A couple of my own framed artworks...

Jin Wicked

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2
Jul 14, 2002
Houston, TX
Unfortunately because of the fact that I work in a chain store, and very few of my customers trust me enough to spend several hundred dollars on something they have no idea what I'm talking about when I describe it, I don't get to do very many exotic framing jobs. I do get them sometimes though. I recently bought a disposable camera and left it at work for photographing anything particularly neat that I do.

These are just a couple of my own mat designs. Both of them were framed in "oops" frames that I didn't chop down or anything, so I reverse engineered the image size and did the artwork to fit the frame.

The genie is coloured pencil, ink and paint and the top mat is Baroque black (I think), the bottom mat is wine suede. The tree drawings are ink on natural paper and the top mat is one of those leather-textured paper mats, 4-ply ebony on bottom.

I was hoping to do some more complicated stuff, but they aren't letting me use the matcutter off the clock much any more, which is seriously hampering my creativity. I can afford to buy one of the cutters we have at work to use at home, but I have no place to put it. :(

Comments welcome...



Jin, Very nice indeed. I especially appreciate that you have given me the correct name , "reverse engineering," to describe a process I have used for years and one which I try to sell to artists ALL THE TIME. You know, "Buy the frame since you love it so much, and make some artwork to fit it! Don't you dare make me cut a mat which is 2" on the top and bottom and 1/2" on the sides!!!" Artists drive me crazy!

I actually have a new artist now who is buying readymade frames and actually making art to fit both the size and the style of the frame. Gotta love it!!!

Just think, Jin, when you become a rich famous artist we here on the Grumble will be able to say, "Wow, we knew her when she was still working in that frame shop!" Your artwork is magnificent.
Thank you for the compliments!

I feel like a little mouse sometimes in that I am always saving and taking home the scraps or buying up the cheap oops frames from mismeasures or small scratch and dents we can't recut, just kind of living off the scraps of this big corporate behemoth. Everyone in Houston and possibly Texas up to my DM in Colorado knows about it, so I guess I'm just such small fry that they don't care.They all read my LiveJournal and it caused quite a weird situation when I ranted about my boss recently, though the DM actually did something about the situation and never directly mentioned it to me. There is another frame shop that can do chops down near to my store, too, and they will usually make me a deal on cutting down my mouldings if I break them down ahead of time and bring in several at a time.

I often do artwork to match a frame moulding that I like, I'm so terrible about not wanting to see things get thrown in the trash that some of them I've bought are really hard for me to do something my styles go with. Most of my paintings look best in contemporary black, so I'm not hard to match.

As a framer I do know what you mean about artists -- I'm at an advantage because I know what to do and what not to do, but some of these guys drive me up the wall myself. I really hate it when one of them brings in their own work and when I tell them why I can't do what they want (mat a painting, smoosh glass on a stretched canvas, etc) and they try to argue with me and tell me they know, they're an artist, I of course have to explain that I am too and that I've also been framing for over five years and they haven't.

I'm curious, do you have a problem with unvarnished paintings? We get a lot of amateur/hobbyist artwork in our shop, and I'm always really disturbed by the amount of work that comes in with no finish on it at all. It's especially disheartening when someone brings in some old, dirt, dust and oil covered painting that is going to be a nightmare to restore because it was never varnished properly. I find myself giving 'lessons' at least three times a week to some sweet old lady giving a painting to her grandkids that she did with the intention of them having it their whole lives.

I work in a strange place. Sorry for getting so off-topic.
I think I should add that as far as making something to match the frame, I cut the mats for the genie artwork before I had even coloured it.
Jin! You are an artist in more than the usual sense of the word! Your framing looks great, and, shows originality, as well as taste and insight, as does your art!

Good for you! Show us more!
Well you can always visit my website if you want to see my paintings. ;) The URL to the art galleries directly is http://www.jinwicked.com/en/art/

I just posted those two because they had mats and everything. It doesn't take much to put something in a frame with no mats or glass... though most of my paintings, especially the ones in non-black frames, were actually done to match the frame, not the frame picked out to match the art after the fact.

I will post some more when I do another piece with matting, though. I have four paintings that are all in various stages of completion right now, though, so those come first!
I have to say, Jin, that is very nice work! Your art technique and the subject matter, particularly the genie, are right up my alley as favorites. I used to lurk in the bookstores around the Space Fantasy section just to look at the new covers of a Fantasy artist whose name escapes me this early in the morning. Vikings and gorgeous female warriors mounted on "steeds" that resembled dinosaurs with fangs or such doing battle on some far out asteroid or barren planet with 3 red suns. I marvelled at his imagination to conjur up these fantasy images and have them look so realistic!

Regarding your genie piece, did you do the 2 small openings on each side of the lamp to show a part of the art or for decoration? I cannot tell from the photo what is in those openings.

Again, a very good job and nice utilization of materials that somebody else would have trashed. I would be happy to donate about a pickup truck load of moulding shorts and small mat board pieces to your endeavors if you were closer. I cannot get any of the local school programs to take them for free! And I just hate to toss all that "good" moulding and mat board into the dumpster!

Framerguy, resident packrat, TTWG
Thanks... the little openings on the bottom of the genie are just decorative. I cut strips of the top mat and then chopped off two 1/4" squares and adhered them to the bottom mat, so you just see more of the suede matting underneath. I did the little bottle to put underneath the genie, they're on two seperate boards. I had the whole thing in a show here, but most of the visitors are old ladies and housewives and so predictably it wasn't sold.

Now I wish I did live closer, I'd offer to trade you some custom art for little scrap frames. ;) I love 8x10s and smaller because I can finish them quickly and usually get a decent price. Matboard is cheap and they don't mind giving me scraps, it's the cutting part that's the pain. I can't wait until I can finally buy a house to convert to a studio and have room to set up my own shop.
Great work, Jin,
You are obviously a talented, original artist, and a good framer, to boot. I have noticed that most of the really successful artists I have known have been "personalities" and also good self-promoters, and I think you fall squarely into that catagory. I think you have a grasp of the marketing thing, and your website is great. I fully expect yuo to be famous, and we can all say "wow! she used to be on a framer's forum with us! You GO, GIRL!

(An old ex-housewife who WOULD buy your art!)
Thanks, I hope you are right. ;)
One of the more unique and interesting web-sites I've seen in a long, long time! Congratulations - everyone should take a look. Your creativity and personality SHINE.
Oh good, maybe they'll forgive me for the bubblegum paper backing thing, then...

(You really need an evil smiley face for me.)