Don't ruin the perfect picture or the perfect work of art with a lousy frame. Steve's Digicams, a consumer source for digital camera information and news, gives some basic suggestions for choosing the perfect picture frame.
The frame needs to complement the photograph or work of art. This sounds like common sense—something that shouldn't need to be included in a list of how to find the perfect picture frame. But it does. It's easy to get caught up in the niceness of the frame without taking into account the item it's going to surround. Think of the frame as an accessory. Its purpose is to bring out certain elements of the picture. In some cases, you may wish to upgrade the quality of the picture or artwork to match the niceness of the frame.
The frame shouldn't overshadow the picture. This goes hand in hand with the first rule. An elaborate frame might draw too much attention. A frame three times bigger than the picture might dominate the art instead of complementing it. Conservative is usually better. Less is often more.
The frame should match the event. If your picture or work of art is on the creative side, an artsy frame may make a more suitable frame. A creative piece of art deserves a creative frame (as long as it doesn't overshadow it). A simple work of art deserves a simple frame. If the item being framed marks an important event, the frame should be more prominent than other frames in the house.
The frame should match the room. Choosing the correct frame is contextual. The room in which the frame is located is part of the context. Regardless of how great the photo or artwork is, chances are that its purpose is to enhance the look of a particular room. The frame, therefore, must complement the decor and colors in the room.
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