Last weekend I headed off to High Wycombe to pick up the DIY Framing van with all the materials and equipment I needed to teach two framing courses; The Basic of Framing and Mount Cutting and Decoration.  So many firsts! I hadn’t run either of these classes solo before and it had been some time since I last drove this kind of vehicle.  Ridiculously I was more concerned about driving the vehicle – M25, Friday afternoon traffic, finding my way and all that – than I was about teaching and managing the flow of teaching a Basics of Framing course.  It was good, I enjoyed the drive and made my way down to Hurstpierpoint, near Brighton to be ready to set up and teach on Saturday.

The two courses are offered by DIY Framing as a bundle for Photographers and Artists and can be taken separately or together.  In this instance I had 8 students for the basics and 3 for the mount cutting.  The great thing about doing the two together is that you get to practice what you learn on day one quite a bit on day 2 and so by the end of the weekend, those who’d completed both days were much more comfortable with the tools ands seem to leave more confident they’d be able to get started when they got home.

It’s a great weekend, on day one you do all the steps required to build a frame from scratch, from measuring the art, cutting the mount, moulding and glass, and assembling the frame. It’s very satisfying to leave the class with a completed project, ready to hang on the wall. Admittedly it’s a long day, made easier because it’s very interactive and the class seem to enjoy the progress made and all enjoyed the final results.

The second day focuses on cutting mounts.  We discuss the impact of colour and dimensions and look at the impact mounts can have on a piece of art.  Once again, it’s astonishing to see the impact a simple mount can have on a piece of art and the class all loved this.  They left on Sunday with a collection of mounted pieces they were delighted with.

I left, shattered and pleased that not too much blood was spilt! Given that we cut glass, use saws and other sharp instruments, this is a real possibility.

Back home and I’ve started to review some of the art we have on display.  My next project is to frame a few photographs I’ve had enlarged.  I have also been given a couple of shirts to frame.  These take quite a lot of work and so I may talk you though that at some point.  More on the latest projects next time.