Need help in framing original poster

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Deepak Shenoy, Jul 9, 2001.

  1. Deepak Shenoy

    Deepak Shenoy Supporting Actor

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    I saw a number of threads discussing framing of movie posters, but the posters in question are usually modern reprints with very little collectible value. In that case any cheap frame would do. Does anyone here have experience getting an original poster (that could appreciate in value quite considerably over the next few years) framed ?
    I happened to pick up a poster of my favorite 70's flick 'Chinatown' on e-bay. The artwork on this poster is truly exquisite (IMHO) for a poster from the 70's. Here's a picture - http://www.filmsite.org/posters/chin.jpg . I got a surprisingly good deal on an original poster in almost pristine condition. However, it seems that it is going to cost me an arm and a leg to get it framed. Of course, I am looking at a "conservation" frame and after some research on the web, I figured that I need UV-resistant plexi-glass to prevent fading over time, acid-free foamcore backing, acid-free matting to keep the poster from touching the plexi, and a frame (any basic frame would do, I guess).
    I have been making the rounds of all the local framing stores and their estimates for the materials alone run into several hundred dollars (which exceeds what I paid for the poster on e-bay). I am thinking of buying all the materials separately and putting the frame together myself. I guess I could get the frame from any online place, but getting the plexi, foamcore, etc shipped could be a hassle.
    If anyone else has had experience putting together a "conservation" frame on your own, please share your information here. Any suggestions will be highly appreciated. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. James D S

    James D S Screenwriter

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    Deepak,
    Give the guys at ShowOff Displays a call. Tell Rick what you intend to do and he will no doubt be glad to help with your custom job. With his help, you could no doubt put together a frame that meets your needs and has all the snazzy 'Now Showing' headers (if that's your cup of tea) that help touch up a movie poster for HT use.
     
  3. Peter Apruzzese

    Peter Apruzzese Producer

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    Yes, be careful framing a vintage poster. The absolute number one thing NOT TO DO is have it dry-mounted to the foamcore (or anything else, for that matter; unless you get it linen-backed). This will not only hurt the collectibility of the poster but will cause irreversible damage.
     
  4. Parker Clack

    Parker Clack Schizophrenic Man
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    Deepak:
    Definitely give Rick at Show Off Displays a call. He can set you up with a custom frame with a glass front and still beat the price of most places.
    Tell him the guys at HTF told you to stop by and he might cut you a break on the price.
    Let us know what you decide to do.
    Parker
     
  5. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Screenwriter

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    Okay, I'm afraid I get to put in a shameless plug for where I work, here....
    Call the Smithsonian Institution.
    Either call the SI Center for Materials Research and Education, or some of the individual museums and their exhibition people.
    I know where I work at the National Museum of American History (shameless plug #2,) we have a number of people trained in the mounting of, as well as a fairly elaborate paper conservation laboratory..
    The short form is what we affectionately call "back and wrap."
    This, of course, assumes that you have a clean area to work in.
    Step 1: spread out a largish piece of Mylar film; perhaps 6 to 8 inches larger on all sides of the poster.
    Step 2: Place the poster, face down, on the Mylar, centered. (Remember, you will have 6-8" margins all around.)
    Step 3: Place a piece of acid-free mounting board / poster board / whatever board cut to the size of the poster (or perhaps a quarter of an inch margin all around the poster,) on the back of the poster.
    Step 4: Take and fold the excess Mylar around the back of the mounting board and tape it down.
    Note: This is the exact technique we use on small stuff. There are other considerations that I don't know for mounting large stuff that might 'sag' under its own weight -- like a poster.
    Note 2: This technique, as you should have seen, does not involve any adhesive materials or anything like that attached to the poster itself.
    Note 3: SI's Center for Materials Research and Education is charged to take public requests for information in a timely and serious fashion.
    Their web-page, ishttp://www.si.edu/scmre/
    Their paper based conservation page is centered athttp://www.si.edu/scmre/glpaper.html
    There are e-mail links to their Technical Information Office, as well.
    And if you have any troubles with this information, I can e-mail you the e-mail and phone number of our "Queen of Back-n-Wrap."
    Leo Kerr
    [email protected]
    providing semi-unofficial and non-profit information on behalf of where I work,
    Smithsonian Institution
    National Museum of American History, Behring Center
    Exhibits and Audio Visual Services Group
     
  6. TimG

    TimG Second Unit

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    It shouldn't be that hard to find acid-free matboard and foamcore. I know that Micheals and Hobby Lobby both usually carry them. Just make sure you get real matboard, not the real flimsy cardboard stuff. Have them cut the mat for you. You should have about $25 worth of material including the mat cutting. Find whatever frame you fancy, make sure you get the dimensions of the frame before they cut the matboard. Personally I wouldn't worry about uv-resistant glass, unless you are hanging it in the sun. I have some pieces my lithography teacher in college gave me that have normal glass and show no signs of fading after 30 or so years. (They are ones he did in the 70's) Plexi is easily scratched if you are not careful when you clean it. Leo's suggestion is a good one also, although I have a feeling it will sag over time.
    Tim
     
  7. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Screenwriter

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    the sagging issue is one of the reasons why I think you should check with either the professionals or their web-site to see what they say for details. Most of the stuff we have (at least that I deal with,) is in the range of a regular sheet of paper size.
    Once you have it 'backed and wrapped,' you can then mount it in most anything. Avoid materials that outgas.
    As for light and fading, UV light is bad. Not only does it fade inks, but it also helps make paper brittle. (I think. I'm not wearing my SI cap here [​IMG] )
    For light levels, archival recommendations are for dark storage, of course. Dark storage, however, is boring. For long periods of light exposure - like our 8 hours/day, 364 days a year, the recommended light level is in the neighborhood of 3-5 footcandles.
    Leo
     

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