I love springtime.  I didn't used to, because I thought of it as the season of rain, and mud, and road construction, and seasonal allergies.  But now that I'm a little older, and the pace is a little slower, and I get to paint flowers (yay!),'s more about planting, and growing, and greenhouses, and and garden centers!  There's something very serenely therapeutic about digging in the dirt and connecting to the earth.  Then there's the anticipation of that first bloom, and capturing it at the perfect stage of opening, with the perfect morning backlighting, and the perfect water dew drops on it.  Although I have literally hundreds, maybe even thousands, of reference photos in my "to paint" file already, I just can't resist adding a few more that might inspire me later.  Then there's the trying to paint that, to save the beauty of that image you saw, although it will never really be nearly close to as good as the real thing.

I recently finished reading a book by Annie Downs titled:  Looking For Lovely, that I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend.  I also almost forgot to write to you (blog people) this month because of all of the loveliness happening in the gardens right now (mine and all of my fabulous friends that share theirs with me, thank you!)

To every thing there’s season, and a time to every purpose under heaven
— Ecclesiastes 3:1

So I hope you get to dig in the dirt a little this month, visit a garden, plant one, or paint one...and please definitely take the time to look for lovely, and soak it in.


Ok so yes, framing is kind of the end of a project, and seems this is a new site and a new blog, it might be strange to start at the end...but hey, it's just where I am today... and it's all part of the big picture anyway!

So lets talk about framing...

Framing a piece of art can add to it immensely, or detract from it significantly.  Hopefully it will finish the artwork perfectly, make it "pop", and preserve it for eternity, so it's quite a big decision.  You don't want to mess this up after all of the work that goes into your painting! There are so many options available to you, it can be a daunting task to decide on what to do, and how to go about it, not to mention the expense!

Generally I do a lot of my own matting and framing, and it might be worth it to you to own a mat cutter and a few simple hanging tools and such.  There are also many places and online sites that offer good quality ready-made frames and mats that just require you to assemble them, which can save you a lot of time, and money!  You may also need to consider the type of glass covering, backing, and weight of your piece to be sure the stability and strength is sufficient for hanging.  Finding a good local art supply shop can help with this, they can suggest what you need if you're not sure, to assemble it yourself, or they can do it for you for a slightly higher cost (watch for the 60% off framing sales!).

If you are planning on showing your work in galleries, have special commissioned pieces, or have plans to ship your work long distances, you may need to find a local framer you can trust to meet these special requirements.  This will cost you more, but that's why artwork sometimes seems so expensive, sorry.  Here's a piece I recently had done by my framer, because it's in a competition and will be traveling to gallery exhibits.  They had some great suggestions, and I think did a great job for this piece! 

Another option is to think outside the box, do something unconventional, maybe considering your plans for where you want the piece to hang and the decor of the space, and save yourself some more money!  Here's a commission piece I did for a private collection that was going to hang in a historic farmhouse.  After weighing our options, my client mentioned liking the look of old windows, and we were able to find an original removed window from the house, clean it up and use it as a frame!  It's original, repurposed, inexpensive, and awesome looking I think!

So there you have it, my two-cents about framework, I hope that was helpful.  You can always contact me through this site with any questions you might have on this or whatever artistic challenge you might be facing today.  I'll do my best to help!

All artwork and photographs exclusive copyright to the artist, Kristina Spitzner, reproduction prohibited.

Redbriar Studio

This is the place, right here, my happy place, my creative space, my little corner of the world that I try to get to as often as possible, and stay in as long as any outside conflicting forces will allow me to.  Not that all outside conflicting forces are bad mind you, in fact some are really awesome!  There are grandchildren to spoil, gardens to tend, tea parties to host, friends, farmer's markets, flea markets, French cuisine, etc., etc., and of course the husband to feed and water, and all of the other fabulous things that make life interesting and wonderful.  But still... this is the place.  Welcome to my studio!

Here I try to surround myself with beautiful flowers and plants, , inspiration, references, resources, fascinating art supplies (my weakness and addiction), and everything else that I might need for when I do get here.  Oh yes and coffee, lots of coffee, especially the girly kind with sweet cream and such...happy happy!

Now lets get to work!!!