It felt so satisfying to sign off the last few units of my apprenticeship the other day. To be able to say that I am a Qualified Picture Framer feels both comfortable and thrilling.
I was lucky to have two very knowledgeable mentors to guide me. Erin Salguero has helped me thrive in what I do best which is to create; and has taught me to be confident in areas I had once avoided. Dylan Marshall has been a bottomless well of knowledge and I feel very lucky to have had him as my trainer. I have also had the opportunity to observe, learn, and collaborate with the Woolloongabba Art Gallery.
The Picture Framing Apprenticeship goes far beyond just assembling a frame. It has given me knowledge and skills for conserving and sustaining history. Framers have a responsibility to preserve culture and not to be waylaid by cheap unsustainable trends. We are in a society that thrives on mass production and sustainability is often compromised. Picture framing is one industry that will always rely on tradition in order for it to remain sustainable. Often we find ourselves doing things and using materials without understanding why or where it comes from. The role of the artisan is dying, and even artists are becoming a chain in mass production. Mass production relies on the product to be cost effective, easily available and perishable. Picture Framing traditions need to stay intact so that a century from now we still have an archive of our current society.
By teaching others about conservation and archival methods Dylan and Erin play a role in the preservation of history. It might sound like a glorified position, but when looking back on generation Y we will be known as the disposable generation, and we need to pass on the knowledge of how and why we do things so that in times to come our culture progresses and keeps its rich history intact.
I am confident and excited about my future as a Picture Framer and Artist. I look forward to the wonderful things I will have the opportunity to frame and the amazing people I will collaborate with.
This blog post is the first by our very own trade qualified Grace Herrmann. I just want to take this opportunity to say how proud I am of Grace and how much she has achieved since first walking through our doors. I see a bright future for Grace not only in framing but also in her arts discipline. Watch this space! (Erin)