A common question I often receive when someone buys one of my original watercolors is how to frame them. It’s important to consider that watercolor is a delicate medium that can fade when exposed to light. That's why I always spray my artworks with UV protection. However, there are additional steps you can take to further extend the life of your original pieces.

In my garden studio, filled with natural light, framing my artworks has been both inspiring and challenging. One of the key obstacles I’ve faced is minimizing reflections on my pieces while ensuring they’re protected from UV damage. In this blog post, I’ll share practical tips on how to achieve both goals effectively.

Standar acrylic vs anti-glare acrylic, tips for framing your watercolors.
On the left, my watercolor 'Sunflowers, Two Bumble Bees, and the Moon' is framed with the standard acrylic that came with the frame. On the right, I purchased anti-glare acrylic in the size of my frame and swapped it out. Both photos were taken on the same wall in my garden studio. See what a difference it makes!

Understanding the Glare Issue:

Natural and artificial light can create reflections on glass, which can distract from your artwork’s beauty. It’s frustrating when you can’t see your art clearly due to glare bouncing off the frame. This can be especially problematic when exhibiting your art—potential collectors should be able to view your art with total clarity.

Tips to Minimize Glare:

Opt for Anti-Glare Glass: Using anti-reflective materials is a game-changer. They’re designed to cut down on glare, letting you enjoy your art without distractions. It’s like having a clear view into your creative world.

Strategic Placement Matters: Think about where you hang your art. Avoid spots where sunlight hits directly. Angling your frames away from light sources can make a big difference in reducing reflections.

Keep It Clean: Regularly cleaning your glass or acrylic keeps reflections at bay. A quick wipe with a soft cloth and a mild, non-abrasive cleaner ensures your art shines through, not the glare.

Protecting Your Art from UV Rays: UV protection isn’t just for sunscreen—it keeps your art vibrant too. UV-resistant glass or acrylic shields your pieces from sunlight, preserving their color.

Anti-glare acrylic with UV protection, the perfect solution for spaces with a lot of light.
Botanical Moon Art by Ingrid Sanchez.
This wall in my studio posed the most challenge because it has two windows and a large door, allowing in a lot of light. The anti-glare acrylic with UV protection turned out to be the perfect solution. Explore my collection of original art here!

Glass and Acrylic

When looking for UV glazing options, you will find two main choices:

Museum Glass: This offers professional-grade UV protection but can be quite expensive and fragile.

Acrylic: This is what I always use in my studio and for exhibitions. It is more affordable and safer than museum glass.

TIP: Something I often do is buy a frame I like that usually comes with standard acrylic, then I purchase anti-glare acrylic in the size of my frame and swap it out. I find this to be an affordable way to frame my art without breaking the bank.

Watch my YouTube video: Learn how to effectively frame watercolors with anti-reflective acrylic to minimize glare and protect your artwork.

Framing your art isn’t just about making it look good; it’s about ensuring you can enjoy it without distractions. By choosing the right materials and considering how light interacts with your space, you can showcase your art in the best possible light—literally.

July 01, 2024 — Ingrid Sanchez

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