Portrait Care

I use high quality materials for my portraits. This means that with proper care, your portrait can last in pristine condition for hundreds of years!

The most important thing you can do to keep your drawing from harm is to have it framed properly. Charcoal and pastel are soft materials, and they need glass over them to protect the drawing from dust, friction and smudging. UV glass is a good investment, because the number one source of damage to artwork is sunlight.

When you frame your portrait, be sure the framer cuts a matboard. This allows a "breathing space" between your artwork and the glass. Paper will expand and contract slightly as the temperature and humidity change, and if the paper is directly against the glass this friction may cause some loss of pigment. The matboard should be acid free, archival quality so that acids from the board don't migrate to the drawing. The backing board should preferably also be acid free.

Avoid hanging your portrait in direct sunlight, or in a location where temperature or humidity are subject to rapid shifts (eg, over a radiator).

If you are not going to frame your portrait immediately, avoid handling it as much as possible. Do not unroll and roll it repeatedly. Keep it in the tube it was sent in until it is framed, to prevent damage.

Before the portrait is shipped I spray it with a fixative to prevent smudging, adequate to roll the portrait. It does not need any more spray. Excessive spraying will cause the colors to be darkened and dulled.