falls of Esgalduin, is displayed in a hand-carved frame designed by the artist and created by the master framers at John Davies Framers. The artwork, which is inspired by Tolkien’s The Silmarillion, measures an imposing 144x84”. The triptych is currently hanging in Paul’s studio and will be exhibited later this year. studio54.co.uk
PermaJet pulls in the crowds 250 GUESTS visited PermaJet’s Stratford-upon-Avon HQ for their open day, which boasted live models and studio shoots, as well as demonstrations on a range of photographic and printing equipment. The Fine Art Trade Guild’s Kasia Szkolnicka was there, ‘There was a great atmosphere and the showroom was packed with photographers and retailers who clearly valued the chance to talk to their suppliers face-to-face and test-drive equipment. Everyone enjoyed the wine and mince pies and exhibitors including Wessex Pictures and Wacom were very busy.’ A video of the event, entitled PermaJet 2013 Open Day Video, can be viewed on YouTube permajet.com
ART BUSINESS TODAY
FRAMING SUPPLIER Wessex Pictures is now the sole UK distributor for all Hot Press mounting and laminating equipment and consumables. ‘We are very pleased to be partners with Hot Press and we promise to provide fantastic service to our customers,’ says Wessex MD Ashley Younger. ‘We offer weekly delivery via our fleet of 28 vehicles or next-day delivery via a national courier.’ ‘All of Wessex Pictures’ branches have fully trained staff able to demonstrate Hot Press equipment and offer back-up over the telephone,’ explains northern area manager and A ‘Hot Press at Wessex’ catalogue mounting and is available laminating expert Steve Goodall. ‘We offer machines for every budget, from £150 manual options up to vacuum presses, as well as the full range of laminates, films and boards. Importantly, we are able to offer Hot Press products at lower prices than before.’ Wessex will be running 12 or more free training sessions on mounting and laminating this year, led by Steve Goodall. There will be at least two sessions at each of Wessex Pictures’ six regional depots. Framers should call their local branch for dates and details. There will be demonstrations on Hot Press equipment throughout Spring Fair International; visit the Wessex Pictures stand (Hall 4, Stand D70/E71). wessexpictures.com January 2014 11
Wildlife: the raw and the real ANIMAL ARTIST Paul Tavernor is celebrating the fact that his hand-made and signed greeting cards are now available from National Trust shops across the north west. 2013 was a successful year for the self-taught painter. He was a finalist for the BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year award and his summer and autumn collections sold well via five exhibitions. Paul, who is known for his oil paintings that capture the beauty of animals in the wild, explains his inspiration, ‘I want to recreate the secretive look animals fleetingly give and show them in their natural environment, along with wind, rain and snow. I am inspired by the raw and real.’ In December, Paul travelled to the north of Finland and into the Arctic Circle, ‘This visit to one of the earth’s last true wildernesses afforded me a glimpse of another world and an echo from our past, which my canvases will reflect in the months to come.’ paultavernor.co.uk
Paul with Tala, his Czech wolf dog
12 January 2014
New distribution centre for Innova DIGITAL MEDIA specialist Innova Art has opened a new international distribution centre in Andover, Hampshire. Southern Converters has become the central distribution point for all Innova Art products, including fine art papers and canvases. All stock has now moved from the old Essex facilities to Southern Converters’ 54,000 square foot warehouse. Mike Gonzalez, Innova’s director, comments, ‘It’s great to see all the stock under one roof. We celebrated ten years of Innova last year and this is a sign that we have developed into a more streamlined version of the company, preserving our aims and creating a bright future for us, as well as our associates at Southern Converters.’ innovaart.co.uk
Suppliers visit Europe’s largest museum fair EXPONATEC, EUROPE’S largest museum trade fair, which was held in Germany this winter, attracted 170 exhibitors including 16 from the framing industry. Picture framing consultant Keith Hewitt attended the show, ‘CMC manufacturers Wizard, Valiani and Gunnar all exhibited. There were also moulding companies from Germany, Switzerland and Italy and Crescent showed mountboard. Larson Juhl showed mouldings made at their Czech and French facilities and their subsidiary Conservation by Design showed a range of conservation storage and display materials. The busiest stand was Karthauser Breuer, which was a joint venture with LION Picture Framing Supplies. Continuous demonstrations on the stand pulled in the crowds.’ LION’s Martin Harrold comments, ‘We met lots of existing and new customers with museumquality businesses in Germany and
Valiani’s Nico Valiani (left) with German distributor Armin Mittermeier
neighbouring countries. The museum industry has become extremely business-like about monetising their extensive collections, which can only be good for us.’ Crescent Europe MD Peter Royle adds, ‘The museum community is significantly more demanding than the average framer, so we showcased our very best products including Rag Mat mountboard, Optium acrylic glazing and Crescent tapes and boards. Specialist niche shows help us develop and upsell. We were disappointed by the conservator and museum footfall, but were kept busy by international framing distributors.’ exponatec.com keithhewitt.co.uk
Stephen Finney GCF demonstrates a Keencut mountcutter
ART BUSINESS TODAY
New Italian trade fair launched
Pete’s training days sell out THE FINE Art Trade Guild organised two fully-booked workshops with ABT columnist Pete Bingham GCF, which were held at the Guild’s London HQ. The hands-on sessions focused on applying finishes to mouldings, allowing framers to offer a thoroughly bespoke service and hold minimal stock. Attendees included artists, experienced framers and those wanting to a add a new skill to their portfolio. ‘The training day was great and provided me with a lot of new knowledge,’ comments Susan Key GCF of Key Creation. ‘Now all I need to do is practice a lot, which I feel very inspired to do.’ Artist Karen Hollis attended as she is keen to work with her framer to make frames that fully complement her artwork. email@example.com
IT HAS just been announced that there will be a trade event in Italy this spring. The new event, which is organised by Bologna Fiere in collaboration with FAMA Europe (Frame Accessories Manufacturing Association), will take place from 21 to 22 March in Bologna. This year’s event is marketed as FamaArt Preview, an opportunity to meet world leaders in frame manufacturing. The first fully fledged FamaArt show will take place in Bologna in March 2015. Bologna is the home of the SACA trade fair, which was a highlight of the international art and framing calendar for many years. This fair eventually merged with the Quadrum event, becoming QuadrumSACA, then closed, making way for FrameArt Expo, which took place in Milan or Rome for the last three years. Following the cancellation of FrameArt Expo 2014, the industry has been awaiting an announcement of a new Italian show. firstname.lastname@example.org
Antonio Russo enjoys successful US launch ABT COVER artist Antonio Russo exhibited for the first time in the USA last autumn, taking a stand at Spectrum New York at the Jacob Javits Center. The show went so well that he went on to exhibit at Spectrum Miami, one of the 21 art fairs that make up Miami Art Week, arguably the most important contemporary art event in the world. ‘I had a brilliant week in Miami,’ reports the artist. ‘The feedback from US galleries and collectors was fantastic. I made sales too, so I’ll definitely be back in 2014.’ arussoart.com ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 13
SPRING BRANCH EVENTS: dates for your diary SOUTH WEST BRANCH MASTER Fiona Haddon, Haddon Galleries 01803 313133 21 Feb, 18 Jul NORTH WEST BRANCH MASTER Anne Corless 01253 780734 17 Apr, 24 Jul, 2 Oct, 5 Dec WEST MIDLANDS REGIONAL ORGANISER Louise Hill, Imaging Warehouse 01789 739200 12 Feb, 29 Nov
REPUBLIC OF IRELAND BRANCH MASTER Leszek Wolnik, The Copper House Gallery 353 1 5354332 26 Feb, 28 May LONDON, INC MIDDX & SURREY BRANCH MASTER Paul Webb GCF, Artwork Creations 020 8390 0205 22 Jan, 26 Mar, 24 May, 16 Jul, 24 Sept, 26 Nov
COTSWOLDS REGIONAL ORGANISER Cath Friend GCF, Emerald Frames 07507 774017 25 Feb, 22 Apr, 1 Jul, 16 Sept, 25 Nov EAST MIDLANDS BRANCH MASTER Andy Rossiter GCF, Artisand Framing and Art 01778 394664 19 Mar, 16 Jul, 15 Oct Details of upcoming branch events, reports on past events and information about officers and regions can be found at fineart.co.uk
Guild Artists’ Exhibition: submissions invited
Susan celebrates official recognition SWEDISH FRAMER Susan Key GCF has been awarded a Masters Certificate at Stockholm Town Hall by the Governor of Stockholm, in recognition of her skills as a professional GCF picture framer. keycreation.se Wessex attracts attention THIS WESSEX Pictures lorry, which promotes specialist glass on both sides, has only been on the road for three months, yet driver Darren Minter is inundated with enquiries from fellow motorists wanting to know where they can get specialist glass. ‘Some people photograph the lorry and call us later,’ says MD Ashley Younger, ‘While others just give Darren a shout. We are astonished by the volume of enquiries we are receiving.’ wessexpictures.com
14 January 2014
GUILD MEMBERS are invited to submit up to five works for the Guild Artists’ Exhibition, which takes place on 17 and 18 May during the Art & Framing Convention UK. Sponsored by PermaJet, the show will be held at the Holiday Inn, Elstree, and will be a highlight of the Art & Framing Industry Awards weekend. As well as being seen by the wide range of trade buyers who attend the weekend, the exhibition is open to the public. An online version of the show launches a month in advance. ‘Guests at the convention include many leading publishers and galleries and the event offers a unique networking opportunity supported by social media,’ explains the Guild’s Kasia Szkolnicka. ‘Previous exhibitors have gone on to find new publishers and galleries as a result of having shown their work at this prestigious event.’ The small entry fee can be paid online. Submissions must be emailed to the Guild by 28 March and artwork must be delivered to the venue. Further details and an application form are at: fineart.co.uk
Above: the poster for this year’s exhibition Below: Nigel Hallard and his wife Mary with his artwork
ART BUSINESS TODAY
GCF: two decades of excellence IT IS now 20 years since Roy Rowlands GCF of Hedgehog Art & Framing became the first framer in the world to qualify as a Guild Commended Framer. Since then, over 1200 picture framers from western and eastern Europe, USA and Australasia have benefitted from the business boost that the qualification provides. Before the Fine Art Trade Guild launched GCF there were no impartial endorsements of excellence and professionalism in the industry. The Guild recognised the pressing need for established standards in an age where consumer demands were becoming ever greater, and threats of litigation more likely. 20 years ago framers qualified for the same reasons that they do today:
Guild CEO Louise Hay with Roy Rowlands GCF, the first framer to qualify, cutting a cake to mark ten years of GCF Below: Framers in Russia celebrate their newly acquired GCF qualification
displaying the GCF logo tells customers that you are a committed professional and gives you the edge over your competitors. In the words of Barry Leveton GCF, who chaired the Framers Committee and oversaw the launch, ‘The aim of the scheme is to distinguish the skilled from the semiskilled and to enable professional framers to advertise their expertise.’ It quickly became apparent that a manual was required and the GCF Study Guide was published in time for Spring Fair 1995. Now an essential training tool across the industry, it has been revised and updated several times. Since the industry celebrated the first decade of GCF exams, three advanced modules have been launched. Framers can now acquire advanced accreditation in conservation framing, mount design and function and textile framing. The Guild will be celebrating 20 years of GCF throughout 2014, so look out for special offers and news on the website and in Art Business Today. fineart.co.uk
New artists’ cards from PermaJet
Trish takes on northern territory for Mainline
PERMAJET HAS launched ranges of postcards and greeting cards for artists. The 6x4” postcards have a photo smooth front ready for printing, with a postcard printed format on the reverse, which can be over-printed or handwritten. PermaJet provide free templates for those who wish to print on the reverse. The cards are priced at £12.95 for a pack of 25. The greeting cards follow a similar format, with a luxurious ultra smooth fine art front, and a reverse that is suitable for either printing or writing. Greeting cards come with envelopes and clear selfadhesive presentation bags. They are available as A4 folded to A5, at £29.95 for 25, or A5 folded to A6, at £32.95 for 50. permajet.com
MAINLINE ARE pleased to announce the appointment of Trish Montgomery as their sales agent covering the north England and north Wales. Trish has many years’ experience in the industry and is particularly keen to introduce customers to Mainline’s website ordering system, ‘The website saves framers so much time and the new Frame Visualiser is simply amazing,’ she says. Contact Trish on 07812 050353 or email@example.com
ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 15
CxD celebrates double anniversary AS PART of its own 21st birthday celebrations, Conservation by Design has created 100 archive boxes to mark the centenary of the Bedfordshire & Luton Archives & Records Service. The embossed boxes are made of high quality materials and are designed to store newspapers, documents, artifacts and photographs. The Bedfordshire Record Office, as it was known, was the first county record office in England. conservation-by-design.co.uk
Marialuisa Marino remembers Nelson Mandela SOUTH AFRICAN artist Marialuisa Marino created two posters which were in the private collection of the late Nelson Mandela, and which were presented to him during his state visit to the UK in 1996. A few thousand copies of these posters where distributed outside the South African High Commission in London, many of which were signed by the artist. marialuisamarino.com
Jan and Len Brook at the 2013 awards event
Daler Rowney’s Tom Hopper presents Laura Wall with the 2013 Up & Coming Published Artist award
Don’t miss out on the Art & Framing Convention 2014 PUT THE weekend of 17 and 18 May in your 2014 diaries, as this is the Art & Framing Convention UK, the Fine Art Trade Guild’s celebration of the industry. This year the event takes place once again at the Holiday Inn Elstree, a venue guests enjoyed two years ago and which is located within easy reach of the M25 and M1 motorways. Visitors can enjoy the Guild Artists’ Exhibition and study the expertise demonstrated in the shortlisted frames for this year’s framing awards. There will also be a mini trade event, seminars, the Guild AGM, a business forum and the fabulous Art & Framing Awards Dinner takes place on Saturday night. Guild CEO Louise Hay explains why you should get involved, ‘The weekend offers an unmatched opportunity to network with friends and colleagues in the industry. Guests can learn from our educational opportunities, share ideas, be entertained and meet new people.’ It is now possible to enter the awards by downloading application forms from the Guild website. There are ten categories, with awards for framers, retailers, publishers and innovators. Trade suppliers, publishers and artists are invited to book tables at the mini trade event. Starting at just £150, this is a cost-effective way of getting your products in front of an audience of interested professionals. Tickts for the weekend are £153 for a single or £224 for a double, which includes dinner, B&B and a weekend pass for the seminars. If you can’t make the whole weekend, dinner is £45 a head and individual seminars start at £5 for Guild members. The event would not be possible without the generous support of the sponsors. This year sponsors include Arqadia, Besso Limited, Daler Rowney, e-mango, i2i Events, Framers Corner, PermaJet, Valiani and Wizard. fineart.co.uk
Re-vamped website for Fringe Arts
Marialuisa Marino with her artwork and F W de Klerk, president of South Africa from 1989 until 1994
FRINGEARTS.CO.UK, THE website of leading framing trainer and author Lyn Hall GCF Adv, has been re-launched with a clean modern design and a stunning slideshow of inspiring frames. As well as information about framing and training, the site includes an online shop where visitors can buy original artwork in creatively cut mounts. One of the framing projects that is fringearts.co.uk showcased on the new website
16 January 2014
ART BUSINESS TODAY
LifeSaver celebrates two decades US FRAMING software company LifeSaver is launching a special offer in the UK to celebrate 20 years in business. Framers can download a 30-day trial and buy the software at a discounted price. LifeSaver’s highlights include automatic updates of suppliers’ prices, allowing framers to price and sell their work accurately. ‘Framers can create consistent prices,’ explains MD and co-founder Eric Crowe, ‘because they are not using outdated price charts and guesswork. This of course leads to better profit margins. Users can also set mark-ups for labour, materials and extras, so nothing is omitted from their final price. Our aim is to help framers get organised, balance budgets, control spending and debt, and be profitable.’ lifesaversoft.co.uk
New Mat Designer software for Wizard CMCs NEW UPDATED software is released for the Wizard computerised mountcutter, which is available in the UK from Framers Corner. Wizard Mat Designer 6.1 software includes more features and tools, as well as a variety of small ‘wish list’ features that customers have requested. Framers Corner’s Sam Cook comments, ‘Wizard have always been well known for their simple userfriendly software, and this latest edition is another great development of their product. Wizard always provide free software upgrades to customers and even those with older machines can use this latest version.’ See the machine in action at the Spring Fair, Hall 4, Stand D81. framers corner.co.uk
Hints, tips and networking at Making Pictures Manchester A WIDE range of framers, gallery owners and artists gathered at Manchester’s Contact Theatre for the recent Making Pictures event. Demonstrations and talks included PermaJet’s Ian Windembank on calibrating your monitor; Anne Corless on PR for artists; Steven Lord of Harrison Lord on running a gallery and Peter Drought provided hints for photographers. Exhibitors included Wessex Pictures and LifeSaver Software and the evening was made possible by the generous sponsorship of PermaJet. ‘I enjoyed the evening and definitely found it beneficial as I set out on my journey into picture framing,’ says start-up framer Jonathan Hodson. Framer Steve Brayshaw also had a good evening, ‘I enjoyed the networking opportunities Making Pictures presented. It is ART BUSINESS TODAY
always good to meet up with your peers and find out what’s hot and what’s not in the world of framing. I met some lovely people with outstanding skills; there was excellent art and photos on show. Pete Bingham’s demo was particularly good.’ Stephen Millership echos these views, ‘I PermaJet’s Ian Windebank (above) really enjoyed the and Pete Bingham GCF night and found wow the crowds PermaJet’s talk on calibrating monitors very interesting. I was captivated by Pete Bingham’s techniques and presentations; he used paints and varnishes to create an amazing array of effects.’ fineart.co.uk January 2014 17
US version of LION catalogue published LION PICTURE Framing Supplies are pleased to announce that a US version of their famous catalogue is now available. LION has formed a partnership with established distributor Tech Mark Inc of Little Rock, Arkansas, which means that many of their products will now be available to framers, galleries and photo labs in the USA, Canada and Mexico. The catalogue will be launched at the West Coast Art & Frame Show in Las Vegas, where LION and Tech Mark are sharing a stand. Both LION and Tech Mark are family-run businesses. LION was founded in 1977 by Martin and Margaret Harrold, and their daughter Nicola now works with them as Marketing Director. Tech Mark, founded in 1982 by Les and Hertha Moriconi, is a supplier of machinery and accessories including the Morsø. LION MD Martin Harrold says, ‘We’ve received enquiries from US framers for years, but until now delivery has not been easy. We are delighted to be working with Tech Mark and we’ve put together a special version of our catalogue for them.’ lionpic.co.uk tech-mark.com
News from the AAA
Lis and Dave Price GCF, Pricelis Art, have produced a range of limited edition giclée prints for award-winning cartoonist and illustrator Mike Payne (centre). Mike, the creator of Me to You Tatty Teddy, has since used his artistic talent to create Love Teddies and other collections. mikepaynestudio.com pricelisart.co.uk
THE ASSOCIATION of Animal Artists has announced the winners of its annual art competition, which was judged by BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year 2011, Stella Mays. The prizes were presented at the annual dinner, which was held in aid of the Martin Mere Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust. The Best in Show award went to Gregory Wellman for his pastel picture of flamingos, which was inspired by his travels in Africa. Dorothy Miller has been elected as chair of the AAA. ‘I am a founder member and have held the post of treasurer and more recently, secretary. My background is in business; my husband Mike, also a founder member, is the artist,’ explains Dorothy. associationofanimalartists.co.uk Stella Mays with Best in Show artist Gregory Wellman
Selective launches new type of print SELECTIVE PRINTS have launched Artist Individuated Editions™, which represents a new approach to the world of limited edition prints. Working with artist Margaret Hughlock, the company has created a range of hand-embellished and finished prints. ‘Every copy is not just a slight variant on a print, but truly unique,’ explains Selective MD Andrew Whyte. ‘Artists often sketch remarques or hand-paint details, but any two prints from our editions show minimal similarity.’ Editions are limited to 30 copies and retail prices are around £200. Prints will be offered to galleries on a first-come, first-served basis. selectiveprints.co.uk 18 January 2014
ART BUSINESS TODAY
Comment If customer service is king, how do you manage unfair complaints?
Craft Inc runs on 100% renewable energy US PICTURE framing hardware manufacturer Craft Inc has finished installing solar panels on their roof, so they are now manufacturing their products using 100 per cent renewable energy. The SolarWorks installation is a three-part system consisting of a solar rooftop, a solar carport and a solar awning. These custom engineered features will provide all of the company’s electricity, and in a worst-case weather scenario they will provide about 90 per cent. craft-inc.com Hahnemühle wins Paper Manufacturer of the Year THE PIXEL Trade Awards Paper Manufacturer of the Year accolade has been scooped by Hahnemühle. These awards allow companies in the photographic and imaging world to earn the praise of their competitors and recognise high achievements in the industry. General manager Simon Waller comments, ‘As an artist paper manufacturer we are delighted to be awarded this trophy and are highly motivated to continue providing the best fine art inkjet paper in the industry.’ hahnemuehle.com General manager Simon Waller accepts the trophy
ART BUSINESS TODAY
allery owners face dozens of decisions every day. From what to stock, how to display it, selecting insurance and sorting staff rotas. For us, by far the most taxing conundrum is how to manage customer complaints. We often find ourselves wondering if the customer really is always right. A quick glance at some of the UK’s most successful businesses is a lesson in how customer service can be integral to a brand. Walk into John Lewis, enjoy spacious aisles and luxurious displays, and expect friendly, efficient service. Visit Poundland, find a bargain amid the heaving shelves, queue to pay and enjoy little more than a smile on your way out. The point is, we know what to look for in our experiences as customers and want a higher level of service when buying high quality goods. Independent traders must offer exemplary customer service. It is one of our biggest trump cards over large high street chains where standards can slip. The relationship we create with customers is our biggest selling point; by affording each framing job a decent consultation and each art sale or greeting card customer a friendly chat, we secure their future custom. However, once we are trading on our relationships with people, how do we deal with their complaints? An example. A couple came in armed with a till receipt and a damaged purchase. They had bought a £15 hand-made mug and were unhappy that after six months, it was chipped. They asked for their money back. What to do? This is an item intended for everyday use, which should stand up to regular turns in the dishwasher and the odd clink on the table. But with no knowledge of how they had used (or perhaps abused) this item, we refused the refund. The couple were incensed. No doubt they won’t be back. Recently a new customer brought in a piece to be framed. We spent over an hour pouring over carpet, curtain and paint samples and carefully selecting the right moulding. They telephoned an hour after collecting the frame, unhappy about how it looked on their wall. They asked for it to be It’s hard to know how to framed again, free of charge. respond when a bespoke Privately gobsmacked at the item disappoints, but we request, we took some time to successfully turned a £50 loss think. How to respond when a bespoke item disappoints? Well, into a £2000 profit we decided to take the long view: this person was potentially a high value customer. By preserving our relationship with them we turned a £50 loss into a £2000 profit. The overwhelming feeling among friends is that the customer is not always right. But sometimes the savviest response is not to tell them so. A disgruntled customer can do a lot of damage in a small town like Swanage, so it’s best to radiate generosity, give people the benefit of the doubt and enjoy the good press that follows. Emma Bell is a director of The Mulberry Tree Gallery January 2014 19
I A correctly calibrated monitor is essential, so bring on a strange little creature called ColorMunki
Printing expert LESZEK WOLNIK focuses on fidelity to the original and print quality
’ve been making photographic and fine art prints for 40 years. I’m currently focusing on making editions from original artwork, as well as developing new techniques for mounting archival pigment prints. The interesting part of being a printer, be it as an artist making the occasional print or a fine art print house producing hundreds of images a day, is that we all face the same challenges and intense satisfaction when we succeed. While composing this column I was struck by the thought, ‘What, precisely, do we mean by ‘the best quality print possible’?’ We currently have no benchmark for the quality of a print in terms of fidelity to the original artwork and visual appearance. Do we define these features by resolution, tonal values or hue? How do we measure our ability to make an excellent print? The Fine Art Trade Guild’s print standards provide invaluable guidelines, but these are concerned with paper and ink quality, rather than the inherent skill and quality of the origination and print process. I’d like to establish a practical benchmarking initiative. This will involve circulating artwork to any printers wishing to participate, who will then create digital files, so we can assess how good a facsimile can be made. Secondly, I’d like to circulate a set of digital files to see how good a
Guild CEO Louise Hay urges readers to take advantage of what’s on offer at Spring Fair International
20 January 2014
print we can all make from the same files. This exercise should yield a set of benchmarks, files and proof prints. The prints will be a valuable tool: anyone uncertain about printing or origination can request a proof print to compare to their own print. These proofs will be made from the test file which will be available as a download. There are some basics that must be put in place. A correctly calibrated monitor is essential (not a laptop which is unable to display the colours with sufficient accuracy). A copy of Photoshop is required, along with a device for monitor calibration and profile making. I know many will throw their hands in the air with horror at the expense, but the outlay is essential and will repay itself many times over. There isn’t room in this column for the depth of discussion and information needed so I’ve posted a link to more information for folk to explore and enjoy: http://copperhouse.m8.artlogic.net/usr/ library/documents/main/column1.pdf This month’s link covers monitors, calibration, ambient conditions and a strange little creature called the ColorMunki. I’m looking forward to spending the next year as your ‘printer columnist’ and learning more about our shared passion for printing. Leszek Wolnik is curator and strategist at The Copper House Gallery, Dublin
here’s an exciting educational programme in place at this year’s Spring Fair, with training sessions for artists, retailers, art publishers and picture framers. All the seminars are free, with just a nominal £5 charge for demonstrations that are limited to just 12 trainees. Admission to the fair is free too, including parking, so register at springfair.com today. As well as dedicated training sessions there will be invaluable demonstrations on exhibitors’ stands too. Wessex Pictures, LION Picture Framing Supplies and D&J Simons
ART BUSINESS TODAY
Comment Artist Alan Reed provides tips on making the most of trade shows and art fairs
’ve attended many trade shows, exhibitions, business expos and craft fairs, both as an exhibitor and as a visitor, throughout my 29 years as a full-time artist. These events can be immensely costly in terms of time, money, resources and energy, particularly if you are exhibiting. It’s worth spending a few hours before you go clarifying your aims and expectations. Set Take merchandise in a range of price brackets to shows, from greeting cards to original paintings
out clear, achievable goals. If you don’t, then you will find it difficult to evaluate the effectiveness and value of the event to your business. Here are a few tips to help you get the most from the forthcoming Spring Fair, whether you are an exhibitor looking for new trade buyers and distributers, or an artist hoping to meet gallery owners and publishers.
will all have experts on hand demonstrating new products and equipment. Visitors can look at publishers’ new collections, meet independent artists and compare equipment such as computerised mountcutters, or frame pricing and gallery management software. No other event in the art and framing calendar offers so many opportunities under one roof. Look at our dedicated Spring Fair preview section, which starts on page 26, for more information. There are more details on our website, fineart.co.uk, and at springfair.com.
ART BUSINESS TODAY
Trade shows and fairs are as much about PR as taking orders. You may not recoup all your costs during the fair, but if you meet a new client who orders regularly over the next five to ten years, then it was a good show. Maintaining relationships with existing customers is also essential. People buy from people, so use the show to spend quality time with clients, perhaps sharing a drink or evening meal after the fair closes. Contact existing and potential customers before the show, either with a personal phone call or email, or a general newsletter. Use social media to promote your presence at the fair. Interact with galleries, retailers, framers and artists on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook, posting photos of new artwork and products. Blog about the event: inform customers who you are, what you do and why they should visit your stand. Give them a reason to visit, perhaps a free promotional print or a discount on any orders placed at the show. Make sure your stand looks clean and simple, rather than cluttered, and feature merchandise with a wide price range. Include inexpensive, mid-way and higher priced products to attract a broad cross section of customers. Don’t create barriers that could make it difficult or intimidating for buyers to walk on to your stand. Well lit paintings invite folk to take a closer look.
Remember the right paperwork, such as order books, catalogues, business cards and notebooks. Record all the day’s events, conversations and feedback; this will help you evaluate the event afterwards. Staff should be well briefed about your goals and expectations and should be knowledgeable about your products. Don’t eat on the stand. You can’t show everything, so take a laptop or tablet to showcase your website and to bring up your social media pages. Follow up leads and contact everyone you met at the show. Social media is great for following up. Use your blog and newsletter to tell people what the show was like. Remember, not all interested parties will have attended. If you are an artist, remember that trade shows are generally not the right time to visit stands with your portfolio. Exhibitors are looking to sell, no matter how talented you are. Instead, use the occasion to see which galleries or publishers are busy and assess current trends.
I look forward to seeing as many of our readers as possible at the show. Be sure to visit the Guild on Stand D120 in Hall 4, just by the seminar theatre, to browse through our specialist publications and meet our staff. A taster of what will be available at Spring Fair International. Clockwise from top: equipment demonstrations on D&J Simons’ stand; printing and stretching on Fujifilm’s stand; seminars presented by experts including Mal Reynolds GCF Adv
January 2014 21
KAREN HOLLIS ‘I was itching to get back to working with tactile materials, after years spent designing on a computer’ Have you always been an artist? Following a degree in graphic design I worked at creating on-screen graphics for the BBC at Pebble Mill. I worked in video and animation graphics for many years and still take on design work, which complements my work as an artist and ensures that I continue to push my creative boundaries. The contraction of corporate budgets following the 2007 recession came at a time when I was itching to get back to working with tactile materials, rather than on a computer. So when some of my workload declined, instead of taking on more design work, I focused on painting. Why flowers? We live surrounded by flowers and seldom really take in the way they’re made. I want to capture the shapes and colours created when light falls across petals; the essence of the flower, not just the detail. It’s a challenge that I feel very passionate about. How did you start selling? Like most artists, I began by selling to friends and family. The next step was to set up a brand identity and website which enabled me to go public with my art. My first event was the Reading Contemporary Art Fair. I learnt so much from that first exhibition: always give people a leaflet to take away; collect contact emails; include a range of products at different price points; and remember you are there to market your brand as well as to make sales. Shows are an opportunity to talk about your inspiration and techniques, to present yourself as a personality people will remember. The website is only one route to market and is often more about information than sales. There aren’t enough hours in the day to properly market my site. How do you market your work? I spend at least half an hour every day 22 January 2014
blogging and updating Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. A prominent presence on social networking sites makes it easy for people to find you and is a way of building an audience. I am pleased to support charities by creating art for events like Elephant Parade and The Big Egg Hunt; it’s also good for an artist’s profile and a great chance to get out and meet people. I have exhibited at Spring Fair International three times, so I’m having a break this year and attending as a visitor. I’ve sold prints to gallery owners I met at the fair, and it’s a great way of getting into new markets. Licensees and manufacturers from all sectors of the gift and homewares industries attend Spring Fair. What about licensing? I’ve licensed a few images and am currently in talks with further licensees. At Spring Fair 2014 a new client will be launching my designs on homeware products. Many of my prints are limited editions, which means I can’t license them. Some customers value limited editions, so it’s worth producing them, but open editions present a more
flexible business opportunity. I have just created a range of greeting cards. There is a huge cost outlay to producing 3D merchandise such as mugs and aprons. Not to mention the cost of storage and despatch and the hassle of quality control. Eventually I may develop sufficient understanding of what the market wants to go it alone, but at the moment I’m happy to license my artwork. Who handles framing and printing? I’d rather be creating artwork than printing, so I outsource this to a Fine Art Trade Guild printer. My prints are all on paper as this enables me to personally emboss my logo next to my signature. I believe it’s essential that your work is photographed or scanned by a professional, as your prints will only be as good as the digital file from which they were made. I prefer photography, as it’s possible to play with the lighting and how it impacts on the uneven surface of oil paintings. My photographer, Tony Gilbert, works with my printer, so I know that their colour set-ups are compatible. I use two styles of frames for my prints so that I have two price points: simple white frames, which I buy ready-made, and beautiful silvery gold wood frames which are produced by a professional framer. For my original paintings I am learning how to hand finish frames, so I can match the frame to the image . ■ artinbloom.co.uk See Karen’s images on pages 30 & 33
Spring Fair International is the UK’s largest trade show for homewares and gifts, with around 3000 exhibitors. The event is broken down into 13 dedicated sectors, each with exhibitors including both major brands and boutique makers. Sectors include Kitchen, Dining & Homewares; Body & Bath; Greetings & Stationery; and Gifts. A staggering 300,000 new products will be unveiled, ensuring Spring Fair’s place as the ultimate destination and inspirational sourcing ground for retailers. The show encompassess a range of features and training opportunities. These include the Cook Live! demonstration area, the Gift Box demonstration area, the e-commerce zone, the Licensing Lounge and the Trend Briefing Theatre. See what’s on in the Art & Framing Seminar Theatre, which is sponsored by the Fine Art Trade Guild, overleaf.
Admission Entry to the show is free to those who pre-register online. This is a trade-only event Opening times Sat 1 Feb, volume only, 10.00-17.00 Sun 2 - Wed 5 Feb, 9.00-18.00 Thur 6 Feb, 9.00-16.00 Visitor enquiries +44 (0) 844 588 8071 firstname.lastname@example.org, springfair.com Organiser i2i Events Group, i2ieventsgroup.com
GETTING THERE By road The NEC is eight miles east of Birmingham city centre at the hub of the UK motorway network. If using sat nav, use the postcode B40 1NT then follow the signs to the free carpark By train Birmingham International station is located within the NEC. For timetables and tickets visit thetrainline.com
By air Birmingham International Airport is located within the NEC
ART & FRAMING Hall 4 is home to the Art & Framing sector, as well as Greetings & Stationery. Within Art & Framing visitors will find original art, limited edition prints, framed prints, frames, framing equipment and framing materials. Exhibitors range from independent artists to large framing suppliers. Visitors can stock up on unique artwork that won’t be seen all over the high street, and they can test drive framing machinery and equipment. They can also talk to suppliers, study art and materials up close, and benefit from a range of educational opportunities. Located in the middle of Art & Framing is the education theatre, where there will be a range of seminars and demonstrations.
ART & FRAMING EXHIBITORS Exhibitors listed here are in Hall 4 unless otherwise stated Alpha 1 Marketing, D86 Aquarelle Publishing, C78 Art Business Today, D120 The Art Group, E70/F71 Art Marketing, Hall 9, C11/D10 Art of Hannah Jean, B101 Balla Ban Art Gallery, B90 Buckingham Fine Art, B77/B78 Chantry Fine Art, C74/C75 Claire Botterill, B99 Collier & Dobson, D80/E81 Daryl Davies Fine Art, D71 Edytaart, D100/E101 Fine Art Trade Guild, D120 Framers Corner, D81 Framiac, B80 Frederick Phillips Art, B89 Frinton Mouldings, D70/E71
Fujifilm UK, A76 Gary Simmons Artist, B97 GB eye, D50/E51 Great Pictures, E109 Gunnar Weissenberger, D90 Heartbreak Publishing, E91 Hearts Designs, H137 Igma Imaging, A70 Illumino Images, E113 James Bartholomew, D91 James Wheeler (Artist), B85 Jill Ray Landscapes, B93 KC Glass, B84 Kedar Arts & Crafts Nepal, B74 Kerry Darlington, D78/E79 Key Manifesto, E106 LION Picture Framing Supplies, D85 Mark Lodge, A84 McDonald Ralph Fine Art, D79 Mezart, E117 Newcomers’ Gallery, B70 Nick Dillon Art, D111 Odua African Art Studio, B98
Pyramid International, E70/F71 The Ready Made Picture Frame Company, C71 Selwyn’s by Jack Sayers Products, B71 Shangai Intco Industries, A74 D&J Simons, C80/C81 Tom Morgan Pictures, C79 Unsnap Photography, B91 Valiani, C80/C81 Wessex Pictures, D70/E71 Yvonne Coomber Prints, B105
Buckingham Fine Art (Hall 4, B77/78)
Wessex Pictures (Hall 4, D70/E71)
Post urban glam artist Lhouette launches the Abandoned Cinema collection at Spring Fair International. ‘The work features starkly contrasting visuals, which convey the forgotten opulence surrounding theatre during the 1930s and 40s. This is juxtaposed onto distressed and discarded wooden pallets, which evokes a feeling of dereliction, whilst at the same time touching on beauty and glamour,’ explains the artist, speaking from his Buckinghamshire studio. ‘I use icons from a forgotten era, rather then exhausted pop icons,’ he adds. 01908 658830 bucksfineart.co.uk
There will be demonstrations and special offers throughout the show. Customers who buy any five-pack of mouldings will receive the lowest priced pack free of charge. If you buy one pack of Tru Vue specialist glass, you will get the second at half price. There’s ten per cent off all machinery, including Hot Press show offers. Wessex have just been appointed exclusive distributor for Hot Press in the UK and Ireland, so there are many special show offers on Hot Press equipment. For example, a HGP260 vacuum press is £2965, which includes a free starter pack worth over £400. The HGP360 model is £4075, with a free starter pack worth over £530. The ML25 Jetmounter manual laminator is £300, with a starter pack worth £145; the JM26 motorised laminator is £575, including a £159 starter pack; and the JM34 model is £655 with a starter pack worth over £210. Visitors can also pick up a free ‘Hot Press at Wessex’ catalogue. 01590 681681 wessexpictures.com
LION Picture Framing (Hall 4, D85) LION will be showing products from three new catalogues. From the milestone LION catalogue 50 will be the unique MW Hanger for safely hanging pictures, signs and mirrors on tiled walls. Equipment on demo includes the new Pozzi PG MiniQuick 3 for self-fix hardware, and the Minigraf MC Configurable Underpinner. You’ll also see the Hoffmann Corner Routing & Joining System and INMES IM30 Single Mitre Saw. SeaLion Cold and Hot Mounting & Laminating materials will be in use. From LION 50S will be a display of picture hanging systems from Stas and Newly. There’ll be eight brand new ranges of wood mouldings and 22 new ranges of wood, Minerva polymer and aluminium mouldings introduced in LION Mouldings Edition 15. You’ll be able to chat to the sales team and order sample chevrons for your display. 0121 773 1230 lionpic.co.uk 28 January 2014
Framiac Software (Hall 4, B80) If you’re a framer looking to save time and money, as well as boost profitability, Framiac offers the solution. For businesses big or small, Framiac FramR will help you understand your true costs, while providing dynamic tools to assist with the smooth running of your business. At the core of Framiac FramR is its unique pricing system which calculates every labour task into the price, giving the true cost of making a frame, and allowing a realistic and considered mark-up to be applied. There are no funny price jumps or irregularities ensuring you’re pricing consistently and fairly to your customers. FramR allows you to: price consistently and accurately; monitor paymernts and cashflow; manage customers and jobs; save time and monitor work loads; promote your business to customers; manage stock and reduce over-spending. A free trial can be downloaded from the website. 0117 904 7153 07938 508 343 framiac.com ART BUSINESS TODAY
ART & FRAMING TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES SUNDAY 2ND FEBRUARY 11am-12.30pm (demo) Mounting limited editions Presented by Jan Stanlick GCF and Peter Stanlick of Framers Equipment 11am-12noon (seminar) Selling specialist glazing Presented by US framer, trainer and author Rob Markoff CPF 12.30pm-1.30pm (seminar) Pricing for profit Presented by Mark Wilson, framer and MD of Framiac UK 1pm-2pm (demo) Developing your competitive edge Rob Markoff CPF explains how to maximise profitability 2pm-3pm (seminar) Licensing artwork Guidelines for artists on negotiating with licensees 2.30pm-4pm (demo) Framing sports shirts Presented by Martin Tracy GCF and Ian Tittman GCF, Framing Workshop 3.30pm-4.30pm (seminar) Mounting and laminating Presented by Jan Stanlick GCF and Stuart Mahon of Framers Equipment
MONDAY 3RD FEBRUARY 11am-12.30pm (demo) Framing sports shirts Presented by Martin Tracy GCF and Ian Tittman GCF, Framing Workshop 11am-12noon (seminar) ArtSure: a new Guild programme Martin Harrold introduces the quality assurance scheme for inkjet prints 12.30pm-1.30pm (seminar) Corporate art and framing sales Presented by US framer, trainer and author Rob Markoff CPF 1pm-2pm (demo) Social marketing A focus on promoting your business via social networking sites 2pm-3pm (seminar) How to price and value art Artist Colin Ruffell offers advice to artists on pricing and promoting art 2.30pm-4pm (demo) Pushing your CMC to the limit David Wilkie GCF provides technical advice and inspiration 3.30pm-4.30pm (seminar) Selling specialist glazing Presented by US framer, trainer and author Rob Markoff CPF
FURTHER DETAILS The art and framing seminar theatre is located in the centre of Hall 4. Visit the Fine Art Trade Guild’s website for more information about speakers and content, fineart.co.uk Register at springfair.com for free entry to the show; visitors must register for the show as well as the training sessions they wish to attend. ART BUSINESS TODAY
TUESDAY 4TH FEBRUARY 11am-12.30pm (demo) Framing 3D artifacts Mal Reynolds GCF Adv explains how to attach and present 3D objects 11am-12noon (seminar) How to price and value art Artist Colin Ruffell offers advice to artists on pricing and promoting art 12.30pm-1.30pm (seminar) Pricing for profit Presented by Mark Wilson, framer and MD of Framiac UK 1pm-2pm (demo) Developing your competitive edge Rob Markoff CPF explains how to maximise profitability 2pm-3pm (seminar) Getting digital printing right Hints, tips and tricks of the trade from PermaJet’s Ian Windebank 2.30pm-4pm (demo) Lacing fabrics Mal Reynolds GCF Adv explains how to support and present textile art 3.30pm-4.30pm (seminar) Corporate art and framing sales Presented by US framer, trainer and author Rob Markoff CPF
HOW TO BOOK Seminars are free of charge and up to 50 trainees will be admitted.Secure your place by registering at fineart.co.uk Demos are £5 to those who book in advance or £8 on the door. A maximum of 12 trainees will be admitted.To book, visit fineart.co.uk/springfair-seminars-and-workshops2014.aspx January 2014 29
PRODUCT NEWS Arqadia
The new Intermezzo collection by Larson Juhl provides traditional yet contemporary elegance to complement any home interior. Wrapped with cherry veneers and embossed to heighten the uniqueness of the finishes, Intermezzo has a polished wax lustre to bring sophistication to oil paintings or photographic projects. The carefully selected modern shapes ensure that the Intermezzo collection maintains a broad appeal for customers. Intermezzo is currently available in five colour profiles including a mountslip, and can be ordered from £2.99 per metre.
Anna-Marie Bartlett GCF from The Framing Lady has this to say about FramR software: ‘Framiac is easy to use, very accurate, and one of the best features is that you can customise it easily. Creating templates is simple for tasks like needlework, football shirts and frames with spacers and fillets. I like the price breakdown sheet, where I can see my hourly rate applied to the different framing tasks. I can see the actual material and labour costs and also a mark-up for my profit. An updated price list of my favourite suppliers is easily imported into the system and I have confidence when I quote that it is a reasonable and fair price each and every time. No more guessing and inconsistency . . . FramR makes my day!’
01234 852777 arqadia.co.uk
0117 904 7153 07938 508 343 framiac.com
Karen Hollis at Art in Bloom
Richard Young FRSA Original dance and figurative fine art oil paintings, pastels and selfpublished giclée prints. Publisher, gallery, agent representation and exhibition opportunities always welcomed.
Illustrated is Tempestuous, which is available as a print from artist Karen Hollis.
01491 671476 artinbloom.co.uk
07813 138680 ryoung-art.com email@example.com
James Buttifant Life, Love & Penguins! is the title of a collection of three new pieces by James Buttifant, that capture the joy of a new arrival. Life imitates art, as James celebrates the birth of his new son with this latest collection. Illustrated is New Arrival, an edition of 195.
Over the years Keith Melling has painted and sketched Pendle Hill from over 100 different angles, as it is only five minutes away from his studio. 01282 696641 kmelling.com 30 January 2014
Artist: Keith Melling Title: First Snow, Lower Black Moss and Pendle Hill Format: open giclée edition edition in two sizes firstname.lastname@example.org jamesbuttifant.com ART BUSINESS TODAY
To advertise here, call Kasia Szkolnicka on 020 7381 6616 or email: email@example.com Entries are £80 for Guild members, £150 for non-members (+ VAT)
Eli-Chem Resins has launched a revolutionary step forward in pigments for artwork. Eli-Glow is the latest pioneering technology in creating stunning effects that come alive in the dark. These amazing pigments are available in a fine crystal form for easy mixing into Clear Artwork Resins. They can be added to the resin or sprinkled over the surface and sealed in place with a brush. By day the crystals absorb UV light and after dark they release energy in a long-lasting glow. This enables the artist to achieve two very different effects as the light changes. Unlike conventional pigments, Eli-Glow is not a primary light reflector, but is an actual source of light. The available colours are green and aquamarine blue, with more to follow soon. Eli-Glow pigments release light for up to ten hours in darkness and ‘charge up’ in minutes.
Silent of paw and fast of foot, the arctic winds bring ‘Snowy’ the winter hare. Paul’s latest oil painting sold immediately at his winter exhibition, along with every limited edition of this hare. This image is sure to be popular with hare enthusiasts and collectors alike. Title: Snowy Edition size: 250 Image size: 11” (28cm) x 16” (41cm) - approximate Mount size: 18.25” (47cm) x 23.25” (59cm) - approximate Trade price: £60 for the print or £65 mounted and presented ready for resale, inclusive of postage within the UK. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
01483 26 66 36 /37 elichem.co.uk
01663 766568 paultavernor.co.uk
LION Picture Framing
SeaLion cold and hot mounting and laminating materials are superb professional quality at great value trade prices, made for LION in the UK. To help you test SeaLion materials, many are available in 5m test rolls. For a SeaLion samples pack contact email@example.com
2014 is a year to celebrate; a year to celebrate ’40 Years of Innovation.’ 40 years during which Valiani has developed a wide range of mountcutters, including nine CMCs, which have provided custom framers with innovative and intuitive cutting solutions. Valiani is especially proud that a business started in 1974 by Franco Valiani remains a family concern, dedicated to providing an outstanding level of support for its customers. As a means of celebrating this auspicious occasion, managing director Nico Valiani has announced that Valiani will be holding a special promotion at Spring Fair 2014. Valiani are exhibiting with their UK distributor D&J Simons (Hall 4, Stand 4C80/81).
0121 773 1230 lionpic.co.uk
Anne Corless was thrilled when her mixed media zebra painting, ‘A Gentle Touch’ was selected for the Artists for Conservation 2013 ‘International Exhibit of Nature in Art’ which is still on show; http://www.artists forconservation. org/virtualexhibit. This painting is also featured in the AFC’s 2013 hardcover book of the exhibition. ‘To then find out that I had been chosen as the AFC’s ‘Conservation Artist for the month of December 2013’ was beyond my dreams and I am deeply honoured,’ says Anne.
The long painting in support of sustainability by Alex Borissov has received a new impetus with a part of it recently painted in London opposite the Houses of Parliament. To encourage creative thinking about recycling, Alex paints on used cotton hand towel rolls. ‘Sustainability requires the efforts of people beyond national borders. To bring this point to the forefront I have painted parts of the long painting in Austria, Brazil, Italy, Maldives, Sweden, Switzerland, Russia and the UK. The paining is now 1822 metres long and is growing,’ says Alex.
01253 780734 annecorless.com
00 41 79 843 7881 abfile.com firstname.lastname@example.org
ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 31
PRODUCT NEWS Paul Tavernor The distinctive heart-shaped face and white underparts makes the much loved barn owl an iconic image that endures all seasons with a quiet dignity. This latest oil painting from Paul Tavernor offers an extremely low edition to his instantly recognisable countryside collection. Edition size: 150 Image size: 11” (28cm) x 16” (41cm) - approximate Mount size: 18.25” (47cm) x 23.25” (59cm) - approximate Trade price: £60 for the print or £65 mounted and presented ready for resale, inclusive of UK postage
FramR’s easy to use system allows you to focus on your customers and offer quality, consistent service time and time again. Typical settings and preinstalled supplier catalogues make setting FramR up a breeze, allowing you to be pricing within minutes. Framiac has been assisting framers for over 16 years and offers unlimited email or phone support. At the core of Framiac FramR is its unique pricing system which calculates every labour task into the price, giving the true cost of making a frame, and allowing a realistic and considered mark-up to be applied. There are no funny price jumps or irregularities ensuring you’re pricing consistently and fairly to your customers. FramR allows you to: • Price consistently and accurately • Monitor payments and cashflow • Manage customers and jobs • Save time and monitor work loads • Promote your business to customers • Manage stock and reduce over-spending
01663 766568 paultavernor.co.uk
0117 904 7153 07938 508 343 framiac.com
Epson has launched Japanese Kozo Paper Thin, a 34gsm translucent, mulberry-based inkjet paper which features a coating that allows users to achieve high colour density and deep saturation. Despite its fine texture and light weight, the kozo fibres ensure that the paper is strong and durable. Japanese Kozo Paper Thin is ideal for printing Japanesestyle artwork including screens and room dividers. It is suitable for drum-tight finishing on wooden frames and is priced from £66 per 10m roll.
Title: Watcher Format: signed giclée Edition: 95 Image size: 430x300mm RRP (inc VAT): £84
Title: Puffins Format: signed giclée Edition: 395 Image size: 240x170mm RRP (inc VAT): £30
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Life, Love & Penguins! is the title of a collection of three new pieces by James Buttifant, that capture the joy of a new arrival. Life imitates art, as James celebrates the birth of his new son with this latest collection. Illustrated is The Hug, an edition of 195.
One of these posters was owned by the late Nelson Mandela and versions have been exhibited widely in South Africa, England and America. Artist Marialuisa Marino can be contacted at email@example.com, or facebook.com/fantesise or look for her on LinkedIn.
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32 January 2014
ART BUSINESS TODAY
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Life, Love & Penguins! is the title of a collection of three new pieces by James Buttifant, that capture the joy of a new arrival. Life imitates art, as James celebrates the birth of his new son with this latest collection. Illustrated is Our Heart, an edition of 195. email@example.com jamesbuttifant.com
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ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 33
‘The Great Wall of Walcot’ was an amazingly successful PR initiative for The Framing Workshop in Bath. Owner Martin Tracy GCF guides us through the project, from conception to execution, with a view to inspiring other art and framing retailers to launch their own attentiongrabbing promotions
A montage showing some of the carved heads of Walcot Street. The head of Martin Tracy GCF is depicted inside a picture frame (top row, second from right)
Making a splash I
believe that the story I’m about to tell will inspire readers to think way outside their business spaces and their personal comfort zones. I’m not suggesting that others should initiate a project that mirrors this one – the details are unique to my business and location - but hopefully others will see it as a useful case study and a source of inspiration and ideas. Editors, journalists, radio and television presenters want to hear from local businesses with a story to tell. It must be a ‘feel good’ story that was 34 January 2014
experienced by an identifiable organisation. You need to think big, think community, think beyond your shop and be creative, after all, you are working in a creative industry. Look out for quieter press periods, or at least avoid busy ones such as the birth of a royal baby or a major natural disaster. Inspiration The Great Wall of Walcot project began with a light-bulb moment, undoubtedly brought about by a number of conversations with
neighbouring traders who were expressing their frustration with what they considered to be a lack of footfall. Footfall in our street is selective, in that those shops that are thriving are those that have, over the years, developed into destination shops. As the ‘keeper of the keys’ of Walcot Street’s traders’ association, I have to listen to grumbling from those who rarely do anything themselves to generate footfall. The recent opening of a number of cafés and food bars in our street has already brought a ART BUSINESS TODAY
marked increase in potential shoppers; people stop by and become aware of the retail mix we offer. But we need to maximise the number of visitors, so I was casting around for promotional ideas. Walcot Street is about half a mile long; along one side of the central part is a 20’ stone-faced wall that supports a six-floor Georgian terrace that towers over the street. Over 25 years ago a stone mason carved four gargoyle-like stone faces and attached them to the wall. One day I thought, ‘Why not extend this unique feature along this otherwise rather featureless wall? Why not add more stone faces?’ It took me six months to find a cooperative and enormously skilled stone carver who understood my idea and would work to a price we could afford. Ten months later there are 30 faces scattered along the wall – 28 stone, one ceramic and one glass – the odd ones out having been made by other craftspeople on Walcot Street. Selling the idea Each face is sponsored by either a business or a resident who works or
Sponsors pay £200, which covers carving and installing a Bath stone head. Businesses in the street donated products and services
lives on Walcot Street. Our sponsors pay £200 each, which covers the carving and installing of a Bath stone head. I gave my time free of charge and various Walcot Street businesses donated products and services to the project. For example we had 2000 postcards printed featuring the heads, plus flyers which we hand out to interested parties; Meticulous Ink designed these, Minuteman Press printed them, Paul O’Connor took the photographs and my staff ensured that the postcards were available in newsagents and the flyers at the Tourist Information office. Everyone who has made a contribution is
thanked on all marketing material. I began by sending a letter to everyone on the street outlining the concept and promoting the marketing benefits. Much to my surprise and delight, I received four takers within 48 hours. Enough, I thought, to make a start. As faces began to appear on the wall, others were quick to join in and I was able to keep stone mason Pete Bloomfield busy throughout the summer. Pete would carve three heads at a time, installing them in batches as he finished them. It’s worth noting that I handdelivered letters to the 70 businesses on our street, even though I have a comprehensive email database. This meant that if anyone suggested that they hadn’t received my letter, I could personally confirm that a member of their staff had taken it. The residents who joined in tended to approach us once the heads started appearing, though I did put notices in the communal areas of certain buildings. Interestingly, residents have played a significant part in the project. Traders tend to commission a head to reflect the nature of their business,
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January 2014 35
Some of the press coverage achieved by The Great Wall of Walcot, along with a press photograph of Martin Tracy GCF (bottom)
while residents are quick to commission caricatures of themselves. My face is surrounded by a picture frame, while an interior designer’s face is sitting in an armchair. Without exception, all the heads on show are brilliant. We have received nothing but praise for the concept and its execution. I have a good relationship with our local council and they know I’m sensible. We are out of the centre of Bath and we aren’t a street of immense historic interest such as Royal Crescent, so I didn’t anticipate any opposition from the council. As it transpired, no one from the council has been in touch about the project at all. Media attention As hoped, the project generated both a huge amount of press interest, as well as an ever increasing number of visitors who, one way or another, have heard about the display. The response from the local press has been more positive than I could have possibly expected. Our weekly city newspaper, The Bath Chronicle, ran an early story as did both of our city glossy magazines. Several months later we held a launch party, at which we theatrically 36 January 2014
unveiled the faces. I wanted to unveil all the faces at once, but the logistics of supporting a piece of fabric half a mile long were too much for me. In
the end, we covered a group of nine of the heads with a piece of fabric measuring 4x30’, which fell down at the pull of a string. The event was held in the street, which has an open area suitable for such gatherings. We put up tents and gazebos and local cafés sold food, including a hog roast, and there was a cocktail tent. The launch party was a great trader and resident community gathering. Not only did we achieve further press coverage, but BBC Points West interviewed and filmed participants before and during the party. This coverage was broadcast after the national news from 6am until 10pm throughout the following day. Perhaps the very best coverage came from two websites, The Bath Magazine (http://thebath mag.co.uk/the-great-wall-of-walcot) and the Virtual Museum of Bath (www.virtual museumof bath.com/ 2013/08/17). It is now a year since I set out on this project. Were it not for the support of fellow traders and residents, this genuine community effort would not have been the success it was. Our 30 gargoyles continue to bring potential shoppers to the street, fulfilling our initial cry for more ART BUSINESS TODAY
The postcard that was created as a joint effort by a group of Walcot Street businesses and which was available through newsagents and the Tourist Information Centre
footfall. And the project is ongoing; three more heads were delivered before Christmas and five more will follow soon. I won’t pretend that The Great Wall of Walcot has not consumed a massive amount of my time, but I am in no doubt that it has been worth every minute. I have invested time composing and distributing press releases, liaising with sponsors and contributors and generally managing the project. Organising the launch party alone was a mammoth task. But
ART BUSINESS TODAY
The Great Wall of Walcot has consumed a massive amount of my time, but I am in no doubt that it’s been worth every minute
the return in terms of sales, footfall and positive publicity has been immeasurable. There’s no way that a business the size of mine could afford to buy the coverage I achieved. This project is a good example of how everyone benefits from working together. Just the opportunity to network and meet residents at the launch party resulted in trade for local businesses. Walcot Street has developed a reputation as an excellent hub of independent shops which people come to when they want personal service and something a little bit different. Initiatives such as The Great Wall of Walcot emphasise the fact that we are a group of creatively run businesses who are prepared to go the extra mile for our customers. The project has definitely attracted new visitors to the street, and helped ensure that Walcot Street is at the forefront of people’s minds when they are buying products and services. Local customers want to support businesses that ‘give something back’ to the community. ■
January 2014 37
The power of PR The economy may be showing green shoots of recovery, but many people are nervous about spending their hard earned pennies, so framing stores and galleries need to work hard to ensure profitability. It is more important than ever to promote your business to existing and prospective customers, yet cash to fund promotions might be scarce. Don’t worry, there is an effective way to reach out to your customer base without breaking the bank, and that is public relations, or PR. Here, Arqadia’s Pauline Hutchinson takes a closer look at how the power of PR you can help raise awareness, change perceptions, build brands and encourage loyalty, but most importantly, make the most of your business, no matter what size it is
o put it simply, PR is about conveying a positive image of your business to your customers. The value of PR can be seen in the media we read, listen to and watch every day. In any sector, better brand awareness leads to increased sales. Art galleries and framers have products to sell and services to offer and these must be promoted through the local media to attract customers. PR provides a powerful tool to reach your target market. Appearing in your local newspaper can be a great way of raising awareness of what you offer and encouraging people in your area to visit your store. You never know how many people are
sat at home right now wondering how to tackle a potential framing project or art commission; you need to try to be more visible to them. Ensuring you’re featured in the press allows you to speak directly to these people in their environment and on their terms. In this way, you can feed information about your business into the subconscious of the reader – setting you apart from the crowd, and enabling the perception that you are a bigger business than perhaps you may be. You have to remember that people like to deal with people. Direct advertising, while effective, can switch some people off straight away if they don’t feel like they want to be sold to.
Below: A promotional shot for the Brighouse Victorian Christmas festival, featuring local business owners in fancy dress. Steven Lord of Harrison Lord Gallery is at the far right
PR gives you real brand personality and a very public face to which people can identify. This in turn builds an element of trust before any work is even done, and it will certainly keep you front of mind for any potential customers, whether they are aware of it yet or not. PR is not a one size fits-all practice and there are many ways of reaching your audience. Newsletters are a fantastic way of communicating business or service updates to your existing customers in order to encourage repeat purchasing, but to try and entice new people into your store or gallery there are other methods. Think about hosting in-store events or workshops, maybe even with
a third party such as an art teacher or a photographer, as these will encourage footfall into your premises. Going out into the community to build relationships is a must. Look for local fairs or events to get involved in, offer advice clinics, start a pop-up shop, so long as you integrate and get talking to new people on neutral ground. Testimonies from happy customers are a fantastic way of conveying the inherent benefits of your services, and Facebook and Twitter are useful tools here. Your social media pages are shop windows for your business, and used properly they show you in your best light. Think about how you want your customers to perceive you and build a plan around it, so frequent relevant information is sent in a timely way.
Testimonies from happy customers are a fantastic way of conveying the benefits of your business, and Facebook and Twitter are useful tools
Your business should be a tool for PR itself. Have you passed any milestones, achieved any awards, introduced a new service, or completed any interesting or unique projects? If so, tell people about it. Success should be celebrated - it has a wonderful halo effect that reflects well upon your potential customers. If you don’t shout about it, no-one else will. The word ‘new’ makes up most of the term ‘news’. As the old adage goes, last week’s newspapers are this week’s fish and chip wrappers, so don’t delay in getting your stories out there. Secondly, a picture speaks a thousand words. Always try to concoct a visual element that the press can fall in love with. Think bright, think bold, think quirky. The better the image, the greater the likelihood of your story being taken on. PR is often misunderstood, misused or simply missed off the list because people think they lack the knowledge or, more importantly, the funds and resources to use such techniques successfully. You may lack confidence ➺ ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 39
From left: Steven Lord dressed as an RAF pilot as part of the promotional activity for Brighouse’s 1940s weekend; Steven with Yorkshire cricket captain Andrew Gale; Steven being interviewed by Real Radio
when it comes to organising an event or simply don’t have the time to write a press release, but if you don’t get involved you could be throwing away golden opportunities. At Arqadia we are committed to supporting our customers’ businesses by sharing our PR expertise. We have a suite of tools available to give you the support, knowledge, resources and skills you might need to tackle the problem head on and implement your own successful PR programme with minimum hassle. Our PR toolkit includes a calendar packed full of thoughts and ideas on seasonal promotional activity, and our ‘Ask the Expert’ feature allows you to pose queries about marketing your business. PR does not have to be scary. It can
in fact be a fun creative outlet, which has multiple business benefits, and is cost effective too. So don’t be shy of giving it a go, as it might make all the difference to boosting your profit margins in 2014.
CASE STUDY Steven Lord Harrison Lord Gallery
e are extremely keen on PR. We are blessed in the art world as our products are of interest to the general public; if we were in the business of manufacturing engineering components it would be much harder to persuade the media to take an interest. As it is, people love to read about art and artists.
We send out press releases more than once a week. These tend to be written either by Stacey Brewer, a fulltime gallery employee, or myself, or both of us. Media communication is a core part of our promotional strategy. Anything and everything can become a story if you use your imagination. New artists are an obvious one, but the media do tend to like these straightforward stories. We’ve recently achieved coverage with a press release about a commission for a community artwork; a local singer who put out a record about this area and came into the gallery; a framing job for the Yorkshire cricket captain; and a lovely story about framing our postman’s war medals. We are endlessly asking customers if they’ll pose for a photo and allow us to
A heartwarming story about a local postman’s medals being framed attracted extensive media coverage for Harrison Lord Gallery
40 January 2014
ART BUSINESS TODAY
BUSINESS contact the media, and no one says no. I wouldn’t ask to photograph a child, but other than that people are flattered and pleased. The key to a successful press release is a high quality photograph, which is pretty easy in the era of digital cameras. Just ensure that the subject of the press release and the relevant people are in the shot. You need to write the story so that it’s ready to drop straight into the newspaper or website. Media companies are under pressure to cut costs, they all employ less staff then they did five years ago, so you are doing them a favour by supplying them with ready-to-use copy and images. Writing press releases becomes quick and easy with practice; just stick to the facts and include quotes from yourself and the subject of the press release (often a customer or artist). Make sure that you provide captions for the images. Our press releases often appear online or in print word-for-word as we have written them. Avoid flowery language and superfluous adjectives. We send press releases to about five local papers and magazines, local news
websites, plus BBC Radio Leeds and Phoenix FM. Broadcast media tend to call us upon receiving our press release. After a time you become a resource for media companies and they get in touch asking for stories, quotes and opinions. Literally hundreds of articles have been published about us, which is great publicity and the only cost is a bit of effort combined with reasonable writing and photography skills. Myself and a group of local business people (mainly retailers) have set up the Brighouse Local Business Initiative to organise festivals and events to attract people to our town. We held a 1940s weekend last summer which attracted 100,000 visitors; not bad for a town with a population of 30,000. We held our first Victorian festival before Christmas 2013, which included a Christmas market, puppet theatre, street entertainers, historical talks, a lantern parade, a visit by ‘Queen Victoria’ and much more. The festivals are run on a shoestring by volunteers. The key point is that if your town is a success, your business will be a success.
After a time you become a resource for media companies and they get in touch asking for stories, quotes and opinions
If you take a long term view of your business it’s worth working with others to develop the reputation of your town. Brighouse is not picturesque; we are an unattractive exindustrial town, but hard work has turned the town into a tourist destination.’
CASE STUDY Laura Wall, artist focus my day-to-day PR efforts on Facebook, Twitter and my blog, but I send press releases when I have something important to say. Last year I won the Art & Framing Industry Best-selling Up & Coming Artist Award and I was shortlisted for ➺
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BUSINESS ➺ Laura Wall being filmed by the BBC
the People’s Book Prize; I sent out press releases and received extensive coverage with the Western Morning News, the Devon Advertiser, the Express & Echo, the Herald Express, and more. Our local BBC news station covered the Up & Coming Artist Award story, which did wonders for local awareness. I recently made a short video about Goose, a character who features in my work, which has generated a tremendous amount of positive publicity. I host an artists’ hour (#artistshour) on Twitter which has turned into a massive collaboration
and community project. At 9am each Wednesday around 1200 artists, gallery owners and publishers ‘meet’ to ask questions and share ideas; at the beginning of the hour I set artists a technical challenge, and they tweet the resulting artwork 45 minutes later. Myself and a friend started #devonhour, which grew into an incredibly successful marketing tool for me, generating extensive commissions and sales, and #artistshour grew from that. Blogging is a great way of ensuring that certain keywords appear on your website, which helps with search
engine optimisation. For example if I want to push the fact that I paint murals, I blog about mural painting, then if someone Googles ‘mural artist Devon’ my name will come up. It’s essential for artists to work with their galleries to generate PR coverage. Haddon Galleries, which is local, sells my work and holds solo exhibitions; the media like the fact that both artist and gallery are local. It’s important for artists to attend private views and talk to customers; people want to hear the story behind a particular picture and they want to find out about the person who created it.’ ■
CASE STUDY Graham Hunter, The Graham Hunter Gallery and Creative Picture Framing
e have an e-newsletter called Directions that we create inhouse and send to all our media contacts, as well as customers. We also send e-invites to our media contacts. We work hard collecting email addresses and are constantly building our media database. PR is about trying to engage people and reaching out to them in different formats. Old fashioned press releases are a valuable tool, but we also create YouTube videos and podcasts and we use QR codes to provide people with more information about our artists. We are lucky to have an employee, Joseph Brandt, who is a wizard with social media and knows all the latest online trends and features. We made some framing videos this year on a Star Wars theme that involved all our framing staff; we posted them on YouTube
42 January 2014
and the media picked up on them as the idea was memorable and fun. The podcasts provided another reason for people to visit our show and were a topic for media coverage. We recently held an exhibition of photographs of London; each image was accompanied by a QR code that took you to the location of the shot on a map. It was a fun gimmick and a good media angle. We held an exhibition of photographs of the Rolling Stones and the Beatles which attracted high profile guests; we sent photographs to the media and the guests. The images and news about the event were tweeted and retweeted many times. As well as local magazines and newspapers, such as the Marylebone Journal, we ensure that our exhibitions are listed with London-wide magazines and websites such as Galleries. There are many
Crowds gather outside the gallery following extensive promotion for the Beatles & Stones exhibition
arts listings in London and it’s important to be included. When we ask people for their email address we ask if they would like to be a ‘friend of the gallery’; that emphasises our position as a local gallery and a part of the community. We send our friends regular eshots and we communicate via Twitter and Facebook. Social media is useful for reinforcing an image and engaging with customers on a regular basis.’ ART BUSINESS TODAY
The art of good business Invest in your database
Let quality be your focus Word of mouth is arguably the best marketing tool there is. I always tell trainees that if they do a good job for a customer, that person will tell four or five others. If they do a bad job, the customer will tell eight or nine, so never let a bad job leave your workshop. Never try to compete with other framers on price alone, because there’s always someone out there who’s prepared to beat your price, no matter how low you go. Instead, try to compete on quality. One of the adverts that I regularly use has the heading, ‘Rarely beaten on price, never on quality!’ Mike Royall GCF, Royall Framing
A gallery’s most important business tool is its database, so you must be meticulous about updating and managing records. We store notes on customers’ likes and dislikes, what they’re looking for, purchase history and anything else that will help match them to the right artwork. We go through the database regularly and highlight people who haven’t been in contact. Sometimes we call them and ask about their current requirements. We send e-shots to everyone on our database, about 3000, when we are holding an exhibition. We do this three weeks in advance, with a reminder the week before and again the day before the event. We send hard copies of invitations in the post to a selection of our contacts, normally to about 1000 to 1500 people. We email customers on a more targeted basis whenever we receive new artwork. Most people are happy to hand over their details if they have a genuine interest in buying art. There are cards to fill in in the gallery and you can register interest in particular pictures on our website. You have to be careful not to populate your database with browsers who will never buy artwork, so it’s important to talk to people about their interests. Robin Whitehouse, Gallery 3
Win customers through referral networking
Anna-Marie Bartlett GCF with her shortlisted frame at last year’s Art & Framing Industry Awards event
I attend a BNI networking event every Thuirsday morning before I start work (bni.co.uk). This has been fantastic for my business; between 40 and 50 local business people attend our meetings each week and I would say that I have now made frames for 80 per cent of them. You pay an annual fee and only one person per profession is allowed to join each chapter. BNI is about referral marketing, which is based on the simple principle that we all like to do business with people we know. Every week someone comes up to me saying something like, ‘I’ve been meaning to frame this certificate for months’ or ‘I’d never thought of framing my wedding flowers’. I bring completed frames to meetings to deliver them to customers, which means that other people see them too. Each week you get to talk about your business for 60 seconds, so I discuss a different framing job each week. Every few months you get to make a longer presentation. Our meetings are held close to my workshop which is useful, as it’s easy for people to drop by later. Anna-Marie Bartlett GCF, The Framing Lady ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 43
ART John James Audubon’s Birds of America have been in print since the 1830s. Early editions are extremely valuable, while modern copies sell for a few pounds
What’s it worth? Art and framing retailers are regularly asked to value artwork for customers, even though most don’t actually offer this service. Just saying ‘No’ isn’t providing a level of customer service that will keep people coming back, nor will it help develop your reputation as an expert. Annabelle Ruston explains how framers and gallery owners can usefully respond to ‘What’s it worth?’
he question that really interests guests on programmes such as Antiques Roadshow is how much their item is worth. Similarly, the most visited public pages on the Fine Art Trade Guild’s website are those about valuations. Everyone loves to think they’ve got a masterpiece in their attic. Framers and gallery owners are inevitably asked to value a disparate range of items and it can be hard to know what advice to offer. No one has sufficient expertise to value both a 19th century Japanese print and a piece of contemporary British graffiti art, and art professionals are in any case worried about the legal implications of giving advice that turns out to be incorrect. (An art dealer friend of mine pointed out that people always expect valuations to be free, though they wouldn’t expect a lawyer or accountant to give free professional advice. So infuriated is he by these endless time-consuming requests that he now asks people to email a triedand-tested recipe in exchange for his consideration.) You may not be able to value most artwork that is presented to you, but offering helpful advice can ensure that customers feel positive about you and
44 January 2014
your expertise. In an increasingly litigious world it’s essential that you don’t provide valuations unless you have the appropriate expertise. If someone acts on your advice, even free advice which was offered verbally, and they lose money, they may come to you seeking compensation. Experts and websites Remind customers that experts need to examine pictures in person before giving valuations. Photographs may provide some indication, but no one can assess important factors such as condition, age, quality and authenticity without actually seeing the artwork in question. Many people are not aware of this point. Suggesting that your customer take their artwork to a local auctioneer for a valuation can be helpful. Auctioneers see a lot of pictures and are experienced at making quick decisions about value. They tend to give verbal valuations free of charge, as this is part of the process of persuading people to give them their property to sell. Their valuations are based on what other similar items have sold for, so are no guarantee that the same price will be achieved again. Auctioneers may say that they don’t handle items such as the one in question. Many only sell artwork by
established contemporary artists, meaning artists whose work is listed as having achieved certain prices in the past. Some do not handle reproductions, other than signed limited editions by a small number of highly collectable artists. Find out what auction houses in your area will and won’t sell so you can advise customers. Also keep a note of their scheduled valuation days. Remind customers of the cost of selling at auction, such as commission, VAT on commission, insurance, illustration charges and ‘bought in’ charges if the item doesn’t sell. Some retailers negotiate a fee with their local auctioneer for works they take to the auction house on behalf of clients. If the auctioneer generally charges ten per cent commission, the retailer may be charged a reduced trade rate of six per cent, allowing them to charge four per cent to their customer. That way, the customer is saved from the hassle of entering the picture into the sale, the auction house receives more business and the retailer makes a commission. Auctioneers provide written valuations for insurance, but they charge for this. Charges are on a sliding scale according to the value of the item, the number of items being valued and whether the item will be ART BUSINESS TODAY
sold via the auction house. The larger auction house groups hold specialist sales focusing on categories such as dogs, cars, sailing or wildlife art. These often co-incide with events in the sporting calendar or important shows, when it is hoped that the right buyers will be in the UK. Suggesting that customers take their artwork to the auctioneer in question can be useful. Over the years retailers should build up a database of experts in various types of artwork, so they can direct customers to the right person. There are dealers known for their expertise in maps, rare sporting prints, film posters and Japanese prints. If you send customers with decent-looking artwork to auctioneers and dealers, give them your business card and ask them to mention your name. This generates goodwill and reinforces the idea that your recommendations and advice are a favour to your customers. Customers may be impressed if you subscribe to an auction record website. There are several sites that list
ART BUSINESS TODAY
thousands of artists and literally millions of prices fetched at auction, to enable people to research pictures and value. These sites tend to charge for detailed information. Sites such as artnet.com, artprice.com, fineartinfo.com and artfact.com are commonly used by the art trade. However, these sites are only useful if the artist’s name is clearly visible and you can be sure that you are
If someone acts on your advice, even free advice which was offered verbally, and they lose money, they may come to you seeking compensation
looking up the right artist (there may, for example, be several artists called Andrew Jones). Remind customers that the prices shown online for an artist’s work are only a guideline. Their picture may be of very different subject matter, quality or desirability to those listed.
Media, artist and subject matter It may be obvious to you that your customer’s picture is a reproduction, but there’s no reason why a member of the public should understand the difference between an original and a reproduction. If your customer has a reproduction of a well known painting that hangs in a museum, it is unlikely to be of particular value. Some reproductions and posters are highly collectable. Signed limited edition reproductions by LS Lowry, Russell Flint and David Shepherd are examples. Certain old film and advertising posters are sought after too. Limited edition prints are produced in limited numbers; this scarcity of supply can make them sought after. Some prints are produced in editions of less than 50, while others are from editions of 850 or more. However, the fact that a print was published as a limited edition is no guarantee of value, a fact that disappoints many owners. Some editions never sold out in the first place, other images are no longer fashionable. Gently suggest that your customer
January 2014 45
ART ➺ doesn’t get too excited if, for example, you see the name ‘Picasso’ scrawled at the bottom, as the picture is most likely to be a photographic reproduction or a copy made by an amateur. Sometimes the best work by a little-known artist is worth more than a minor work by a well-known artist, so a big name is not an absolute guarantee of value. Many artists who are not household names are nonetheless very well known in the art trade. Styles of painting go in and out of fashion and there may be a heightened awareness of works from a particular area, or in a certain style, thanks to a high profile public exhibition, book or auction result, or even the death of an artist. The subject matter of a picture affects its value. A painting of a pretty young girl is likely to be worth more than one of a stern-looking old man by the same artist; sunny landscapes are more sought after than dark ones and buyers prefer calm seas to stormy ones. Some subjects are particularly collectible; there is a strong market for works depicting rare sports such as coursing, boxing and curling. Pictures
Clockwise from top left: Sunny landscapes are more desirable than dark ones (illustration by Camille Pissarro); pictures of pretty girls appeal to buyers (illustration by W A Bouguereau); antique engravings of rare dog breeds may be easy to sell, such as as this dandie dinmont; rare artwork featuring sports such as boxing is likely to be collectible (illustration from The Badminton Library of Sports and Pastimes)
of horse races of historic interest, maybe featuring horses whose fame has endured, or particular race courses may be sought after. Pictures featuring unusual breeds of dog may be of value. Conversely, prints of famous London landmarks by little-known
artists are very common and unlikely to prove of high value. Biblical subjects are not fashionable. Sometimes the wide range of prices fetched by an artist’s work at auction is down to the different sizes of the
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ART BUSINESS TODAY
works, or it may be that the higher value works are finished oil paintings, while the cheaper ones are insubstantial sketches. Condition, rarity and the ‘Wow!’ factor Condition is an important issue. If works on paper have been stuck down with glue, had their edges trimmed, or been exposed to adverse conditions such as damp, the value might be affected. Visible ripples or foxing can put off collectors. If colours are faded, the value may be considerably diminished. Oil paintings that have been extensively restored may lose character, and thus value, as well as those which have been badly restored. Some old pictures and prints are incredibly rare and valuable, but age is no guarantee of value. There are thousands of 19th century prints on the market, many of which are decorative bookplates that may be worth a small amount if their subject has commercial appeal. A complete set of prints may be of interest to a buyer, just as a set of dinnerware is more collectable than a single plate. What makes an antique print
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desirable is complex. Knowledge of this is acquired by print dealers throughout their careers. A picture that was painted 100 years ago may be of no value if it is of poor quality, is very amateur or is in bad condition. There are myriad factors which can affect the value of an artwork. A handdrawn cartouche underneath a print may positively affect its value. Paintings with an interesting inscription on the back may be collectible. An early print made before a correction was made to the plate may be of interest to collectors. Pictures owned by famous people or with an interesting back story may be desirable. Romantic back stories can have a particularly positive impact on value. Certain combinations of artist and engraver make some prints particularly coveted. An artist’s first or last recorded work may be significant and works from certain periods in an artist’s life may be valued. Collectors may feel confident to invest in works by artists who were part of well-known groups, even if the artist in question is little-known. There is an endless list of factors potentially affecting the value
of artwork. Some artwork has an intangible quality, the ‘Wow!’ factor. It may be that one work by an artist could fetch ten times more than any other work by the same painter. This may be down to the quality of the work combined with fashionable subject matter and a heightened public
Providing guidelines on how valuations work should be part of your service, but be wary of making statements you may later regret
appreciation of a particular style. Valuing pictures is a complex business that must be undertaken by an expert. Be wary of letting eager customers push you into making statements that you may later regret. However, providing customers with general guidelines on how valuations work should be part of your service. ■
January 2014 47
An X-Rite i1PHOTO PRO Spectrophotometer analysing a colour patch
Maintaining a high If you want to achieve consistent quality when making giclée prints it’s essential to work with bespoke ICC profiles, says PermaJet’s Ian Windebank
ith digital printing now fully mature, it’s surprising how often colour profiling is neglected or ignored completely. Every device that captures or displays colour can be profiled according to standards promulgated by the International Colour Consortium (ICC), ensuring consistency of output. If you want consistency and reliability when printing, then you have to work with established ICC profiles. However, if you are happy to achieve random success and to waste paper and ink, then profiling isn’t for you. There are three types of profiling that are relevant to most workflows: monitor profiling, input (scanner or camera) profiling and output (paper) profiling. In this article I will explain how to profile paper. Don’t panic, there are many myths about paper profiling, and there are companies that invest in the concept that it is too difficult to create your 48 January 2014
own profiles. Rest assured that this is not the case. Specialist paper and canvas suppliers own hardware and software specifically for creating custom ICC profiles; all you need to do is print target patches, send them to your supplier and wait for your bespoke profiles to be emailed back to you. Their software will read the colours you have printed, measure them and generate the appropriate profile. The market leaders in paper profiling equipment are X-Rite (formerly known as GretagMacbeth) and Datacolor. Before you start profiling a paper or canvas that you want to print on, you must consider all the components that will have an impact: your printer, the media (paper or canvas), ink and printer driver. If you change any of the above, then the profile needs to change. For example, if you switch your ink from an OEM provider (original equipment manufacturer) to a third party manufacturer, the profile will need changing, as the likelihood is that the ink colour gamut will alter,
and possibly the chemical construction as well. When you have profiled a media you can be confident of repeatable quality, consistency and reliability. This is the goal of completing the customised profiling process. There is the option of downloading generic profiles from paper manufacturers’ websites, but at best these are a guide to overall print output expectations. When printers are manufactured they are built to operate within a tolerance of acceptability, so all machines are not identical, hence the importance of custom profiling. Using generic profiles within the expected working environment will provide a useful guide as to how a media will react to an image, but that’s all. Printable target patches The first thing to do is download a printable target patch, which is a set of coloured squares that conform to an industry standard, typically LAB colour. Specialist suppliers of inkjet paper and canvas have these patches ART BUSINESS TODAY
CASE STUDY John Roland, Salt of the Earth Giclée Print Service Our paper supplier makes custom ICC profiles for us. I have tried using off-the-shelf profiles; I’ve done side-by-side comparisons and the custom profiles give far better results. They provide a wider range of colours and more subtle detail. If you are struggling to achieve a particular colour, you know that it will be far more achievable with a custom profile. It’s about capturing the full range of tones and hues, not about physical details. Using the best ICC profiles gives you confidence; you know that you are operating at maximum capability and squeezing as much as possible out of your investment in paper and ink. When you are printing, nothing tells you ‘That’s it, you’ve got the colours perfect now,’ it’s down to your judgement, and custom profiles help inform your judgement.
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Our supplier provides us with a test sheet, which we print out and return, along with all the details of our software and computer. They use GretagMacbeth equipment to analyse our sample and create the right profile. Photoshop prompted us to download Adobe Colour Print Utility (ACPU) software because changes in the program were manipulating the image and we couldn’t override this. APCU ensures accurate results. Photoshop was reprocessing the image, which negated the point of the objective test sheet. Custom profiles are said to be economic, as the profile ensures that you are using the appropriate amount of ink.’ salt-of-the-earth.biz
available to download. Patches provide you with a set of known parameters. The patch style may vary according to the software and hardware combination that your supplier uses to measure the colour information. It is not the case that you need to print a multiple page patch, which includes thousands of colours, using up precious paper and ink to achieve a profile of any quality. You can rarely, if ever, see a difference in a print made using a 1000 colour patch file or a 4000 colour patch file. I appreciate that this is a contentious issue as the human eye can distinguish anywhere between two and ten million colours (dependent on your source of information), but it is important to be realistic about the colours we can see in any given print. I don’t believe that anyone could differentiate between two prints created with these alternative profile styles. As mentioned above, there are ‘home use’ ready-made paper profilers on the market, which are great for general experimentation and quick results, but the colour information
January 2014 49
CASE STUDY: Michael Setek, Art4Site
It is essential for professional printing houses such as ours to work with proper bespoke ICC profiles. That level of service is something our customers expect. But don’t forget that output profiles are only part of the picture, you also need to profile your monitor and inputting device, whether you use a camera or a scanner. We calibrate our monitors regularly, even though we use self-calibrating Eizo screens. But even a perfectly calibrated monitor won’t necessarily yield accurate results, you need the right ambient light for examining images on screen as well. The emphasis should be on your hard copy proof; we rigorously compare our printed proofs with the original artwork to ensure our reproductions are accurate representations. Every time you change any component of the printing suite, you need to make new ICC profiles. Each time we buy a new printer we make new profiles for each paper and canvas. We’ve invested in hardware and software with
which to make our own profiles; we use X-Rite i1Profiler for this. The main reason for using bespoke ICC profiles is consistency. We want all the printers in our studio to produce identical results for our clients, whether they request prints today or in a year’s time. ‘Canned profiles’ are available on paper makers’ websites. These are capable of ensuring very reasonable results now that printers are quite stable, but they are aimed at amateurs, not professional fine art printing houses. We are a certified Hahnemühle studio. One of the conditions of selection is that we use bespoke ICC profiles. Hahnemühle have downloadable profiles on their website, but they expect their certified studios to operate at a more specialist level.’ gicleeprinting.co.uk
Below: The X-Rite iSis measuring device analysing a colour patch Left: An i1 profiler test chart page which is downloadable from PermaJet’s website
Photoshop will alter the reference colours in the target patch, so they will no longer provide objective colour data. You need ACPU software
50 January 2014
measured is limited. It is preferable to use one of the free professional profiling services offered by specialist suppliers of printing hardware and consumables, such as PermaJet. These companies invest in the latest software and hardware combinations which produce the best quality profiles and maximum amount of colours measured on an A4 sheet. Download the target patch then download a simple piece of free software called the Adobe Colour Print Utility (ACPU): http://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/k b/no-color-management-optionmissing.html This software allows uniform profiles to be created, which work across multiple software platforms. ACPU software combines simplicity with consistency. If you print out a
colour patch without using ACPU, the program in which you open the image file (such as Photoshop) will alter the reference colours in the patch, so they will no longer provide objective colour data. Media settings, print quality and colour management Run the ACPU software and ensure the page size is A4, as this will automatically disable colour management. When you move to the printer driver options, you have to make a number of choices about: media settings; print quality; and colour management. Media settings often cause confusion and concern, but they are important and must not be dismissed. In the drop-down options you have to choose a media type relevant to the ART BUSINESS TODAY
style of coating on the paper you are profiling, plus the density of the overall media. Try to match these with the listed Epson, Canon or Hewlett Packard medias and you are going in the right direction. This part of the process is less critical for gloss or semi-gloss media but is important with matt surfaces, as the subtleties are more noticeable. Print quality is often misrepresented, in that printer manufacturers over state the DPI (dots per inch) required to create a print of photographic quality. You need to consider that a print at 1440dpi is barely (if at all) distinguishable from a 2880dpi print. A photo quality printer can print at 1440dpi and provide exceptional results. We print exhibition panels, typically 1x2m, and we do not exceed 1440dpi; with no complaints to date, I believe that this is a safe route to explore. The caveat to this is that if you are not using a photo quality printer, you should raise
Don’t miss out. Request entry details today.
When you move to the printer driver options, you have to make choices about media settings, print quality and colour management
the print quality to the maximum to ensure you achieve a desirable result. The final option is to disable colour management, which is generally not complicated but the option is sometimes hidden. Epson drivers tend to make it easy to find, though the option is sometimes hidden under ICM (internal colour management). Canon files it under ‘colour matching’, and then select ‘none’. Hewlett Packard refer to it as AMC (application manages colour). I apologise for only listing three manufacturers, but these are the main brands in the photo inkjet market. Repeatable quality Once a target patch is successfully printed you return it to your supplier for scanning and finalisation of the profile creation process. If you go with a brand like PermaJet this will be turned around rapidly; your profile ART BUSINESS TODAY
Some of last year’s winners celebrate after the awards dinner
The Art & Framing Industry Awards are organised by the Fine Art Trade Guild, fineart.co.uk The awards winners will be announced at a dinner on Saturday 17 May 2014, which will be combined with a range of educational and networking events and an exhibition of work by Guild artists. The venue will be the Holiday Inn, Elstree
For entry details contact Louise Hay, firstname.lastname@example.org
➺ January 2014 51
ART ➺ will probably be emailed to you on the day your printed sample is received. A rare scenario is that your system requires a Version 4 ICC profile. Currently Version 2 (we don’t know what happened to Version 3) profiles are the standard that most operating systems and software adheres to. These specifications were published by the International Colour Consortium and provide the standards with which profiling software works. From time to time a V4 profile solves a problem. This problem might make itself known by a blacked out print preview, typically surfacing in Photoshop CS 3 Extended. Your supplier should provide not only the
These specifications, published by the International Colour Consortium, provide objective standards
ability to determine which profile is required, but also the ability to supply whichever is suitable for your system. A new phenomenon is working with profiles in 64 bit environments. Many computers run on this type of system, as it helps users to make the most of the processing power of their machine. If you are working in a 64 bit environment, all you need to do is assign profiles specifically to your printer in the control panel. This may sound complicated but simple ‘how to’ guides are available; we include all the information you need in a straightforward A4 pdf. Sometimes users are pulling their hair out trying to work out why their profile is not printing properly and the reason may be that they are working within a 64 bit system. In short, profiling is designed to ensure consistency and to save time, money and media, not only for you but also for your customers, giving everyone the confidence in a supply chain that won’t leave you guessing. ■ Ian Windebank is UK Technical Support officer at imaging supplier PermaJet, www.permajet.com 52 January 2014
CASE STUDY Terry Davies, Lens Scape
ICC profiles are essential. I am a landscape photographer, but 80 per cent of my work is making fine art prints for other artists, and I don’t think you could produce sufficiently accurate colours to satisfy many artists if you didn’t use bespoke profiles. I have a responsibility to get the best possible results for my customers and I wouldn’t be doing this if I used generic profiles. Each paper has unique characteristics and coatings and these react in very different ways with various ink Terry Davies, inset, and one of his own combinations. This means that you photographs couldn’t achieve proper control over how colours print without bespoke ICC profiles. I have tried off-the-shelf profiles, but the results are never quite right. Artists inevitably have a good eye for colour and are highly sensitive to how the colours in their work are reproduced, so it’s expedient to use bespoke profiles. You would waste a lot of time and materials otherwise. I work for about 120 artists, so I’m pretty familiar with their requirements. I’ve never advertised; I think that artists come to me for their printing as they believe that a fellow artist will understand their concerns and aims. We invested in the Color Confidence Profiler, so we create our own profiles whenever we take on a new paper. We never change our inks as using third party inks would nullify the warranties on our printers. We recently bought a Canon iPF8400 printer from PermaJet and they visited and created all the new profiles we need for this machine, which saved time. I wouldn’t say that creating your own profiles is straightforward; you need to understand the mechanics of each stage of the process. But like most things, once you are up and running it becomes easier with practice. It’s hard to print from Photoshop without any interference, as the program automatically applies its own filters in the background. And ACPU has its own issues. Once you’ve printed your colour swatch you need to use a spectrophotometer to read the colours, strip by strip, and feed the information to your computer. We use an i1PHOTO PRO spectrophotometer from X-Rite. Software then analyses the colour information, compares it to the ICC baseline and produces profiles.’ lens-scape.co.uk
Business tips for Galleries should have resources that would be unattainable to most artists operating alone
Artists sometimes don’t understand why galleries keep roughly 50 per cent of the sales price of work they sell. Good galleries earn this commission, allowing artists to spend their days creating artwork, which is what all of us want to do. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you can maximise sales and develop your reputation properly without the help of a gallery. Galleries have clients whose taste they understand and with whom they’ve developed a relationship. When they take on a new artist’s work, they get in touch with people who are likely to buy the work. These tried and tested buyers are invaluable to artists. Galleries often pay high street overheads and invest heavily in marketing, PR and a web presence. Artists may have their own websites, but most don’t have the time and resources to ensure that people visit their site. One of the main reasons why people visit artists’ websites is because they’ve seen their work for sale in a gallery. There are thousands of pictures for sale on eBay, Etsy and other online marketplaces; getting yours seen without the promotional clout of a good gallery is hard work. Mark Braithwaite yorkartist.com Pink Study 12 (above) and Ruby Study 5
Approach galleries before publishers nce your work is with a handful of galleries you are more likely to be taken on by a publisher. Approaching galleries may be a daunting, but it’s the best place to start and, in my experience, gallery owners are very nice. Bear in mind that they are used to being contacted by artists, so your approach won’t phase them. Wait until you’ve got a portfolio of at least ten to 12 original works in a consistent style before you approach galleries. Do your research: assess whether your work would be a good fit with a particular gallery’s style. It’s not ideal if they already have an arist whose work is very similar to yours, but the general feel of the work they sell should sit well with your own style. Don’t just drop in unannounced. Email a few images and ask for an appointment to show your portfolio.
Publishers tend to prefer arists who already have gallery representation. Establish a market for your originals before trying to get into print. Elaine Cooper elainecooperart.com
Know your market Before bringing out a range of merchandise and investing in trade shows you have to carry out extensive market research. Getting cards and gift wrap printed is easy these days. You’ve got to adapt your style to suit the market and come up with goods that will sell. It’s a challenge to deliver products that are memorably different, yet are at the same time fashionable.
Linda Wood, lindawood.co.uk ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 53
FRAMING The image is framed with a 60mm mount each time. The mouldings, all from LION, are, from top: L2052 Pastello Sepia; L1922 Mono Black; L2073 Pisa Putty
We all know that it’s good practice to sell-up and inspire customers to buy quality bespoke frames, but it can be hard to know where to start. Annabelle Ruston looks at the nuts and bolts of encouraging people to look beyond thin black ready-mades and choose frames that will make their interiors shine
Designed to sell O rdering bespoke products isn’t something most of us do every day. We are used to taking prepackaged items off the shelf. Most of us don’t even regularly ask butchers and green grocers for specific quantities of goods, we just pick up a ready-packed selection. The days when we all visited a tailor or dressmaker every few months are long behind us. So we need to give people the confidence to buy bespoke frames, and the tools to make this job easy. Here are five easy steps towards convincing your customers not to settle for second best.
1) Show enthusiasm It’s a lot easier to convince customers of the benefits of quality framing if you believe in them yourself. Enthusiasm is infectious. As are doubt and despondency. Selling up should most definitely not be about persuading people to 54 January 2014
FRAMING This article is brought to you by LION Picture Framing Supplies
buy goods they don’t need, or pushily cornering them into making purchases. That will only succeed in ensuring that they never come back. You should only offer a more expensive option if it will better meet the customer’s needs, not because it will make more profit for you. That would be a short-term strategy, which would not help build long-term relationships with customers. However, you shouldn’t judge the depth of other people’s pockets by your own, or make assumptions about their understanding of value. All experienced framers have stories to tell about customers who’ve come in looking as if they haven’t a bean, and have then spent a three-figure sum on framing a certificate or child’s drawing. Start by complimenting the artwork, or making an appropriately positive comment about it. The customer’s reaction will reveal how much the item means to them, which will help you gauge how much they should invest in presenting it.
2) Listen It’s important to listen to your customer’s needs. Specialist glazing, hand-finished frames and elaborate mounts aren’t suitable for every job. Framers who are good at up-selling don’t try to sell the most expensive option every time, rather, they listen carefully to their customer’s requirements. Sometimes an inexpensive frame is the option that best suits their needs; by selling them an inexpensive frame you are reiterating your role as an expert, which will ensure that the customer comes back. Ask questions that will help you ascertain each customer’s needs. Find out if they have ever bought bespoke framing before, so you can assess their level of knowledge. Ask where they acquired the artwork; their answer will provide insight into how they perceive the item and how much they value it. Then enquire where it will hang and ask about the décor in the rooom. If the picture will be in pride of place in their lounge or boardroom you owe it to them to offer them a frame that reflects their personality and will provide their living space with the ‘Wow!’ factor. ART BUSINESS TODAY
3) Be the expert In a retail landscape dominated by identikit multiples, the trump card of the independent is in-depth product knowledge and the expertise of their staff. One of the main reasons why people visit independents is because they are uncertain about what they are buying and are looking for advice. It is therefore almost rude not to take the time to offer them the guidance they are seeking. Customers are paying for your design advice, so be sure to give it to them. You are short changing them if you invest minimal time in their job and just sell them the simplest option. Don’t look upon time spent with customers as wasted, as time that could have been spent making frames. Your pricing structure should include a labour charge, which in turn should cover the time you spend at the design table. Take the time to explain to the customer why you have chosen a particular moulding, or why you discarded several shades of mountboard as being too light. This aspect of the design process may seem routine to you, but it can be intriguing to an outsider, and your focus on their artwork is flattering. A new customer may ask for a white mount and a brown frame because their preconception is that that’s what’s available. It may not be what they actually want. Use your expertise to find out what they want, then show them options that meet these requirements.
What a difference a frame makes
The simplicity of this flat black moulding is right on trend and is a highly versatile option
This putty-coloured frame with a matt finish and silver highlights conveys quality and understated elegance
4) Sell the benefits Up-selling is about selling the virtues of what you do. People come to you with a ‘problem’ and they want you to solve it, by offering them the frame that best suits their needs. If you do this, you will win their trust, which will ensure that they keep coming back and tell all their friends about you. Don’t confuse the process of winning a customer’s trust with selling them a bargain; if you offer good advice, most people will be happy to pay for it. Just look for the signs; if your customer looks anxious, make eye
Stained wood finishes are currently fashionable and this sepia tone complements both contemporary and traditional interiors
➺ January 2014 55
FRAMING ➺ contact, smile and produce a less expensive moulding. You can always come down in price, so you won’t lose anything by trying to sell your customer the best option for their artwork. Of course, some people will visit your shop who will never buy bespoke framing. They have come to the wrong place, and will only ever buy a readymade from a multiple. No retailer, in any business, can convert everyone who walks through their door into a customer. But the pool of potential customers for bespoke framing is small, so you can’t afford to alienate any of them by failing to sell the benefits, offering inadequate advice or being too pushy.
5) Display examples
All of these frames are right for this wedding photograph. The embossed frame would add interest to an interior and offers a contemporary take on ornamentation, while the plain angular frame below it would suit a contemporary room. The rustic finish on the frame seen on the opposite page would be a safe choice were the picture to hang in a space that bridges the modern and the traditional, as many British homes do (LION mouldings: L2123 Roccoco China, top; L1923 Mono White, above; L2089 Zen Silver, opposite page)
MAKE YOUR OWN DISPLAY LION has a limited number of the prints shown here, along with chop kits of the mouldings, which you can use to make your own display. Contact Sarah Clarke email@example.com – or drop by LION’s stand D85 in the Art & Framing Trade Show & Expert Seminars area in Hall 4 of Spring Fair International at the NEC, Birmingham, 2-6 February www.springfair.com
56 January 2014
People may struggle with visual imagination; framers are used to looking at chevrons and making the mental leap from these to a fully framed picture, but those working in other fields may not be. Moulding chevrons are hard to evaluate, as your eye is drawn to them; the visual balance and emphasis is very different when the whole picture is surrounded by a frame, not just one corner. Sample frames make it easier for people to appreciate what a difference a frame makes, and how the same image can have the ‘Wow!’ factor in one frame, yet look pretty ordinary in another. Samples show how a simple certificate or school photograph has much more impact when framed creatively. Wall space is at a premium for many framers, but framed examples don’t need to be large. A window display based on the same picture framed in several styles can be eyecatching and thought-provoking. Framed samples can play an important role in the design and sales process, just as a picture can paint a thousand words. A physical example of what you are explaining can bring your words to life for the customer. Visualisation software is becoming increasingly common. This enables customers to see what their artwork will look like in a range of presentation options, and can really help people understand the power of the right frame. ART BUSINESS TODAY
FRAMING This article is brought to you by LION Picture Framing Supplies
A computer monitor or tablet in the workshop with a slideshow of past projects and examples is another very useful tool. The eye is drawn to moving displays.
A WORD FROM OUR SPONSOR I think it’s easy for all of us in the trade to forget what a wonderful job framers do. There aren’t many bespoke services that almost anyone can afford, and few other businesses on the high street dominated by independents. So I think it’s useful to remind ourselves that bespoke framing is great value. The framer’s expert eye makes the difference between just getting a picture up on the wall and turning it into a covetable piece that draws the whole room together. In a world of flat pack furniture, bespoke framed art can be completely individual. The framer’s expertise ensures valuable pieces are kept safe and heavy pictures are hung safely. I think a small display showing what a difference the right frame makes really helps get over the message and gives customers the confidence to ask for something that might never have occurred to them.
6) Know the trends Part of your role as an expert is knowledge of interior décor trends, so you have to ensure that you’re up to date on these. On occasion it may be appropriate to reassure customers by telling them that the frame they have chosen will complement today’s shabby chic, tribal, minimalist urban loft, or retro 1950s style. Or it may be useful to make more general comments about colour palettes, and this will underline your role as a design professional. To this end, it’s a good idea to subscribe to a few interior design magazines, blogs and e-shots. Some examples are listed here, but there are many more available at a click of your mouse. ● elledecor.com/designdecorate/trends/ ● trendbible.com/blog/hometrends/home-trends-autumn-winter201314/ ● hearthomemag.co.uk/blog/ ● housetohome.co.uk/search/picture+ frame/advice ■
Nicola Harrold, Marketing Director, LION Picture Framing Supplies
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ART BUSINESS TODAY
I have a busy workshop making display cases for all sorts of uses. I have been asked to create a series of diorama settings for a military museum; I need to show various military vehicles and aircraft in realistic settings. Up to now my work has involved making suitably sized and shaped cases into which items are fixed, involving a minimal amount of decoration. However, these models are being supplied in an unfinished state and I have been asked to finish them. The details of the finishes are not a problem, as I have been given comprehensive research material, but when I have visited model shops and bought paint samples I find that the majority are enamel Halford’s grey plastic primer based; the few that are is the perfect acrylic seem weak and undercoat ineffective. I use your own Everest paints for mouldings and wonder if they have any potential for model finishing? John Hardy, Woodborough My leisure time, when I’m not restoring paintings and frames, is spent building and finishing model 58 January 2014
Send your framing problems to: firstname.lastname@example.org
aircraft. I came to the same conclusion as you about model paints. When I eventually thought to use my Everest paints instead, I realised what a perfect solution they are, and I’ve used them ever since. The fact that they are water soluble means that, as well as having the advantage of easy brush cleaning, they are intermixable so you can produce any shade you need. They can also be easily thinned for use as washes. I am currently working on a model of a late WW2 American fighter. By that stage of the war these were left uncamouflaged, showing their original aluminium metal finish. Everest silver is a perfect facsimile of polished aluminium, and subtle additions of grey and brown can be used to achieve different tones and stains. A tip: buy an aerosol of grey plastic primer from Halfords. This is the perfect undercoat to use on plastic. When fixing large or heavy objects in box frames, what is your I favour craft preferred method of wire over both screws and attachment? I can’t make glues my mind up between screws and glues. Hannah Cartwright, Caernafon Neither, Hannah. My favoured
method of attachment is wire passed through the back of the box and secured behind by twisting. I get my supplies from a local craft warehouse and the wire I use is known, not surprisingly, as craft wire. When mounting blocks are needed to support awkwardly shaped items such as cricket bats or swords, I do use screws, but I resort to glue very rarely. I occasionally have an annoying problem with my Morsø: when cutting wide hard wood such as oak and ash, I find that the moulding lifts with the blades when they are retracted. This is not good when working with a piece of kit that bites quite as effectively as the Morsø. Any ideas why this happens, Pete? Andrew Spencer, Ledaig, Scotland This is almost certainly because there is too much tension when the blades are in contact with the moulding. It’s a good idea to deliberately move the blades away from the moulding after each cut, thus alleviating pressure and avoiding possible lifting. I have to admit that this was the cause of the nastiest cut I have ever received when using The Beast. I am using an increasing amount of a very wide reverse moulding profile. This ART BUSINESS TODAY
requires constant adjustments of the top clamps on my underpinner to hold the mitres during assembly, due to the different heights of the moulding across the width. Is there a trick I don’t know about to help get round this nuisance? Damien Green, Oswestry My solution to this irritating problem is to use a mitred corner made from scrap pieces of the same moulding placed upside down on top of the frame corner when underpinning. This provides a continuous flat A planer thicknesser surface that does is not essential, not require but I find mine adjustment to incredibly the clamps. If useful you use this moulding a lot, perhaps some additional protective cushioning would be a good idea.
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I’m about to set up a framing workshop and I don’t want to skimp on my potential. I’ve got all the absolute ‘must haves’ – power Morsø, computerised mountcutter, vacuum press - but I’m aware there must be other ‘non framing’ equipment I could make use of too. My question, Pete, is what is the most useful machinery outside the standard picture framing stuff? Colm Stacey, Donegal Hi Colm, I believe we met at the NEC last February. Looks like your plans have come on a pace since then. The equipment I recommend requires a separate workshop because of dust, but if I remember correctly, space is not a problem for you. I suggest that you invest in a good table saw. It’s surprising how many times you need MDF, ply or just straightforward timber cutting to size. A decent router mounted onto a bench with an adjustable fence is useful for routing out extra rebates and creating custom slips. Lastly, I recommend investing in a planer
thicknesser. This is not absolutely essential, but I use mine a lot, not so much for planing, but to achieve specific thicknesses when modifying mouldings. Settle an argument between me and a framer friend – we’ve agreed to take your answer as the settler and there’s twenty quid riding on it, so no pressure. What mountboard do you consider to be the most effective in a framer’s workshop – conservation or museum? Names withheld by request
You know where you are with materials made from 100% cotton
Museum every time. There are no doubts with 100 per cent cotton. ■ Pete Bingham GCF owns Wright & Layton and the Northern Framing School, Sheffield, as well as the Everest range of decorative paints
January 2014 59
An assortment of (from left to right) coated copper, coated stainless, galvanised braided and sleeve system with ferrules and crimper
US framer and author Chris A Paschke GCF CPF looks at the pros and cons of various types of picture hangers and wire
Do you know
rofessional framers are a cut above the do-it-yourself artist or crafter in their knowledge of framing materials and should always promote the best and safest way to enclose and exhibit customers’ art. Small alterations in hardware or wire selection can significantly increase the stability and safety of finished frames. Remember: any hanging system is only as dependable as its weakest link.
Screws The weight or gauge of a screw is based on shaft dimensions and threading. To simplify identification of smaller, more commonly used screws a number designation preceded by the # sign has been adopted with #0 the smallest and #15 the largest. In framing, #4 or #6 are most common, with #3 and #8 occasionally needed. In the UK, screws are sometimes measured in millimetres, for example B&Q measures screws in millimetres, while Screwfix measures them in screw size. #4 is equivalent to 3mm, #6 is 3.5mm and #8 is 4mm. Screws are identified by shaft # (#4, #6, #8); category (wood, metal); head style (flat head/countersink, pan head, round head); and drive (slotted, Phillips, combination, Pozi-UK). Wood screws have a coarser pitch (few 60 January 2014
threads per inch) than sheet metal or machine screws, and often have an unthreaded shank below the head. The threadless shank allows the top piece of wood to be pulled flush against the under piece without getting caught on the threads. They are available with countersink or pan heads. Metal screws have sharp threads
A simple solution to prevent failure is to replace the tack with a small #3 x 1/4” metal screw. Adjustable sawtooth hangers are available
that cut into material such as sheet metal, plastic or wood. They make excellent fasteners for attaching metal hardware to wood because the fully threaded shaft provides good retention in wood. Flat head screws are chosen for countersinking when the head needs to be flush with the wood surface. Round head screws have a domed
shape, while pan head screws have a slightly rounded head with short vertical sides. Pan head or round head are most common for D-rings, Dstraps and steel plate hangers. There are many drive configurations but straight slotted, Phillips, combination and Pozi are most common for framing. Sawtooth hangers The typical sawtooth hanger is a jagged edged metal strip 1-2” long that resembles a saw edge. Unfortunately sawtooth hangers get quite a bad rap because of hanging failure, though it is not the weakness of the metal strip but rather the softness of the moulding that is the weakness. Most sawtooth hardware comes with short 3/8” to 1/2” tacks (pins), though all-in-one ‘nail-less’ sawtooth hangers are available. If the wood is soft, pressed tacks can pull out of the frame due to weight and gravity. A simple solution to prevent failure is to replace the tack with a small #3 x 1/4” metal screw. Adjustable sawtooth hangers called CWH hangers are available from LION Picture Frame Supplies. These allow artwork to lie flush against the wall when hung. They are modestly adjustable after installation and mount to wood, polymer or aluminum ART BUSINESS TODAY
frames, supporting up to 32 pounds. Hangers are individually designed for canvas art on stretchers, frames with hollow backs, frames with flat or papered backs, and aluminum frames with a channel. Screw eyes A screw with a looped head is called an eye screw, eye hook, screw eye or screweye, and these are designed as an attachment point for wire. When installing screw eyes into hardwood such as maple, oak or walnut, stresses occur at the transition point where the screw meets the eye, which weakens it. If too small an eye has been selected for too hard a wood the eye can twist off from the inserted screw. In soft or reconstituted wood such as MDF the threading can create sawdust rather than grabbing the wood grain as it is inserted, allowing the screw to pull out. Insertion of a large eye forces the frame away from the wall, which can leave a mark on the wall or split the sides of narrow moulding. D-Rings and strap hangers D-rings come in zinc, nickel, brass and bronze in small one-hole or two-hole styles. Heavy duty three-hole strap hangers are constructed of heavier steel, accommodate #6 x 1/2” screws, may be hung with or without wire and can be used on wood frames, mirrors, gallery wraps or cradled boxes.
Galvanised braided Size
Max wt Break wt
If hung without wire they are aligned vertically at the upper corners on the back of the frame, and are suspended directly on substantial picture hooks or screws anchored into the wall. There are many styles not pictured here; a huge variety of Drings and strap hangers are available, so it is possibile to find a hanger to suit every type of artwork and frame. Steel anchor plates Anchor plates are an alternative to strap hangers and are sold as two-hole and four-hole styles with screw holes located both above and below the ring for attaching the wire. They are designed to be mounted vertically 1/4 to 1/3 down from the top edge of the frame, either centered on a narrow moulding or about 1/2” from the inner edge of a wider moulding. These plates may be used with #4 or #6 pan or Pozi screws in varying lengths, according to the moulding. The four-hole super steel hanger is 3 1/2” long and 1/4” wide, rendering it suitable for heavy art and able to support up to 100 pounds. The shorter two-hole super steel hanger is 2” long and 1/4” wide and is designed for art up to 50 pounds. The longer four-hole version has staggered holes to dissipate the stress of the wood, which reduces hardwood splitting, and multiple screws increase screw security with MDF or soft wood.
Coated stainless steel Size
Max wt Break wt
Coated copper Size
Flanger hangers When a frame is too narrow for a Dring, strap or steel hanger, another option is the flanger. It has a 90 degree bend along its full length which grips the inside edge of narrow mouldings, reducing the risk of the wood splitting by eliminating twisting and screw tear-out. This also minimises bowing, providing more strength and stability, and the flat profile holds the frame close to the wall. Wire attachment is slightly angled so this hardware is sold as mirror-image pairs for use on the right and left hand sides. Flanger narrow hangers fit 1/4” to 1/2” mouldings and support up to 50 pounds. Flanger medium hangers fit 1/2” to 1” mouldings and support up to 70 pounds; flanger wide hangers fit mouldings beween 1” and 4” and will support 100 pounds. Wire Selecting the correct wire to support your frame is every bit as important as using the right hardware. Picture frame wire comes in many different types and weights. There is multi-strand braided galvanised steel, twisted stainless steel, stainless plastic coated, copper plastic coated, brass coated steel and nylon coated sleeve systems. Galvanised is most popular with artists, but is the least effective. Plastic coated stainless steel will not mark
Brass coated steel (UK)
Max wt Break wt Size
Max wt Break wt
Sleeve system Size
Max wt Break wt
24# stated #2
This chart reflects suggested and average weights and size numbers. Maximum frame weight varies with wire manufacturer, style and coating. Braided suggests 4x the frame weight to equal break point, while stainless is only 3x, allowing it to accommodate heavier frames. ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 61
From left: pan head slotted, round head combination and flat head (countersunk) Phillips. Pozi not shown
Screw eyes come in a wide range of lengths and weights. The weakest point is where the eye meets the screw shaft, as indicated with an arrow
Snap-in sawtooth hangers for metal frames (top), long and short sawtooth hangers with #3 screws (left) and tacks (right)
Feed wire through hanger, through ferrule and back through ferrule and crimp tightly for a secure hold
Zinc plated steel anchor plates in 51mm (2”) and 90mm (3 1/2”) styles. They install vertically and distribute the weight on the frame sides
Smaller light and heavyweight two-hole D-rings (left); fourhole lightweight strap and heavyweight strap hangers in steel (right) Narrow flangers (shown) for 9-12mm mouldings use leverage to anchor hardware and distribute frame load. Also available as medium (12-24mm) and wide (24mm +) versions
LION Picture Framing Supplies CWH hangers for flat back, canvas and metal sided installations
walls, hurt hands during installation, rust or discolour. Coated copper is softer and easier to work with but does not have the strength of stainless steel. Brass coated wire surrounds a single rust-resistant steel strand, but the coating can crack which compromises the strength of the wire. As braided galvanised steel wire diameter increases, the strands remain constant in size but additional strands are added to the braid. A #2 braided wire has 12 strands while a #8 braided has 36 strands. In contrast, all stainless steel wire contains seven strands that have been tension twisted like a cable, and as the wire gets larger the strands increase in diameter. This makes twisted wires comparatively stronger than braided, but also less flexible. The correct weight of wire required will vary depending upon the type of wire selected. The break strength of a braided wire should be four times the weight of the frame, while the break strength of a coated stainless wire is 62 January 2014
three times the weight of the frame. A ten pound painting requires a 30 pound maximum weight stainless wire, but a 40 pound braided wire. A #3 braided wire has a maximum capacity of 16 pounds while a #3 stainless steel picture wire has a maximum strength of 20 pounds. Though #3 braided and #3 stainless have the same break point at 68#, the cabled stainless wire can support a heavier painting. The larger/heavier the wire the wider the variance between braided and cabled structures. A #8 braided is rated at 36 pounds with a 145# break point, while #8 stainless is 60 pounds with 170# break point. Note the softer coated copper has a break strength of 170 pounds, but a maximum frame weight of only 40 pounds. Sleeve (ferrule) systems offer a high end appearance and are easy to install, but run more than coated wire. Sevalon, Eagle Klaw and Surflon are nylon coated crimper systems for wiring frames. The coated stainless is
available in black, bronze and clear coating with matching crimp sleeves. A crimping tool is necessary to crush the metal sleeve that clamps the wire in place. The wire should be fed through the sleeve, around the hanger of choice, then slid back through the sleeve. To ensure it will not slip, the wire may be turned back and passed through the ferrule a third time. Make sure the sleeve is well crimped. When choosing wire pay attention to the weights of the frame. Most likely a coated stainless steel wire will be your best choice, and probably #3 and #5 variants will handle most all your demands. But it is better to select a wire too heavy than too light. ■ Artist and framer Chris A Paschke GCF CPF owns Designs Ink, USA, and is author of the best-selling Mounting and Laminating Handbook, now in its third edition. There is a section on Chris’s website featuring her articles for Art Business Today: DesignsInkArt.com/library.htm ART BUSINESS TODAY
Trade secrets Look after your Morsø or face the costs Lubricate your Morsø every single week with three-in-one oil. If the bellcrank seizes up you’ll face the cost of a major re-fit. If your foot pedal won’t come to the top, maybe you just need to adjust the spring to the next notch up, rather than replace it. Make sure you lubricate the point where the spring goes through the hole or your machine will develop metal fatigue and the hook will snap off. Use grease for this. The 12mm bar from the blade carrier to the foot pedal at the back can bind up solid if you don’t put oil in the drilling hole at the top. My charge for on-site visits to service Morsøs is £275, so that’s how much you can save by looking after your equipment. Mike Bond GCF, Sports Framing
‘Get a quote’ buttons can be highly effective
here’s a ‘get a quote’ button which features prominently on the home page of my website, which is really effective. Visitors are taken to a form which is quick to fill in and send, and it is made clear that my quote is not a final price, just a guide. The form asks for a few basic details about the size of the artwork, and there’s space for further information if the customer wants to give it at this stage. At least five people a week ask for a quote, and a high percentage become customers. Some people are embarrassed to ask for a quote faceto-face in case it’s too expensive for them, but they are happy to send a request over the internet. This feature also allows people to ask for quotes at all times of the day and night (they are often sent very late). When I reply I give two or three options, maybe a single mount would be £75 and a double £85. I use Arqadia mouldings, so I copy and paste images of these from Recent object framing Arqadia’s website. projects which feature on The Anna-Marie Bartlett GCF, Framing Lady’s website The Framing Lady
The importance of labels We have been printing our own back-of-frame labels for some time now, since it is economical to do so, and, importantly, this allows flexibility in terms of text, design and label size. We recently added the date at the foot of our labels, at the suggestion of one of our customers who brought back a previously framed picture, so we could match the frame on a new order. This makes it quick for us to access previous orders, and a bonus is that since the date is centred on the label, it makes it easy to position the sticker accurately on the back board. Alan Watt GCF, Belvidere Gallery ART BUSINESS TODAY
January 2014 63
AGENTS & JOBS Full time experienced picture framing position, London SW20. Position available for an experienced framer whose tasks will include serving and advising customers on all aspects of framing, mounting and presentation of artwork, frame construction, computerised mount cutting (training will be offered), cutting and handling all types of glass, frame assembly and fitting up. The framer will need to be computer literate and able to work as part of a team. Working hours: Tuesday – Friday 9.30 -5.30, Saturday 10-5pm, the position includes working up to 3 Saturdays a month. Please send us a CV to Liza, email@example.com or call 0208 946 0444 PRINTS & ORIGINALS Fine art photography of London available in limited editions from Mr Smith World Photography. We supply homes and offices internationally. Call now to discuss bespoke collections. firstname.lastname@example.org. 01992538899 Indian fine art prints available on canvas and paper in a range of sizes to suit any wall. View our unique collection including Vintage Bollywood film posters online. www.allindiaarts.com Jacqueline Stanhope Fine Art - original oil paintings and limited edition prints at trade prices. International delivery. Free print brochure on request. 0191 384 5343 or www.jacquelinestanhope-fineart.com Original artwork for sale. Private collector is selling paintings/sketches by artists such as Alexander Millar, Peter Smith, Paul Horton, Charlotte Atkinson, Jonathan Truss, Tony Forrest, John Wilson, BAM. For details please email email@example.com
Subscribe to our weekly promotion For saving up to 50% off Top brands of consumables, machines and serving Subscribe to: firstname.lastname@example.org www.ukframingsupplies.com
Daler Rowney inspiring creativity since 1783 For all mountboard requirements, please contact: Tom Hopper Key Account Manager - Framing email@example.com
TRAINING Art of Framing Training School. www.fringearts.co.uk or call Lyn Hall GCF Adv to request prospectus. Flexible training to suit your needs. Accommodation available. Based outside Guildford/Farnham. Call (01483) 810555
MATERIALS & EQUIPMENT Mounts4You. Online web based mount cutting service. Visit www.mounts4you.co.uk for information Hardwood wedges for stretched canvases. Over 50% of 19th and 20th century stretched canavases have broken or missing wedges. We manufacture eight different size/thickness combinations of replacement hardwood wedges, £5.50 per set of ten plus £3.50 p & p per order. Try the Studio Selection:10 each, 4 useful sizes, £23.50 post paid and save £2. Tel 01603 743374 with credit/debit card details. Leveton Studio, Orman House, 17a Grove Avenue, New Costessey, Norwich, NR5 0JD 64 January 2014
Affordable giclée printing for galleries, framers and artists. Easy upload, trade discounts and great prices. Specialists in affordable canvas prints. Visit point101.com for more information and full price lists or call +44 (0)20 7241 1113 Digital artwork suppliers. High volume photographic restoration and enhancement services. Range of photo-to-art products available includes Caricatures, Pop Art, and Fantasy templates. Free to register. 0208 144 2472 or firstname.lastname@example.org Frame pricing software available for both Macs and PC's and in imperial or metric measurements. Powerful yet simple to use and easily adapted to suit all businesses. An indispensable tool for the modern framing business. Visit www.royallframing.co.uk or call Mike Royall GCF on +44 (0)1454 617022 Giclée and canvas printing service from Richard C O Lovesey Fine Art. Order greeting cards, keyrings, notelets featuring your artwork. No Minimum order. Mount cutting service. Enquiries welcome. (01507) 600836 www.loveseyfineart.com The Association of Animal Artists invites artists working in any media to join for exhibition opportunities, workshops, field trips, AAA Art Rendezvous Days and the opportunity to work from life with the AAA En Plein Air Group. Please visit associationofanimalartists.com
TEXTILE FRAMING WORKSHOPS Play and display art vinyl album flip frames. White and black. Single item £12+VAT, triple set £25+VAT, limited stock. Carriages cost. Contact email@example.com or 01204 397707 Stretcher bars and canvases made to measure in the UK. Fast turnaround. Softwood and hardwood bars. Any size from 200mm to 3000mm. Print stretching service. Made by the UK’s leading manufacturer. For a catalogue call us now on +44 (0)121 2480030. www.harrismoorecanvases.co.uk
Harlequin Frames, Lincolnshire. Individually tailored textile framing workshops. Contact Mal Reynolds GCF Adv to discuss details 01673 860249 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
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Sports Framing offer training from basics up to GCF standard. I day engineering courses on the Morsø. Oldham, Lancs. www.sportsframing.co.uk UK School of Framing. A range of courses available at a pace to suit each level to allow students to enjoy and absorb what is taught. Courses take place at venues all over the UK and are accredited by the Fine Art Trade Guild. www.ukschoolofframing.com, 01494 459545 Wessex Pictures Framing School (est 1987) offers training to novices and experienced framers. It is recognised by the Fine Art Trade Guild. The 5-day course in Leatherhead is £395 + VAT. Phone Garry White GCF, 0845 456 9970
Call 020 7381 6616 to order or visit fineart.co.uk
Down School of Picture Framing. ALL courses accredited by the Fine Art Trade Guild. Call Steven McKee GCF Adv 028 9269 3807 / 07834 787487 downschoolofpictureframing.co.uk Hedgehog Art & Framing is a Fine Art Trade Guild accredited trainer. Basics to advanced, worldwide training on your premises. Over 500 students to date. Roy Rowlands GCF 01527 876293, firstname.lastname@example.org In a Frame - Individual framing training by a qualified GCF (Hertfordshire/Essex borders). Courses fully accredited by the Fine Art Trade Guild. Call Richard Williams GCF on 01279 260069, www.inaframe.co.uk Northern Framing School, Sheffield. Run by trainer and author Pete Bingham GCF. All aspects of framing, including GCF refresher courses and 4-day beginner course. 0114 245 1547 or email@example.com Royall Framing (Bristol). Individual or joint tuition is offered by Mike Royall who's been a GCF since 1994 and is the only framing trainer in the UK who’s also a qualified adult education teacher. All courses are fully accredited by the Fine Art Trade Guild. For more information visit www.royallframing.co.uk or call Mike on +44 (0)1454 617022 Sophie Brown Conservation Framing. Registered GCF tester in Australia. Individual tuition from basic to advanced framing. The emphasis is on conservation. www.conservationframing.com.au +61 2 9518 0624
Frame Design Annabelle Ruston
Guild Commended Framer Study Guide
Published by the Fine Art Trade Guild Researched, edited and compiled by Annabelle Ruston and Fiona Ryan GCF
The GCF Study Guide New from the Guild. Available as an e-book or spiral bound. Call 020 7381 6616 to order or visit fineart.co.uk
Conservation Framing Annabelle Ruston
GILDING COURSES An opportunity to create bespoke gilded frames. This 3-day intensive course is a practical introduction to water and oil gilding with an optional 4th day covering frame restoration. Venues: London, Salisbury, Oxford, Birmingham, Hastings & Nr Edinburgh. Contact Jan Pike 01424 754104 or 07973 732184
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Supported by Conservation by Design
A Fine Art Trade Guild publication
Conservation Framing by Annabelle Ruston is published by the Fine Art Trade Guild with the support of Conservation by Design. 128pp; paperback; colour photographs; £12.99 (£11 to members), plus £2 p+p. Order at fineart.co.uk or contact Moira Sanders on 020 7381 6616 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The indispensable part of every framer’s training Call Moira on 020 7381 6616 to order or visit fineart.co.uk
APRIL 2014 DEADLINE Please email copy to email@example.com by 14 March COST 30 words are £35 +VAT and 50p per word thereafter (free to Guild members) Box numbers cost £10 + VAT (Guild members £5 + VAT) Boxed classified ads cost £55 + VAT per 60mm (£40 + VAT to Guild members) PAYMENT Payment must be made before publication. Please call 020 7381 6616 with your credit or debit card details REPLYING TO A BOX AD Email your contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org and we forward your details to the advertiser January 2014 65
MARIE LEONARD More than 100 artists will take part in the tenth Art on the Street event in Maidenhead this summer. Co-founder Marie Leondard explains how this not-for-profit project has grown to include art installations, workshops and live performances
How did the show start? Early in 2009 Harriet Brittaine and I, who both work at Bovilles Art Shop in Maidenhead, were gloomily discussing how dead the town centre was, the empty shops and how several of our friends had laid out up to £1000 to exhibit at art fairs and had lost money. ‘Wouldn’t it be great to start our own art fair?’ said Harriet. That was our eureka moment. We’d recently received a letter from the new town centre manager, Steph James, so we got in touch asking if we could hold an art event along the high street. Steph came on board and we were soon joined by local artists and
Marketing is the most timeconsuming aspect of running the show. I designed our website using Weebly and social media is essential
community activists Pamela Clark and Stephanie Gay. The first Art on the Street show was held on a Friday and Saturday in December 2009. How did the first show go? We networked and promoted like mad but it was hard work to get 40 artists to take part. We charged £30, which covered printing and admin costs, and we supplied artists with Heras Fencing (supplied by a local builder) on which to hang their work. We borrowed gazebos from everyone we could think of. We designed our own marketing material. We received a £250 donation from the Firestation Centre for Arts in Windsor which we used to rent an empty shop, which became the first pop-up shop in Maidenhead. The show went better than we 66 January 2014
The team behind Art on the Street. From left: Stephanie Gay; Harriet Brittaine; Steph James; Marie Leonard
could ever have imagined. We did a good job of shouting about the event and our artists made loads of sales. A full-page story in Artists & Illustrators magazine resulted in us getting all the artists we could ever need on board, from all over the UK. What happened next? Art on the Street quickly became an established bi-annual event, taking place in May and December. 120 artists exhibited last summer. We exhibit along the high street, in empty shops and in the shopping centre. The show now encompasses painting workshops, live music, street food, demos and interactive art experiences. We introduced music as a way of encouraging visitors to stay longer. A Thai restaurant asked if they could supply food and cafés starting giving discounts to our artists; we welcome mutually beneficial involvement with local retailers. You have a lot of sponsors . . . We enjoy reciprocal arrangements with a range of companies. Art material suppliers such as Winsor & Newton, Derwent and Pro Arte give us products which go into the goody bags we give our artists; these freebies more than cover our £30 booking fee. There are discount vouchers from local cafés and retailers too. Grayscale Design, a local graphic design firm, got in touch offering their help so we asked them to design our logo. Claires Court School approached us and they now sponsor the event and hold workshops, which means the workshops are free to attend. Acrylic paint supplier Liquitex wanted to do more than help with our
goody bags, so they sponsored street artist Philth (Phill Blake) to create a mural last summer. This attracted publicity and loads of young people watched the demo, which brought a new profile of visitor to the show. Sytner BMW supplied a car one year which visitors could have a go at decorating. Promethean World lent us two £10,000 interactive white boards, along with digital artist Paul Kercal and ArtRage software, and visitors created their own artwork. We work with the Berkshire Artists Network; their logo is on our marketing material and we communicate with their 400 artist members. You must be very busy . . . I still work full time at Bovilles and I have a five-year-old daughter. I am always using my iPad or iPhone; I update social media while queuing at the bank, answer emails at the school gates and sort out logistics while cooking tea. Art on the Street is a community interest company (CIC), which is a type of limited company, but (in the unlikely event that we fold the business) our assets belong to the community. Any profit we make goes into our events; part of our social enterprise commitment is affordability so we won’t be significantly increasing our booking fee or taking on paid staff to help with the workload. Marketing is the most timeconsuming aspect of running the show. I designed our website using Weebly, a free web design package, and I update the site. Social media is essential; we shout about Art on the Street, and so do all of our artists, sponsors and supporters. ■ artonthestreet.org.uk ART BUSINESS TODAY
â€œBesso are the most sophisticated fine art Insurance brokers. They understand our problems, such as valuing unique and rare items, and they minimise the hassle for the customer. Their product and service are better than their competitors, and their price is equal or lower, so switching my insurance to Besso was a no-brainerâ€? John Brandler Brandler Galleries holding an original by Mary Fedden with Banksy , Pure Evil , Nick Walker and David Tindle
Besso is the Fine Art Trade Guild recommended broker The Trade Association for the Art and Framing Industry
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