Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Photographers Feature: Print vs. Digital | Rob Garland

“I would like to start by saying that there is no better way to view a photograph than by looking at a tangible print."  Rob Garland

New in our series of local photographers commenting on why (and how) they believe we should frame our photographs.

This week: photographer Rob Garland | Rob Garland Photographers  www.robgarland.com 

"The Tree" by Rob Garland. Framed by us in Roma Moulding's dark ash Tabbacchino with a 3" glass border.

“I would like to start by saying that there is no better way to view a photograph than by looking at a tangible print. Society has become inundated by images on a screen via a computing device. Holding and viewing a print gives one an extremely refreshing experience. 
Black and white images printed in a film darkroom give me timeless photographs. My approach to digital photography is no different. The images needs to be well exposed, have a great center of interest, and speak to the viewer, no matter the medium.

Great photographs are made, not taken. We all TAKE snapshots for casual use, but when it comes to MAKING a photograph and having the image speak to you, there is no better or more tasteful way of showcasing the credibility of one’s fine art than with timeless printing and framing.
Photographing weddings for over twenty years has given me the opportunity to view many framing ideas and approaches from various artists in all fields. Many thoughts come to mind when deciding how to frame. 

When looking at many of the great interior designers, it is common to design a room around a great piece of art, or vice versa. Our company prints our fine art photographic works on archival papers. Our preference is for pieces not to fall under the category of a current trend – we want them to contain classic beauty and be desirable twenty years from now. 

To illustrate: 

One of our most recently completed works is a sixty inch panoramic photograph from my limited edition collection, printed on 100% cotton fiber paper. This allows the piece to be viewed effectively from any angle, with no glare. This one thousand year-old oak, simply titled “The Tree,” is designed to showcase the natural beauty of the world in a subtle warm-tone black and white print. 

The photograph is carefully mounted and floats between two pieces of museum glass with a hand-made Italian wood frame. There is no mat – three inches of open glass surround the print. The image floats and the distance between the print and the wall gives the piece dimension, drawing the eye and making it a focal point it any room. The custom dark ash frame becomes the perfect complement to a piece suited for longevity. “ ~ ROB GARLAND, Rob Garland Photographers.

Rob Garland is the owner of Rob Garland Photographers (www.robgarland.com), a company which specializes in wedding photojournalism and fine art printing. Rob prides himself on a classic, intuitive, heartfelt documentation with the utmost in visual integrity. He has documented many destination weddings throughout the U.S. and abroad as well as Charlottesville weddings at many of our outstanding local venues. Rob loves imagery that fails to go in and out of style and personal touches that make each wedding and event unique.

Thanks to Rob for participating in our featured articles!
See you soon!

Posted by
McIntire Plaza

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Our Small Business Story

For the annual celebration of the heart of your local business community, Small Business Saturday, I thought I'd answer some questions that I receive again and again by new and older customers alike to show you what this small business is all about.
 Thanks for making La Linea Bella ! what she is today: she'd be nothing without your projects, visions and ideas! Every day our workshop gets to tackle new creative challenges, and every day, we grow a little bit more.

Thank you!

Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Hamburg, Germany. I moved to the States when I was 19 and love it!

How did you get into framing?

I have always been interested in art. Printmaking is one of my big passions.
After I graduated from the former Corcoran Gallery and School of Art & Design, framing was a natural fit. It's a balanced combination of using your hands, design, precision, aesthetics, left and right brain activity, a love for creating beauty... and of course the side that preserves artwork for the future.
I've been framing since the early 90's and have seen the industry fluctuate over the years, first up and up, then down - and now back up, which is really exciting.
One thing remains: good framing and design will always prevail and are irreplaceable.

How was La Linea Bella ! born?

I've been fortunate to have worked for the best in the field over the years.
I managed some awesome workshops with fantastic artisans on the team.
When I eventually outgrew those workshops, I decided to set out on my own, both as a working artist and as a framer. Both sides took off right away, but the creative world of framing has kept me so busy, that I've put my own art on hold for now and will pick it up again at a later point in time.

Art by Rachel Bush and Fred Dodson in our gallery.

How did you choose your location?

McIntire Plaza has a really unique and creative energy.
(I really think they should call it McIntire Village!)
It is chock full of independent thinking local artists, businesses and craftsmen, including folks like John Rubino, John D'Earth, Jason McLeod, Fred Dodson, and many more. Many of them have been there for decades. From massage therapists to sculptors, the variety of creative occupations runs the gamut, and you can tell that the minute you set foot there.
It's as local as you can get, and I can feel the creative energy and a special sense of community growing every day.
It was a perfect fit for La Linea Bella !

What's your mission at La Linea Bella?

My mission is to take the sense of functionality out of framing a little, and to put the beauty back into it. Framing is a huge part of your aesthetics and the decor in your home. It's like furniture on your wall.It can enhance a piece of art (or a room) - and it can also kill it if done incorrectly.

Recently I have also united with a few fabulous local photographers on a mission to get your photographs off of your computer and onto your walls to integrate those special moments back into your life instead of letting them vanish.
We have wonderful materials and glass choices these days that can diminish past damage on your inherited family photographs, and that can also preserve those photos for future generations.

Click here for our first feature.

Join us this Saturday, November 29th, and on December 6th and 7th, and help us celebrate the small independent artisan businesses at McIntire Plaza. All gifts, photo frames and art will be 20% off all day on Small Biz Saturday, and we'll be open 10 - 5.

Also visit places like ReThreads Charlottesville | Carpe Donut | Jason McLeod Jewelry | CIRCA | C-Ville Coffee | Fred Dodson Woodworking | Flowers by Natalie | Sandy Motley Catering | Glorious Foods | Great Harvest Charlottesville | Pigment | La Linea Bella ! | Carpet Plus| and more!

Thanks for joining us, happy holiday season!


La Linea Bella !
Fantastic Framing & Art
1718 Allied Street, McIntire Plaza
Charlottesville, VA 22903

(434) 244-3050

Sunday, November 16, 2014

New Collaborative Project: Photography, Digital vs. Print - CAT THRASHER

I am so excited about this project!

It is so obvious how fast images zoom by us today, and alongside those images are the special moments that go along with them.

Poof, they're here, then gone, or filed away in a folder with many others, in the vast world of your computer. In the past, an old photo was 20 years old. Today, a day is already too much age for an image to be interesting.

We're at the border of still remembering going through old inherited or stashed away boxes of old photographs in our parents' attic or basement, and the speed of the newest generation that almost never bothers to print out images and may not even care about any of that "old stuff". 

I remember finding photos of distant (or past) relatives and asking: "Who is that?".
That will soon become a thing of the past unless we reconsider how we treat our photographs or images (and memories).

I invited some of my favorite C'Ville photographers to participate in a collaboration, featuring their view on digital vs. print (and consequently framing and preserving those prints (and their art), and introducing them and displaying them in your every day environment.

First up:


Cat Thrasher Photography

"In this digital age, it's unsettling how few people print and frame their photographs. 
You have to ask yourself, when you take a picture, what does it mean to you? 
Is it significant? Is it special?"

Cat Thrasher

"I would argue that anything that begins and exists in 1s and 0s, on a computer, is a copy. There is no original...there's only a first copy. So when you print and frame a photograph, you're actually creating the first one. That's it, that's the original, hanging on your wall. Until you get to that point, your photographs don't exist in real life."

"When I think about framing my black and white studio portraits, the first thing I think about is how prominent the frame will be, and what impact that will have on the image. When you look at a print, sitting on a table, you have to consider that it is naked, and framing it is like putting on its clothes. One thing I've been obsessed with lately is museum glass, because there is no glare or reflection from the ambient light around the frame, which can really distract from the photo. You get the best view of your photographs through it. I also love to play with the size of the mat, for instance: a big mat with a small photo or a large photo with a smaller mat. You really have to think about the individual image and what kind of treatment it needs. But don't think so hard that you don't do it at all. That's the point where I think some folks get hung up. Because, in the end, the best frame is the one that is hanging on the wall, with the photo in it."

You can also find
on Facebook!

 Thanks Cat!

I look forward to continuing this conversation.

I've invited several other photographers to participate in this exchange - 
check back with us for more!

Ciao, Beate

La Linea Bella ! 
Fantastic Framing & Art

copyright La Linea Bella 2014.
All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

How to Hang Art Like a Pro - Via ELLE Decor

Thanks to our friends at ELLE DECOR for this great post on how to hang Art and not lose your mind!
There are so many things to consider, I hope this gives you some inspiration to how to hang your next project with some panache and courage!

"The joy of purchasing a new piece of art can quickly turn to stress when it comes time to hang it. How high should it be mounted on the wall? How can it be arranged with other pieces to create an inspired statement? And, crucially, how can you be sure it’s safe and secure and won’t end up crashing to the floor?
To help answer these questions, we turned to David Kassel, the founder of ILevel, a New York–based professional art placement and installation service that counts Albert Hadley, Bunny Williams, and Victoria Hagan among its many clients.

Hanging Basics

First, Kassel discussed the nuts and bolts of hanging art securely. Contrary to popular belief, he says you needn’t hammer nails into studs, nor install hefty drywall anchors to support art. Here’s how he does it:
•Use picture-hanging hooks, rather than heavy nails or screws. Although they may seem dainty, they are very secure. “It’s all based on shear weight,” says Kassel. “The picture hooks go into the wall on an angle, like a cat’s claw—it’s a whole different set of physics.”

(NOTE: At LLB, we recommend asking your picture framer for the appropriate weight hook to hang your art on. Also, we believe that hanging your art on studs is more secure, and that using two hooks will keep your art straight at all times and saves the frame from any stress of the wire pulling on it.)
•Buy the right type of hook for your artwork’s weight. “There are basically three types,” says Kassel. “A one-nail picture hook holds things that are 30 pounds or lighter. A two-nail picture hook holds pieces that are about 50 pounds. A three-nail picture hook holds pieces that are about 75 to 100 pounds.
•Use two picture hooks per artwork. Not only does this provide added security but it helps art remain level over time, compared to items hung from a single point.
•When possible, install two D-rings, rather than a wire, on the backs of frames, to hang from the picture hooks. “Then it’s stationary, and not swinging on a wire,” says Kassel. “There’s no pendulum effect involved.”
(We think this is a great idea! Check out our tips on the website here.)
•Use a level and ruler to ensure that both the picture hooks and D-rings are aligned when installed.

Stylish Arrangements 

When you’re ready to hang the art, the next step is choosing where each piece should reside. Again, Kassel has a few helpful rules of thumb:
•Recruit a helper who can hold pieces against the wall before you begin hammering in the picture hooks. “Then you can take a step back to see what the space is going to look like with the piece there,” says Kassel. “You get a sense of the proportions and colors, and see it against all the other design elements.”
•When hanging a single piece on a wall, the center of the picture should be about 60 inches off the ground, which places it at eye level.

(We have found that 62" - 67" is the best height for most eye levels, depending on how tall your family is.)
•When hanging a pair of works, one above the other, treat them as one large picture (whether they’re the same or different sizes). Find the center point between them, and use the same 60-inch rule.
•For spacing between art on the same wall, “Generally, we’ll use two inches between larger pictures,” says Kassel. “If they’re all smaller family photos, we might use an inch and a half between them.” That goes for the spacing above, below, and on either side of each frame.
•When arranging multiple pieces, don’t just think in terms of a grid. “What’s really becoming popular are salon installations—a group of often disparate images or frames,” clustered together, says Kassel, who notes that such installations often stretch from wall to wall and floor to ceiling. “There’s no right or wrong way to do it,” he says. “We just start in the middle and work our way out. It’s something you feel proportionally, or you can decide based on whether Aunt Rose should be next to Uncle Jim.”
Kassel says the most important tip is to have fun when hanging art, and not to worry too much about getting things perfect. “You’re not doing anything structural to your walls, and your house isn’t going to fall down if you don’t hang the pictures right,” he says. “If you hang something up and want to move it, it’s really easy to fix the problem,” with a little spackle. In fact, Kassel suggests changing displays of art every once in a while: “I think a lot of people like moving pictures around, just like they move furniture around to freshen things up.”

La Linea Bella !
Fantastic Framing & Art
McIntire Plaza, Charlottesville  - www.lalineabella.com

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Advice on Framing - for Artists

Any artist who has been invited to display their work knows what an exciting and also nerve-wracking event this can be. 

One of the most nicely framed shows I have had the pleasure of hosting was Donna Clark's WIDE OPEN SPACES last year. Her frames were tastefully chosen and everyone who left with one of her paintings was thrilled with her frame choices. (Pictured above.)

Framing your art is part of this process, and framing many shows, here is some advice LLB has for an artist who is about to embark on such a soul-bearing journey.

ASSESS WHAT TYPE OF FRAMING YOU ARE LOOKING FOR. Frames and proper materials are expensive and are an investment, no doubt. As we see it, there are two different directions you can take, Before anything, SET A BUDGET. Once you've set your budget, your framer can help you decide how your goals and your budget can combine into one happy product.

KNOW WHAT YOUR STYLE IS. Look around and take note on what other artists are doing.
Ask what materials or mouldings they have used and do some research so that the process is not so overwhelming once you have to make the actual choice. Being emotional about one's show is natural, so this is helpful in making your final decision.

WHAT IS YOUR GOAL? Would you like to get your art on the walls in a complementary, budget friendly way, knowing that most clients will re-frame your piece to suit their environment?
In this case, your frame is a short term vehicle that presents your art in the best  or most neutral way possible while not stripping your budget. There are more inexpensive options that will do this. They will not always be as high quality as a beautifully finished wood or gilt frame, but they can do the trick just fine. 

If, on the other hand, you would like to present the client or purchaser with an option that will have LONGEVITY and will protect your art on its new path, be prepared to invest in the appropriate materials. U. V. Protective or Museum Glazing, finer mouldings and frame choices, and museum quality boards will do just this and will be worth the investment in this case.
Some artists are very particular about how they would like to see their works framed now and in the future, and in this case it is wise to be prepared to invest in this type of framing and to incorporate this expectation into your budget to ensure that your expectations are met and kept.

Another tip: sometimes adding some width to your matting (e.g. not squishing it in a frame due to budget constraints) will give your art much more presence on the wall, will separate it from its surrounding, and present it more dramatically and effectively.

Lastly, many other artists are also very savvy about framing and are a great source of help for a frame-seeking artist. In this case, you would probably be looking for a temporary, budget friendly housing for your art that can be ordered in a standard size online and then, with help of a fellow artist, installed into said frame. Artists often have a lower overhead and can better accommodate your budget with their rates. And, hopefully, they will have the know-how to frame your work to your expectations - and you might have fun participating in the process.

La Linea Bella ! Fantastic Framing & Art
McIntire Plaza, Charlottesville, VA

(434) 244-3050

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Radiant Orchid, say adieu!

While you may have great difficulty convincing Titus that his favorite bow tie in the color RADIANT ORCHID will no longer be en vogue in 2015 ("Whaat?"),  we are excited about some of the new colors that are on the horizon:

Warmer, more earthy and slightly more calming, these colors can also add 
some drama to your walls when paired with cool metallic tones and crisp whites.

Roma's GIANNI is a modern shaped metallic float frame with a waxed 
antiqued finish that combines the best of both worlds.

Black frames remain a favorite, and there are some exciting finishes and 
patterns to choose from, so they don't have to be boring or flat.

And of course white lacquers add a pop of freshness and light whenever needed
 and can really make your wall color stand out.

 And, if you are as much in love with purple as Titus and I are, you can mix with a vibrant earth tone to add some warmth and life to it.

Luckily for Titus, who is a fan of young, strong, fresh colors, 
retro 60's graphic and tribal  patterns remain popular as well.

And we do have some great mouldings to choose from when it comes to complementing
 those bright patterns:

These are Larson Juhl's eye-popping TAFFY frames.

For some more really fun and unusual mod ideas, 

Stop by for more inspiration Tuesdays - Saturdays.

We're in McIntire Plaza, near Downtown Charlottesville.

See you soon!

2014 La Linea Bella ! Fantastic Framing & Art

(434) 244-3050

Friday, September 12, 2014

Design Trend: Metallics

Metallic highlights in interior design are a great way to contrast different textures, play with hot and cold, organic and slick, light and dark, etc.

From float frames to sleek water gilded profiles, mirrored frames and distressed rusted finishes, we carry a large selection of cool and warm metallic tones to add just the accent that you are looking for.

For more inspiration and to read more about metallic trends in interior design, click here.

La Linea Bella ! Fantastic Framing & Art
McIntire Plaza, Charlottesville, VA
(434) 244-3050

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Style Advice by Titus - Framing with Black and White.

Who said that framing with black and/or white has to be bland?
 No way!

Framing with a simple black (or white) moulding makes it easy to integrate your art into your environment, 
and lets the art speak for itself.

A clean, well-hung black and white gallery can be a strong statement, and interspersed with some of your favorite mementos it can become an eye-popping experience.

Stairs especially lend themselves to hanging 
black and white family or art galleries:

Vary the size and shape of your art for more added interest:

Or keep it simple and clean:

Set off your wall color with a pop of white
and some interesting shapes:

Or use white to add some whimsy:

We have LOADS of white and black frames to choose from and are always happy to help you design a home gallery like this one we framed for a Charlottesville home a few years ago:

And last (but not least!) don't forget that you can camouflage your secret doorways with a fantastic frame:

Visit us any day on Facebook , Pinterest or at
Tuesdays - Saturdays 
in McIntire Plaza
for more inspiration!

Titus & Beate

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Fun frame fact

Did you know? Frames have been used to protect, present and preserve art for centuries.

One of the earliest frames found in history was a wooden frame attached to a Fayum mummy portrait, dating back to the second century A.D. and the Coptic Period.

These beautiful portraits were done on panels, often using encaustic (and sometimes tempera) paints,  in memory of the deceased. This early form of encaustic painting is often still beautifully luminous. 

These panels were then attached to the mummies for burial, and many have been wonderfully preserved due to the dry climate in Egypt.

Many of them are now on display for us to view, including this beautiful portrait of a young woman from the 3rd Century, which is kept at the Louvre:

For more images, go here.
For more info, go here.

La Linea Bella !
Fantastic Framing & Art
McIntire Plaza - Charlottesville, VA

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Message from Titus!

Art exposes us to a different way of thinking. 
It keeps our minds alive, surrounds us with beauty, and challenges us to think outside the box.
Frame it well to make it last and to stand out on your walls.

See you soon!

1718 Allied Street,
McIntire Plaza,
 Charlottesville, VA

(434) 244-3050

Friday, May 16, 2014

Preserving your photos - memories well kept!

This morning, I found these gorgeous honeymoon photos from 1939 floating around in my Newsfeed.

In this age of never-ending seemingly replaceable digital imagery
and a very short attention span, it's worth stepping back and taking a moment to think.

We constantly bombard ourselves (or are bombarded) with new images of our family, friends, pets, landscapes, and more.

And what then? When we're done looking at those, we move on, hungry to see more. New. More. New. More. We file them away, and then....... we forget about them. They slide into a maze of folders in our computer or on some cloud far away.

These honeymoon photos, thought to be lost for the last 75 years, were recently found by the couple's grandson, Barney Britton, while cleaning out his grandmother's attic. They were shot in color -- a novelty at the time -- using 35mm Agfacolor film.

They had been printed and preserved and are now available for their family to enjoy (and share via the internet;) The point is: they were physically printed out, and even though they were believed to have been lost for a long time, they are now here for us to view as a part of history.

So, I guess what I am saying is: preserve your memories, treat them as if they really are special moments in your life, even if you are planning on having many more: you never know when you would like to look back!

And if you'd like to frame them to preserve them. we can help you with that too. The materials we use today are all archival and UV protective, so you can safely display those images without worrying about them fading over the years. Ad faded photos can be digitally restored and refreshed. (See link at the bottom of the page.)

 A gallery of favorite moments is a great way to share something about yourself with your friends, and to make you remember why you love your family or take a journey through some great times or trips.

This is a triptych of my mother, myself and my grandmother I framed a few years ago, it hangs over my desk, and it brings back so many memories for me on a daily basis.
(And as you can see, Dachshunds run in the family.)

If you are interested in the rest of the gorgeous English honeymoon photos mentioned, click here:

Have a great day, start digging through those boxes of photos, 
& see you soon!


PS: I love C-Ville's  Stubblefield Photo Lab for my photo needs!

La Linea Bella ! via the Huff Post on May 16th, 2014