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Shipping a picture

Shipping a picture

Old Dec 30th 2009, 9:02 am
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Default Shipping a picture

Hi all,

Most of my things were shipped to the USA some time ago, all thats left now will be about 5 boxes of mostly clothes, I'll be using UPS, Fedex or similar but...........

I have a framed pastel picture which I love, the picture itself is 30 x 22 inches, with the frame its 43 x 35 inches, it was valued at £1895. in 2001.

I have been to a few removal / storage / packaging companies who don't stock anything big enough to ship it with.

I'm worried about taking it out of the frame and having it rolled as it's a pastel I of course know nothing about art, so maybe it's doable? i don't mind leaving the frame behind.

Does anyone have any advice on the best (and cheapest) way of getting it over there.

Thanks, Tracey.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 12:49 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

The best way will not be the cheapest way. Check with places like DHL, FedEx, UPS, etc and also check in with local art galleries and shops. I have 3 or 4 large pictures I want sent over but the cost to do it is more than they are worth but with your picture at a couple of grand, the cost for you to do it will be well worth it!
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 1:57 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

How about PMing dbj1000. With his wife being an artist she may have an good idea of who to use
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 3:06 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Thanks both, i'll try the PM and UPS (doubt if I'll like the quote Though!)
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 3:21 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Originally Posted by traceym View Post
Hi all,

Most of my things were shipped to the USA some time ago, all thats left now will be about 5 boxes of mostly clothes, I'll be using UPS, Fedex or similar but...........

I have a framed pastel picture which I love, the picture itself is 30 x 22 inches, with the frame its 43 x 35 inches, it was valued at £1895. in 2001.

I have been to a few removal / storage / packaging companies who don't stock anything big enough to ship it with.

I'm worried about taking it out of the frame and having it rolled as it's a pastel I of course know nothing about art, so maybe it's doable? i don't mind leaving the frame behind.

Does anyone have any advice on the best (and cheapest) way of getting it over there.

Thanks, Tracey.
I ship artwork once, sometimes even twice, a week via Fedex. It's much easier to send it unframed. For work on paper, I use the 10" or 12" x 4' cardboard tubes sold at Home Depot for making concrete pillars. Cut them to size with a hacksaw, leaving 4" at either end, and cut a closure for both ends from cardboard and seal well with packing tape. The rolled work quickly recovers if laid out flat with something to weight it down (not to heavy) at the other end -- I use a sheet of cardboard over it and some light books.

I'm presuming the pastel has been fixed to the paper by the artist with varnish. If not, this method will not work and you'll have to make up suitable packaging for the framed piece.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 3:28 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Originally Posted by fatbrit View Post
I

I'm presuming the pastel has been fixed to the paper by the artist with varnish. If not, this method will not work and you'll have to make up suitable packaging for the framed piece.
Yes, see this is the bit I'm worried about, I was told by the artist 'dust' from the picture may settle on the bottom of the frame over time. This of course leads me to think rolling it will result in a 'smudged mush' at the other end. As you can see I have no idea about art! I just love the picture!

Perhaps calling the local framer (nationwide reputation and prices to match) and offering a deal on getting him to package it if he wants to keep the frame could save some money?

Thanks folks.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 3:31 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

There might be some info of use in here:
http://britishexpats.com/forum/showthread.php?t=629133
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 3:35 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Originally Posted by traceym View Post
Yes, see this is the bit I'm worried about, I was told by the artist 'dust' from the picture may settle on the bottom of the frame over time. This of course leads me to think rolling it will result in a 'smudged mush' at the other end. As you can see I have no idea about art! I just love the picture!

Perhaps calling the local framer (nationwide reputation and prices to match) and offering a deal on getting him to package it if he wants to keep the frame could save some money?

Thanks folks.
Yep -- doesn't sound like it was varnished. It's going to be a royal PITA to get it over here. Plenty of bubble wrap and the discarded cardboard packing from a flat screen tv are my current thoughts.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 4:20 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Originally Posted by traceym View Post
Hi all,

Most of my things were shipped to the USA some time ago, all thats left now will be about 5 boxes of mostly clothes, I'll be using UPS, Fedex or similar but...........

I have a framed pastel picture which I love, the picture itself is 30 x 22 inches, with the frame its 43 x 35 inches, it was valued at £1895. in 2001.

I have been to a few removal / storage / packaging companies who don't stock anything big enough to ship it with.

I'm worried about taking it out of the frame and having it rolled as it's a pastel I of course know nothing about art, so maybe it's doable? i don't mind leaving the frame behind.

Does anyone have any advice on the best (and cheapest) way of getting it over there.

Thanks, Tracey.
Don't know if this is even possible, but what if you wait until you are next in the UK and return with it as extra baggage?
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 5:00 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Awwwwwwwwwwww it's going to cost is the bottom line, thanks everyone, I'll call UPS, the framer and Mr Branson (well one of his people!) It is way too big to be excess baggage though, nice idea!
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 5:38 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Originally Posted by traceym View Post
I'm worried about taking it out of the frame and having it rolled as it's a pastel I of course know nothing about art, so maybe it's doable? i don't mind leaving the frame behind.
Why not contact your local art gallery or college/university art department and see what they recommend? I've shipped many large, framed pictures with UPS and each has arrived safely, no damage whatsoever. The best way will *not* be cheap... so it depends on how much the picture is worth to you!

Ian
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 5:51 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

I worked at a frame shop a few years ago, and I know what you mean about the pastel dust lifting off, smudging, etc. Framing pastel artwork was always a pain in the ass for that very reason!

There is a spray that can be applied to the artwork to help prevent the pastel from smudging. It's invisible, and although it's not completely foolproof, it does help. We always advised the customer to either apply it themselves or have the original artist do it; we couldn't on the off-chance that we messed it up somehow, we didn't want to be held liable.

I can't think of what that fixative's called right now, but you could probably Google it. I agree, talk to an art gallery, and art school/college or even an experience pastel artist for advice. Once you've applied this spray fixative, I would carefully roll it up and bring it with you in a tube.

EDITED TO ADD: I did some googling and found the following, which you might find helpful:

Care and Framing of Pastels -- They mention the fixative and recommend putting a layer of wax paper over the pastel artwork before rolling it up (which reminded me that this is what we did in the frame shop, too!)

How to Apply Spray Fixative -- a DIY approach, just in case

Pastel Fixative -- more info about fixatives

~ Jenney

Last edited by Just Jenney; Dec 30th 2009 at 5:58 pm.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 5:52 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

http://www.wedelivertheworld.co.uk/index.php who trade under then name of “Fast Lane”.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 6:31 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

Originally Posted by Jenney & Mark View Post

There is a spray that can be applied to the artwork to help prevent the pastel from smudging. It's invisible, and although it's not completely foolproof, it does help. We always advised the customer to either apply it themselves or have the original artist do it; we couldn't on the off-chance that we messed it up somehow, we didn't want to be held liable.
The Fixer is just the cheapest own brand hair spray that's been repackaged...it's what everyone at uni used to save money when fixing pastel/pencil work.

Mare to not make a mess getting picture out of the frame though.
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Old Dec 30th 2009, 8:43 pm
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Default Re: Shipping a picture

It looks like you've received excellent advice here already. Alison recommends using a commercial artist-grade spray fixative for pastels, but we agree with everyone here who says that getting the artwork out of its frame if it's not been fixed already carries some risk.

I think your best bet is probably paying to have it shipped in its frame - sorry if that's going to cost you a fortune!
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