A Frame-Maker’s Journal

TimHolton writingUpdates and ruminations on our work and mission to revive the art and craft of framing pictures. Here I'll show you new jobs we're especially proud of and keep you up on what's going on at the Gallery, as well as discuss topics germane to our work, including handcraft and work generally, the place of art, and ideals of the Arts and Crafts Movement (especially its greatest leaders, John Ruskin and William Morris).

I hope you’ll subscribe (see the form in the left column) or at least check back often. And I welcome your comments!

—Tim Holton

Framing Another Gene Kloss Etching

Posted on March 1st, 2021

A year ago I posted a lovely 1930’s landscape etching by Berkeley printmaker Gene Kloss (1903-1996), called “Desert Clouds” (at right). Here’s another one by her, below. Titled “Arid Land,” it’s about 6″ x 11″. The m... continue reading.

Framing Harvey Otis Young

Posted on February 22nd, 2021

Here’s a wonderful example of the work of Harvey Otis Young (1840-1901). As a very young man Otis came to California to mine for gold. This oil on panel, which measures 7-3/4″ x 15″, was painted in 1869 at Half Moon Bay. We framed it in our No. 448—2... continue reading.

A Frame With a Nod to a Chairmaker

Posted on February 9th, 2021

My friend Jim Whitaker painted this 12″ x 16″ watercolor for a mutual friend, who asked me to frame it. The image includes a beloved family heirloom Victorian chair. The painting is simple and asked for nothing more in the way of a setting than a nice neutra... continue reading.

Framing Jan Schmuckal’s Art of Protection and Prospect

Posted on February 8th, 2021

Illinois artist Jan Schmuckal’s beautiful oil painting, “Wild Lilies” (2014, 24″ x 36″) offers a great example of the compositional principle of protection and prospect that is key to how frames work with pictures—which made my job of des... continue reading.

A Kobe Leaf Frame for an Ohara Koson Woodblock

Posted on February 7th, 2021

As part of the modern Japanese print movement known as shin hanga, Ohara Koson is not as well known as Hiroshi Yoshida or Kawase Hasui. I for one couldn’t tell you why—and I can’t get enough of those other two guys. Certainly in subject-matter, he was an u... continue reading.

Framing Charles Warren Eaton

Posted on February 5th, 2021

Our friends at California Historical Design are offering this lovely oil, “Entrance to the Woods, Bloomfield NJ” (ca. 1910), by the significant East Coast tonalist painter Charles Warren Eaton (1857-1937). We framed the 16″ x 12″ painting in a 3&... continue reading.

A Lover’s War: Framing James Baldwin

Posted on February 1st, 2021

Here’s a recent job to commemorate the first day of Black History Month. This 13″ x 6″ portrait of James Baldwin (1924-1987) is a print of a painting by Carl Grauer. (See that original at right. The artist obviously understands the importance of frames... continue reading.

Framing Kim Lordier for Beloved California V

Posted on January 2nd, 2021

It seems to me that every time I see Kim Lordier she has just gotten back from another corner of California where she has taken her passion for painting her native state—or where her passion has taken her. Whether it’s in a eucalyptus grove on the Peninsula, on ... continue reading.

Framing Robert Flanary for Beloved California V

Posted on December 28th, 2020

One day in the last century a painter showed up at the studio with a batch of canvases. He was in town from Spokane, Washington, and his name was Robert Flanary. Robert explained that in addition to being an artist, he dealt in antiques from the American Arts and Crafts... continue reading.