As a custom framer, I love that my profession allows me to use both sides of my brain. And as the owner of my own shop – SB Framing Gallery in Milwaukee, Wisconsin – I relish the daily opportunity to be creative in crafting a product, while also using math and puzzle-solving to pull off projects both large and small.
On my way to winning awards during Tru Vue® Framing Competitions over the years, I’m proud of the reputation that I’ve earned in the industry for my aesthetic design process of using neutral tones to complement each piece – and injecting some whimsy, when called for – while still keeping the style simple and elegant to ensure that the artwork remains the focus.
I also find preservation to be a very important element in my treatment of artwork and try to offer the best handling of each piece, along with the best service I can provide.
It took vision to actually use the idea of vision to showcase the theme for the 2nd Annual Tru Vue Framing Competition – “The Difference is Easy to See.”
Contestants were tasked with creating a display using Museum Glass®, and for my entry – “The Eyes Have It” – I started thinking about how every once in a while I would get calls from customers for eyeglass frames instead of picture frames. I thought a play on words would make for a fun display project.
To evoke the notion of sight and insight, I purchased eyeglass frames from different eras – including even a pair of opera glasses – and then created my own eye test chart to bring the ultra-clarity and anti-reflective qualities of Museum Glass into the conversation.
To achieve this goal, I used a shadowbox, the very name of which suggests the play between light and dark and the importance of eliminating reflection. The challenge was to bring clarity to dark interiors to fully reveal the detail of the objects being presented. The shadowbox was intended to not merely preserve items but to transform them into an artistic statement of meaning, shape and presentation, all fully on display thanks to Museum Glass.
I created the shadowbox in neutral tones to bring notice to the different frame styles and different depths. And the finished piece really does work well as a selling device for Museum Glass, shadowboxes and elegant, simple design.
The Eyes Have It
At my shop, this project hangs right above the order counter and is my go-to piece for selling customers on Museum Glass. Visitors to my shop immediately are drawn to the eyeglasses and laugh while trying to read the exam chart.
Museum Glass was the right choice for the shadowbox to protect the different eyeglasses in this piece. Glass is not as permeable as Plexiglass, so with the 99% UV Protection provided by Museum Glass, it helps keep the metal and plastic of the eye frames safer from sunlight, as well as air deterioration.
“The Eyes Have It” truly is a conversation piece, and many customers have wanted to purchase it. The project is so clear thanks to Museum Glass that people do not believe there even is glass on the piece, and they’d be reaching out to touching the shadowbox for proof if the piece wasn’t hanging so high in my store. Now, that’s truly “Raising Your Glass.”
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This article is intended for educational purposes only and does not replace independent professional judgment. Statements of fact and opinions expressed are those of the author(s) individually and, unless expressly stated to the contrary, are not the opinion or position of Tru Vue or its employees. Tru Vue does not endorse or approve, and assumes no responsibility for, the content, accuracy or completeness of the information presented.