07 Aug Reclaimed Wood and Weathered Wood Picture Frames
We’ve been framing our new HD Metal and Acrylic prints using reclaimed wood, some heavily weathered and some not. They’re included in the new set that I’m showing at the Liberty Fine Art Gallery this month. The framing techniques I’ve been employing for these frames are mostly ArtBox, Float, and Flush Mount. All three of these have a box style of framing in common, where the depth of the frame is typically wider than the edge width, contrary to the standard “old-fashioned” frame, resulting in a very modern look. I’ve also experimented with new and unique styles of framing, for example, where I’ve taken a flat weathered board about one foot by four feet, ripped it down the middle, and sandwiched the print in between. (Shown above.)
I really like the idea of reclaiming wood—reusing old wood rather than cutting down new trees for fresh wood. This is far more ecological and green, and to top it off results in a rustic charm and beauty that would be very difficult to reproduce using new wood. To be honest though, it does make framing much more challenging! The issue is that the old wood is usually warped and uneven, making working with it more difficult on precision sensitive applications like framing. But, I must also admit … it is worth it! Every time I see the finished product, I am just amazed at the magical synthesis of the old and new. How something so old and weathered can meld so beautifully with such a contemporary look.
I also employ the ancient Japanese technique of Shou Sugi Ban, the charring of wood, on certain pieces. This creates a jet black burnt look to the wood, and I prefer this technique over black stain. Firstly, there is one less outside element to add to the wood, therefore instead of adding to, we transform the wood. Secondly, it is quicker than putting several coats of stain on the wood. Thirdly, it produces a much deeper black than stain ever could. And, lastly, if charred long enough, it leaves ripple patterns reminiscent of crocodile skin for an even more exotic look.
One of the pieces was created out of an old picture frame that was made with Padauk or Padouk wood, a reddish orange tropical wood from Central Africa. The original frame had discolored and lost all of it’s natural red beauty. So we cut up the original frame into four sticks and planed the wood, removing layers of the old discolored material to reveal the amazingly bright color that Padauk is renowned for. The result looked absolutely stunning! So in this case, we repurposed the old standard flat style frame into a new contemporary ArtBox frame while reinvigorating the beautiful Padauk wood.
Reclaimed wood and weathered wood framed art is a great match for log cabins and mountain homes. This style of wall art works especially well when used in modern-rustic interior design either as an accent or a center piece.
I’m definitely looking forward to creating many more of these charming frames for my photography and I’ll be gradually adding these one-of-a-kind pieces to my shop in the coming months, so keep an eye out …