How to Properly Hang Your Artwork
Once you take your custom framed artwork home it’s time to hang it properly to maximise enjoyment for the longest time possible. Properly hung artwork combines concern for the safety of the artwork with the aesthetic concerns of lighting and visual balance within the room.
Care should be taken to hang the piece in an area where it will not become damaged by heat, ultra-violet light or humidity. Hang your artwork out of the line of direct sunlight. In sunny environments or in areas that are lit with fluorescent lighting, be sure to ask us about non-reflective glass or conservation quality glass that will filter out most of the harmful UV rays. Never hang your valuable artwork over a heat source or in an area that will be high in humidity (such as a steamy bathroom). Heat and humidity can cause serious damage to your art.
There are two basic lighting techniques available for your home; ambient “room” lighting or “spot” lighting. Domestic lighting is usually preferable for the home as it allows the work to blend in with the rest of the room. Spotlights in the other hand, make a piece “pop” – a nice touch for really special pieces. Spot lighting can be dramatic (using can lighting or light strips that affix to the wall or the frame itself) or subtle (using room lamps strategically places to give ample direct light to the piece). When using spotlights be careful not to create shadows by using strong lights on a deep frame. Remember to keep your wiring as “invisible” as possible.
Hang your artwork at the eye-level of the “average” person in the room. If you are hanging the art in a room where more time is spent seated than standing, “eye-level” should be lower.
Hang smaller, more detailed pieces in small spaces such as hallways and corridors where impact is less important than content the art can be enjoyed up close and personal.
Larger “atmospheric” pieces require more room for the viewer to stand back and enjoy them – hang these pieces opposite the entrance to a room or at the end of a corridor.
Make sure you use hooks that are suitable for the size and weight of the piece. We carry a range of hooks in the store and are happy to advise you on the suitable hook for your framed artwork. Use two hooks to hang anything larger than a 8” x 10”. When determining where to put the hooks use a carpenter’s level to ensure that the picture will hang straight. This will help distribute the picture’s weight more evenly and your picture will hang straight without constant vigilance!
Unless you are striving for an eclectic “antique shop” look, groupings should look as though they belong together. Select frame styles that are compatible and matting styles that will work well together to create a unified look to the group as a whole.
Spacing is an important element in a grouping. Each picture should be placed not too far from, nor to close to its neighbour.
The most commonly recommended way to create balance in a grouping is to lay the entire layout on the floor. This will allow you to get a sense of how the grouping will look on the wall as well as allow for adjustments and accurate measurement.
Another tip is to align the tops or bottoms of the various pictures in the group.
Below are some popular grouping techniques the should get you started. Try these simple layouts on the floor using your own pieces and don’t be afraid to experiment!