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4 Reasons to Add Acrylic Framing to Your Art Business

Are you an artist or do you sell artwork for others? The right materials to frame and present art is key to protecting its purpose and its value. And today, more and more artists and sellers are use acrylic sheets rather than traditional wood frames with a glass covering. Why? Because acrylic sheets have several benefits. Here are a few key advantages of this up-to-date choice.

1. Acrylic Is Lighter

Regular glass is heavy, which can cause trouble on several fronts. First, glass covers add weight during shipping and can increase costs significantly. If you do regular business through online sales, these expenses might add up very quickly. Secondly, if you travel with any artwork to shows, exhibits, fairs, or conventions, you'll want to keep your gear as light and comfortable as possible. Larger framed pieces (especially those larger than 16 by 20 inches) will be much easier to move around if covered with lightweight acrylic rather than a plate of protective glass. Finally, heavy glass can actually be a detriment to hanging artwork because its weight puts the art at risk of falling. Heavy, large paintings or other art pieces need special heavy-duty hanging tools and the right wall types, which makes them more difficult to display properly.

2. Acrylic Protects Art Better

If your framed art is involved in an accident such as a fall, you want to minimize the damage. But an accident involving a glass sheet could be catastrophic for the canvas art underneath, as shards cut and tear at the delicate fabric. Glass might even be a liability issue if anyone is injured when a piece of glass breaks. Acrylic is designed to withstand accidents and falls. Even if the artwork isn't damaged, a thicker acrylic barrier helps keep the environment — temperature, UV penetration, and moisture — more steady than a smaller piece of traditional glass placed in the frame. Valuable or historically significant pieces need durable protection from their frames.

3. Acrylic Doesn't Alter Art

Glass may appear to be completely transparent to most laypersons, but it actually does change the view of art behind it. Why? Most glass has a significant iron content, which lends a greenish hue to the materials or art underneath. This effect can be very subtle, but it will alter the appearance of a painting or photo underneath.

Another advantage of acrylic coverings is how much light they let in through the material. Glass lets about 80 percent of incoming light pass through, but acrylics often allow an additional 10 percent more light to pass. This additional light can make a big difference when you display detailed paintings, historical documents, or older photos.

4. Acrylic Offers Options

Modern artists and photographers often want to use the framing as part of the expression of their works. If you always use the old standard of glass and a wood frame, though, you have little room for creativity.

Acrylics, however, can be molded and shaped into custom designs that better fit the artist's vision or the artwork's peculiar style, which results in a visually arresting and unique setting. You could opt, for instance, for a no frame appearance by encasing the entire work in clear acrylic that both protects it and highlights it in a visually arresting manner. While more traditional frames do offer some flexibility, they have more limitations. Both glass and acrylic sheets have their benefits as part of a frame. But the advantages that acrylic offers in terms of protection, cost savings, and design options often tips the scales in its favor. Learn more by calling the acrylic experts at MGM Plastics today. Our design professionals can help you decide if you should add acrylic materials to your art business and how to make the most of them.


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