A Frame Is a Kind of Flower

Here’s a beautiful little rose painting we just finished framing. It’s by Daniel Keys. It’s pretty nearly impossible to frame pictures the way we do without taking the time to really see the picture. Making the right frame—which means a frame that is alive to the picture—absolutely depends on close attention and consideration. This is, of course, only an extension of the artist’s and the customer’s admiration for the painting and its subject matter.


Daniel Keys (b. 1985), oil on board, 8″ x 12″

For suitable refinement and color, cherry suggested itself, stained dark to match the shadows in the picture; and a slim gilt slip alive to the sunlight kissing the flower. The frame is is 2-3/4″ wide and slopes slightly (at 6 degrees), with a shallow cove at the outside to a concave outer element. To come up with this shape, I couldn’t help focusing on the form of the petals. When we really see something we always gain a deeper understanding, and thus a new understanding. I had never thought of it before, even after all these years as a framer, but in considering how to frame this picture it dawned on me that a frame is a kind of flower. The sides are like petals. Frames focus our eyes and entice us in to something particular—like a flower captures the attention of a bee and narrows it in on its stigma and stamen.

More on Daniel Keys…

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