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ArtSavesLives
05-17-2007, 03:47 PM
I was wondering what is the conventional wisdom about how to ship pastels. Often when you enter shows they require plexiglass on larger pieces, and we all know the challenges in framing unfixed pastels under plexi!

So . . . how do you frame for shipping?

fiatlux
05-18-2007, 10:41 AM
I would suggest looking at this website:
http://www.airfloatsys.com/

This company only deals with ways to ship art. They have a "strong box" in many sizes which is supposted to safely encase your art work and something called glass skin which is a low tack adhesive pastic that you can put over the glass of a framed-in-glass pastel. It is easily removed and leaves no residue, can be used on museum glass. If your glass should shatter, it will adhere to the glass skin and theoretically not damage your artwork. It is easily removed at the destination. The Pastel Society of America has endorsed the system.

Richard

ArtSavesLives
05-18-2007, 08:49 PM
Richard, thanks for the vote of confidence for AirFloat . . . I almost own stock in them already! I use AirFloat to ship to shows mostly. I have my own packing system for sold works to be shipped that doesn't require the recipient ship back an empty box!

However, it is the flaking of unfixed pastel (or charcoal for that matter) that I was wondering about. . . how others deal with dust on the glass, or how to prevent it! My most recent piece arrived intact. . . but I used fixative because I just couldn't seem to get it framed without it! It was a black and white piece, on which I used both charcoal and the value scale of grays in pastels . . . and it HAD to be under plexi. . . .but the fixative took the brightness of my lightest lights. . . .

Anyone have great ideas on how to ship your pastels without losing the pigments to jarring and bouncing off?

Donna A
05-19-2007, 12:21 AM
However, it is the flaking of unfixed pastel (or charcoal for that matter) that I was wondering about. . . how others deal with dust on the glass, or how to prevent it! My most recent piece arrived intact. . . but I used fixative because I just couldn't seem to get it framed without it!

Anyone have great ideas on how to ship your pastels without losing the pigments to jarring and bouncing off?


Hi! I was fortunate to attend a program presented by Ross Merrill, Head Curator of the National Gallery, Washington DC, at the 1999 IAPS Convention. He went into some comsiderable detail about in-depth tests they conducted on behalf of protecting and preserving pastel paintings. The exhaustive tests were fascinating to hear about. Boy did he convince me! Here is a link to notes on his comments as well as notes and illustrations on how to spray fixative without darkening a painting! Really!
http://www.aldridgestudios.com/610-Fixative.html

I've shipped pastel paintings with soooooo many layers of pastel from coast to coast across the USA, to Canada, Europe and Australia and often back again---and absolutely never ever a problem with pastel dust, even when when framing with plexi.

Below is a link to the Writings page on my web site and includes Studio Tips for Pastel Painters as well as other 'bits' such as Tips for Using Values.
http://www.aldridgestudios.com/610-Writings.html

I ordered AirFloat boxes wayyy back when---and they turned out to be a disappointment for me and I sent them all back and thankfully discovered the Pro-Pak boxes. The AFs were not very thick, so my 1.5" deep frames (not all that deep) had to be compressed sooo tightly in the hard foam that it was offering very little 'buffering' from impacts plus, with the attached, fold-over lid, definately did not give me the option of barely cramming more than one painting in, let along several. With juried shows in particular, I've usually needed to ship 2, 3 or 4 paintings, so the Pro-Pak with separate lid easly let me accomdate up to 4 pieces. http://www.propakinc.com/

Someday, I'm going to have to scan in the Nov/Dec 2001 Pastel Journal article on shipping pastels and more and turn it into pdf files that I can upload. In it, there are 6 photos of my packing process with the Pro-Pak boxes. There is a lot of other great info about framing, etc. If you can find an old version of that issue in the meantime....

I use the white convelouted foam (softer and more absorbant and forgiving for pastel paintings!!!) rather than the harder gray foam. I've made side bumpers as well as fixed plus full-sheet pads from the foam. I really take great comfort in the added protection this packing combination provides. I bought the white convelouted foam in the form of mattress padding at bed/bath shops. Nice big pieces I could cut to the sizes I needed. (As with the sent-back AirFloats) I ordered 5 of the Pro-Pak boxes (which the company kindly cut down 4" on one side so that they would become the exact proportion of the majority of works I ship, providing the approx. 3" of padding on each side that I prefer. Very best wishes! Donna ;-}