Creating the Illusion of Art with Magazines and Picture Frames

Illusion is the first of all pleasures.” – Oscar Wilde

This idea of recycled art came about when we realized we had picture frames but could not find photos that looked good in them. In some cases, the picture frame itself was the focal point and every photo we tried looked horrible because it took away from the picture frame.

The idea also came up because we never seem to have enough money to go buy a nice piece of art – even a print!

Recycle Frames

Click for larger view!

Then the idea came about to put something abstract into the frame that would enhance the frame itself as opposed to something that competed with it, like a photo of your friends or family!

If your friends & family get mad that you haven’t framed a photo of them yet, just say, “I’m looking for that perfect frame because you are worth it!” (This should buy you more time)

The abstract art images we found were recycled from old home decorating magazines and were usually advertisements for area rugs or tiles. They were also much cheaper!

You can do this in a couple of ways:

  1. Cut them out and place them directly into a frame
  2. Scan them on your computer & print out your own photo (great if you need it to be a different size!)

Recycled Art

Recycled Art

In this one particular picture frame there was a pre-cut mat for three 5×7 photos. We removed the mat and spray painted it copper with paint we already had in the garage from an older project.

Recycled Art

Then we chose three different images from magazines and placed them in the frame. In this case, all the images were ads for area rugs but you can recycle anything – old gift wrap, scrapbook paper and fabric all work great.


Recycle Frames

The picture frames in our examples are more monochromatic but obviously, you can use whatever suits your taste and change them often for little to no cost!

After you are finished, you will have the illusion of store bought prints on your wall, on your desk, or anywhere else you want it to be.

Recycle Frames

If you want to do bigger sizes, try framing cool wallpaper, fabric or gift wrap.

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