BALANCE + UNITY + IMPACT = ARTFUL GROUPING
1. Balance large with small, grouping small frames together to offset the heaviness of a single large piece.
2. The spacing between objects creates rhythm and affects the way each item relates to the next. For an airier effect that lets each piece be appreciated on its own, leave more space between frames; for a dramatic look that highlights the relationship between each piece, leave less. But whichever approach you choose, leave equal spacing between each piece for an overall harmonious look.
3. Experiment with symmetry and repetition, playing with different combinations of both until you find the combination most pleasing to your eye. For example, line up three same-size frames side by side, or place two smaller frames on either side of a large one.
4. Choose a theme, such as nature or travel, to link each piece to the others. Or, group the artwork by color. An eclectic series of photos in multiple sizes, for example, can still look unified if they’re all in black and white.
5. Grouping artwork by era or style is another way to connect the items in a display.
6. When mixing old and new, use matching frames in one or two neutral colors. This helps link the different pieces together in a smooth, cohesive way.
7. Odd numbers of frames (3,5,7) create the most pleasing effect in a display. Place central pieces at eye level or slightly above on the wall, then expand your display outward from there.
8. To add interest and character to a collection of similar art pieces, use frames in a variety of colors, textures and shapes. Interspersing the display with mirrors helps break up repetition, and creates the illusion of amplified natural light.
9. Hang several shelves to create a gallery of artwork and objects. Place framed or un-framed artwork on the shelves to lean against the wall, and then add eye-pleasing items (found river rocks, sculptural vases, or vintage children’s toys, for example) that play off the shapes, colors and textures of the artwork.
10. Use wall ledges as a framework for an ever-evolving mix framed artwork. Aside from protecting your walls from misplaced holes, ledges also provide the freedom to layer artwork so that one frame slightly overlaps the other. This technique puts the focus on the display as a whole, rather than on any individual piece.