As the recession deepened, Metro Art & Frame owner Bo Okuyan found that demand never slackened for one market of art collectors: parents. Mr. Okuyan's business savvy caught the attention of the New York Times' Michael Winerip in 2010, who noted that a steady supply of finger paintings and crafts had caused Bo to rethink his definition of art. “All kids are artists, that’s how we look at it now,” he said. Whether upgrading fridge-hung stick-figure portraits to a permanent gallery or framing a more traditionally priceless painting, Mr. Okuyan and his staff begin with a complimentary consultation, tailoring each project to fit home or office aesthetics and personal style. Metro Art & Frame's acid-free mats center photographs, oil paintings, or post-modern puddles of spilled milk in an ornate, gold-leafed frame or elegant black one. Five types of glass and two flavors of plexiglass guard sensitive paintings from light damage with UV protection, and the shop's selection of contemporary and classic prints lets patrons fill in the gaps in their home galleries.
A part of the Big Apple Art Gallery family, Bob's Frame Shop boasts a fully ensured, skilled staff that custom frames items of all dimensions right in the studio. Their services range from basic framing—which comes in a choice of 8,000 different styles—to specialty shadow boxes, which immortalize 3-D memorabilia such as a graduation cap or a treasured sports jersey belonging to the hockey-obsessed family dog. The experts outline pictures with cotton, linen, and silk mats, which are sliced with a computerized mat cutter for shapes and letters contoured to precise specifications. Delivery to the surrounding neighborhood is available, and the accommodating establishment welcomes customers seven days a week.
Between her time in the United States and in her native Brazil, Alexandra Neuber has spent 20 years behind the lens of her camera perfecting her framing and shutter-snapping skills. She remains discreet and out of the way during the many weddings, portrait sessions, and bar or bat mitzvahs she photographs, preferring to capture natural moments between kin and friends rather than dictating their every pose. Once sessions conclude, Alexandra and her clients confer to pick out favorite images, preserving the retouched pictures with prints, albums, posters, and dips into the Fountain of Youth.
Beyond its work staging traditional photo shoots and portraiture, Garden State Photo Studio's team of event photojournalists is dispatched to special occasions to tell their stories. As celebrations such as weddings, sweet sixteens, and bar mitzvahs unfold, photogs follow the belles of the ball, snapping or videotaping a chronology of candid moments with their professional-grade digital cameras and lighting equipment.
Garden State?s traveling photo booths fuel party-time fun and memory-making. After attendants set up the stationary photographer, party-goers pile in as the booth snaps pictures of the revelry. Instant images are printed onto strips and posted online so that guests can relive the memories later or ask the photo booth accusingly why it took so many pictures of Karen.
After apprenticing with master framers in Yorkshire and London, Heba Elbanna opened Tresorie, where she designs custom frames that archive cherished memories and reflect her clients' unique tastes. Drawing on nine years of French matting experience, she carefully applies transparent watercolor washes and hand-inked lines around matted works of art. This technique, which first arose in the late 18th century, was nearly quelled by the Industrial Revolution, a time of great societal change when the rise of precise machinery made hands obsolete. Fortunately, 20th-century artists revived the French matting technique, and today Heba often incorporates the classic designs into the framing of modern art pieces as well as contemporary photographs.
When she isn't painting delicate lines, Heba and her staff source frames from Larsen-Juhl and Roma Moulding, which come in styles ranging from slim and minimalistic to wide and ornate. Staffers can protect photographs and prints with simple, clear glass as well as museum quality, UV-resistant glass that reduces glare from grouchy portraits. In addition to cutting single, double, and multi-windowed mats, Heba also displays three-dimensional pieces—such as antique pipes and fans—inside specially designed frames. Customers can view Heba's handiwork on her online gallery and peruse samples of her French matting.
At Right Angle, owner Pablo Godoy and his staff of skilled artisans complete each framing project in-house at one of three locations. They use museum-quality materials such as anti-reflective glass, Bainbridge cotton, and acid-free mat-boards. Using moulding styles by Larson-Juhl, the shop provides handsome settings for everything from treasured paintings to family heirlooms such as your grandpa's favorite chair.