Monday, February 23, 2015

Framing Scratchboard Art - Glass or No Glass?

Last week I wrote about sealing a scratchboard with protective spray finish. Now I'd like to cover framing. If you put enough coats of fixative on the board, you can frame without glass. This is a huge plus for me. Glass is heavy and expensive, and if it breaks it will scratch your board up. That being said, you may choose to use glass, and that's fine, too - only make sure that the board does not touch the glass. Why might someone choose glass? I have a portrait of one of my cats I framed behind glass. I keep it on a wall next to the kitchen, which tends to get food or smoke particles airborne (particularly broiled meats). It is much easier for me to clean that stuff off the glass than a naked board. I had a couple purchase a board I had framed without glass, and they chose to add glass because their dog was prone to jumping around and they didn't want it damaged that way.

Now let's look at the flip side. Glass may be easier to clean, but sprayed boards are pretty resilient. They are essentially waterproof, so all that is needed is a lightly damp cloth (not paper towel, because that will leave paper towel dust all over it). But perhaps the best reason that I prefer no glass is, quite simply, you can see the drawing better! I float my boards in the center of an off-white mat (if it is a color piece I might choose a different mat) with a simple black wood moulding. This way, you can see the whole board, sides and all, which makes it more like a painting on canvas than a drawing. It stands out, and makes you want to touch it. In fact, last fall I participated in the local studio tour, many of my visitors made that very comment.

Below are two photographs of my framed work. The first is behind glass, the second is not. For best comparison, both pieces are the same size, photographed on the same wall in the same light conditions. Ultimately, the choice is yours.

framed with regular glass

framed without glass

closeup of frame without glass

No comments: