Author Archives: Russell Collins

About Russell Collins

An aspiring artist who came late to the art of painting and now I am hooked. Father of Freya 10 and Morgan 8. Freya tells me that the man with the curly hair on the DVD is still a lot better than me at painting, but I am getting better. Morgan just goes and plays with his Lego,

Paint and Sip Picture Frames

Proposal To Provide You With Low Cost Paint and Sip Picture Frames.

Updated 16/06/2023


Image of Pole Core Frame1. Introduction.
2. What I Can Provide You With?
3. Pricing.
4. Fixing Canvas, Boards and Paper To The Frame.
5. Selling To Your Artists.
6. My Canvases and Boards Supplier.
7. What I Would Need From You.

Russell Collins.
+44 (0)7976 912550

1. Introduction.

This is the full proposal that you can also download as a .PDF File Paint and Sip Frame Proposal 23-06-16

I think I can help you make more profit for little effort on your part by providing you with high quality, but low cost picture frames, made to your required size, that you can offer to your artists. As well as running Paint and Sip and Bob Ross (I’m a certified instructor) events in and around Milton Keynes, I also own a professional frame making system. This means that I can probably sell picture frames to you for a quarter to a third of the price you would have to pay a high street framer. I can do this because I have the equipment that is under-utilised, I do it from my shed at home and I also have a very flexible day job so would not be relying on the framing for a living. 

It’s generally accepted that one of the best ways to make more profit is to sell new products to existing customers, especially products that enhance your existing product or service. Offering to sell picture frames to your customers should add value to your events, help you be more profitable and if I have got it right almost risk-free.

Image of Morso GuillotineA couple of years before Covid I bought the framing equipment from a couple who ran their own framing business and were retiring. What I bought was a vicious looking Morso guillotine to cut moulding properly, an underpinner to fix moulding together, lots of other associated bits, and about 6 miles of moulding – the strips that are cut, and fixed together to make what we call a picture frame. A lot of the moulding was no use to me because of its style or size, but a fair amount Image of Cassesse CS79was good and I made frames that I sold in my sessions. I think I sold frames to between 20% – 25% of my customers in my evening events and to about 80% of my Bob Ross painting day customers. The best sellers were the plain black or white frames and close behind them were plain wood ones. The few coloured frames I made, that went with the colours of the artwork, sold well.

2. What I Can Provide You With?

At the basic level I would provide simple but attractive Black or White picture frames made from the Polcore Basics range, which is a form of extruded polystyrene and it would bought from Mainline Mouldings. It would be cut on a Morso guillotine, the corners would be glued and double under-pinned.

Lahrsun-Juhl call their product Artcore, but I don’t think it is as good a quality, and it has a smaller range of designs.

Image of Polecore POL2110 Moulding to make picture framesPolecore is a hard wearing material, cheaper alternative to wood. Initially I would be providing just a black or white simple profile frame made to the size of your canvases or canvas boards (if you use them). By just having a standard profile moulding and 2 colours I can order materials in bulk to get the cheapest prices.

I am looking at 30mm wide x 21mm deep with a rebate of 13mm from the bottom in both Black and White with a brushed finish, a plain matt finish would require a different profile. A wood frame would have a similar cross section. See the images to the right. The Mainline Mouldings reference for the White product is POL 1072 and the Black product is POL 2110.Image of Polecore POL1072 Moulding to make picture frames.

3. Pricing

I believe that if I can buy Polecore moulding by the box (121.80 Metres) then I can make 20cm x 30cm (A4) frames for £6.75, 30cm x 40cm (A3) frames for £9.15, 40cm x 50cm frames for £11.74 and 40cm x 60cm frames for £13.04. As a rough guide for packing and delivery; 30 of the 40cm x 50cm frames sent to Edinburgh (I needed to pick somewhere far from me) would cost about £32.00, and this cost is sized based not weight based. I could ameliorate this by adding a free frame or two depending on quantity bought.  I can make any size of frame. There is no minimum order which means that you could initially just buy 3 or 4 as a trial, which will be bought by your customers.

Regarding payment terms, I would initially be asking for full payment with order.

I would hope after a while that I could go to 50% with order on the 1st invoice, and 2nd invoice for the remaining 50% + delivery and packaging with 15 days to pay on the 2nd invoice.

The plain unfinished wood picture frames, as mentioned above would cost about 30% more if the demand was such that I could buy moulding quantities in boxes.

The moulding would be cut to an accurate size, the corners would be glued and double (maybe triple) under pinned, unlike some shop bought low priced frames that are single underpinned

If you want picture frames in a corporate colour for yourself or an events customer, and/or a different profile, then I can look into providing those as well. I would need to quote you a price and minimum number of picture frames though as I would need to get a minimum amount of moulding in. I can get small lengths of moulding in, but the smaller the amount of material I buy in, then the higher the unit costs.

When I buy moulding strips, I can buy as a Length (2.9m), a Pack (58m), or a Box (121.8m). The price per Length when bought in Box quantities is about 75% of the price of a single Length bought as a single Length.

4. Fixing Canvases, Boards And Paper To The Frame.

Regarding fixing the canvas to the frame and the frame to the wall then there are a few options. I want to keep the time of making the frames, and thus the cost to a minimum though.

The cheapest way to attach the canvas to the frame by gluing it, just in the corners, with a glue gun, I have tested this and it works. This method could make it a little difficult to remove a canvas from a frame, but a sharp knife should do it providing it isn’t glued too heavily.

Image of Frame Spring-ClipThe other way is by using spring clips – see picture.

The end with the hole is screwed to the frame, the canvas is placed in the frame and the spring clip swung over to hold it in position, the clip can be tightened by tightening the screw. This method makes the canvas easy to replace.

There would be an extra charge for spring clips and the spring clips and screws would be supplied in sets of 2, in a plastic bag, per frame. I would not attach the spring clips as this would make the frames deeper for the purposes of shipping, and I want to avoid the possibility of damage due to the spring clip rubbing against the finished frames.

Regarding canvas boards, a glue gun glue would work, or I would fire bendable metal clips into the inside edges of the frame for a small fee.

Regarding the fixing of paper (watercolours maybe), then I can cut the frames so that people could use the insides of a very low priced Ikea (or similar) bought box frame to mount a paper based artwork.

I wouldn’t supply wall hanging items as the frames could be attached to a wall by removable adhesive fixings such as the 3M Command strips.

5. Selling To Your Artists.

A number of points were raised concerning sales, when I rang the owners of other organisations to see what they thought of the idea – I will cover those here.

Some said that their artists have never asked for frames. My answer to that is that the artists were not offered them because you didn’t have them, a customer cannot make a decision about buying a product that they don’t know is available. If they know a product is available then that they can evaluate it and make a decision. If you made it clear that they were available then that will help you sell them.

Some mentioned concerns about the extra bulk and weight they would have to carry. I don’t think that you need to take the same number of frames to an event that you have artists. I would suggest that no more than 30% of your artists would buy a frame, so take enough frames to cover those 30%. Put some canvases into the frames rather than have a separate box for canvases, and frames – this adds about 4mm to the depth of a canvas.

You need to say that frames are available, and show them off. Showing the frames could be a problem for some people due to the small size of a room. You could temporarily attach them to a wall with removable 3M Command strips, or some sort of sticky dot. There could be somewhere where you could hang a frame – maybe a wall fixing.

You could put your reference artwork into a frame so that it can be seen clearly. You could also have a couple of your previous event art works displayed in a frame, maybe with the part of the painting “spilling over” onto the frame.

I would suggest that you buy 2 or 3 frames of white and black from me that you could show to, and sell to, your artists. In my opinion, you will sell them, the worst case is that it might take a few weeks to sell them, but you will sell them. On the other hand they might be snapped up in the first event that you show them, with some of you repeat customers wanting to buy a few so that all the art they have painted with you can be framed in the same way.

It really is a suck it and see job, and with my plan being that there is no minimum order and the cost of a frame remains the same regardless of how few frames you buy, delivery costs though will vary. Overall though, the risk to you is minimal.

6. Some Canvases And Boards Supplier.

As with everything else, you get what you pay for, and in my phone discussions it appears people use canvases from a wide range of suppliers. A common supplier being “The Works”. I have never liked The Works, the canvas always seems to soak up the paint before you can spread it, and the manufacturing quality seems quite low with canvases twisted, and distorted with the diagonals being of different length.

I used to use canvases from a company called DIYDistribution, or from their associated company Quantum Art. They do numerous sizes as either a Student grade canvas or a Professional grade canvas, and can make special sizes for you. The canvases are well made and well finished and I used to use the Student canvases for my paint nights. I have now switched to the canvases supplied by the Flying Tiger Company for my paint nights, but I still use the Professional grade of canvas for my Bob Ross painting days. If you are interested in knowing more about their canvases then please call Daniel on 07399 298320 and mention my name. They have been very good suppliers to me and I would be grateful if you told him that I passed on his phone number to you. They also supply some pretty good canvas covered boards.

I now buy my paint night canvases from the Flying Tiger Company who make canvases in a number of sizes up to 40cm x 50cm if bought over the internet, they do bigger sizes in the shops. I switched to Flying Tiger because the canvases are a bit cheaper, not quite as good a finish as Quantum Art Student canvases, but still good. Furthermore there is a Flying Tiger shop in Milton Keynes and I could just go in and pick them up, thus saving on delivery costs of about £30.00 an event for me.

7. What I Would Need From You.

If you are interested in buying some picture frames, then I would need to do some preparatory work. Frame making is a precision process. If the frame is too large, the canvas will have gaps around it, or even fall out of the frame. If too small you will have to trim the inside of the frame to get the canvas in.

You would need you to send me 3 or 4 of your canvases so that I can measure them to see how well they are made and how regular they are with their dimensions, especially the diagonals. I can send them back to you at my cost, or maybe buy them off you.

I would measure the canvases – the sides and the diagonals. With a reasonably made canvas I would add 3mm to the length dimensions and width dimensions and use the longest of each of the dimensions as my cut length, and the canvass would fit perfectly in the frames. I might have to add a little more to the cut length if the diagonals are skewed. Skewed diagonals could mean a frame that is a bit on the large side. This means that daylight might be seen between part of the edge of the canvas and part of the lip of the frame. If this occurs then I find that Costa or McDonalds wooden stirring strips makes good packing, but it does mean though that the frames should fit all of your canvases.

By sending me the canvases for measuring, mistakes in measuring for the picture frames become my problem.

I would love to hear your thoughts and have your question on this proposal. You can email me at or call me on +44 (0)7976 912550 if you want. If you want to see what I am doing regarding my Paint Nights then please Click Paint Night Party.


Ovenclean Blog – The Day Job

Image of Ovenclean LogoThis blog post will deal with my work as an Ovenclean Franchisee. Many customers have asked me for advice and information on various issues regarding their ovens. So, rather than fill your in-box with long mailing list type emails, I will link my emailings to this blog page. Please read on.

In the same way that you should carry out regular checks on your car to ensure that the tyres are correctly pumped up and have sufficient tread etc., you should also check the state of your oven once in a while. Here is how you can check the efficiency of your oven door seal. If you have a problem with your oven then you should email me: Russell Collins   or call me on 07460 238877

Oven Efficiency – The Doors

When I turn up in my Ovenclean T-shirt to clean an oven, one of the things I check is the quality of the door closing mechanism. The oven door needs to close firmly and remain closed so that the door is completely shut. If the door is not completely shut then hot gas will escape from the door to damage the outside of the oven, reduce the efficiency of the oven and possibly also cause you heat injuries from hot air (in excess of 180 degrees) escaping from around the door. It is easy to check the door efficency.

Oven Door Ring

Image of Rubber Door SealAll oven doors should have either a rubber, or steel mesh based door ring around the oven cavity. This allows a gas tight seal to be formed between the oven door and the oven body when the door is shut. Door Rings have a very long life span stretching to years, but they will deteriorate over time. Rubber door rings get hard, split, sag and break, metal door Rings compress and fray. This can allow the release of hot gases that reduces oven efficiency and possibly cause personal injury.

Oven Door Hinges

Image of Oven Door HingeOven door hinges have powerful springs in them that force the door against the rubber seal to form an airtight connection so that hot gases cannot excape from the oven. If the springs have stretched over time (years) then the door does not close properly. This can allow the release of hot gases that reduces oven efficiency and possibly cause personal injury.



Checking the Oven Door Seal.

Checking the seal of the oven door is easy. Simply switch on the oven (assuming a fan oven) and with the door closed, simply listen to the noise of the fan. Give the door handle a gentle push and there should be no change in the oven noise. If there is a change in noise then you have a faulty door seal and remedial work is required.

Check the oven door ring and see if it is hard, cracked or broken. If it is then it needs replacing.

Check the door hinges by opening the oven door about 5 cms and letting go. It should shut with a bang. If it doesn’t then the hinges probably need replacing.

Any concerns either email me Russell Collins or call me on 07460 238877



Bob Ross Painting Northern Lights

Bob Ross Painting Northern Lights

Picture of the Bob Ross Painting Northern Lights

The Bob Ross Painting Northern Lights

One of the most popular paintings taught, is the Bob Ross painting Northern lights. Northern Lights uses a black canvas, and 8 colours to produce a monochrome Arctic night scene. Add in the Northern Lights, and you have a painting that you will be proud to hang on your wall, see the video below to see how it is done, Contact me, Russell Collins if you would like me to take you on a journey from a black canvas to your own masterpiece. I am preparing my painting classes for 2018 and Northern Lights will be one of the first paintings.


Pet and Person Portraits

Pet and Person Portraits by Russell Collins

Pet and Person Portraits

The Happy Wanderer.

Pet and Person portraits in the Impressionist figurative style of Robert Hagan, by Russell Collins

Commissioning pet and person portraits can be a very daunting experience for some people and a lot depends on what it is for. It could be for yourself, it could be a gift or it could be some form of memorial to a pet or person no longer here. It could even be a memory of a special occasion such as a wedding. Despite advances in photography and digital manipulation, there is nothing to beat an original piece of art. For further information on our art visit our shop


Pop Up Art Gallery

Pop-Up Art Gallery

Art Gallery Sign

Art Gallery

One a Wednesday evening, a voice in my head told me to set up my own art gallery in my front garden and sell some paintings. By the end of the following weekend, I realised that the voices are sometimes right, I sold 6 and got 2 commissions. This blog post deals with my experiences regarding setting up a pop-up art gallery at 2 day’s notice. 

I think the whole concept is a good one, and the implementation of the idea went quite well. I made sales and got commissions, and will do it again soon. Read on to find out more about what I did, and what I will do next time to make it more successful. I hope that you, dear reader will learn from my experience and that it will make your art more profitable.

I have started a Facebook Group called Pop-Up Art Galleries. Join it for help and advice on setting up your own pop-up art gallery and shop.


Howe Park Wood – Painting Day

Howe Park Wood – Fantasy Forest

Join us on Sunday 30th April to paint this stunning landscape woodland scene that is inspired by Howe Park Wood. At the end of the day you will take home this Bob Ross style masterpiece to hang on your wall. This is a fantastic painting for any standard of painter from the “never painted before”, to the experienced. Although this is a relatively biggie at 100cm x 40cm, you can do a smaller canvas if you wish.

Howe Park Wood Fantasy Forest

Howe Park Wood – Fantasy Forest Painting Day

We will provide all materials including the canvas, paints and brushes, and other materials. but bring your own painting clothes. The price includes tea, coffee and biscuits, as well as a Subway lunch.

A Painting of hoew Park Wood As The Sun Goes Down

Howe Park Wood at sunset, with a small stream running through the trees.

You should be able to add your own colours in this workshop (within reason) and you can see alternatives below. You can paint it in a range of spring, summer, or autumnal colours as shown below. Bring the children and let them do their own on a smaller canvas for half price. If you are under 18 then your cost will be £40.00.


Small Business SEO Services In Milton Keynes

Small Business SEO Services In Milton Keynes

SEO Services in Milton Keynes Copywriting Training CertificateSite Structre Training CertificateRussell Collins successfully completed the Yoast SEO for WP training course!

Search Engine Optimisation

We provide SEO services in Milton Keynes to small businesses. Many small businesses don’t have the time or knowledge to optimise and update their web site regularly. This means that their web site is not an effective sales tool for them. Having a web site that has good search engine optimisation means that you could rank more highly in the search rankings. This higher ranking means that you should get more visitors to your site who want your services. More customers will make you more profitable, especially if it brings you more high value business. We can help you with this so read on. Although I am can provide SEO services in Milton Keynes, I can provide them to clients anywhere.


Oil Paint Mediums

Introduction to Oil Paint Mediums

Bottle of Oil Paint Mediums

Winsor and Newton Oil Paint Mediums

The oil paint mediums are vegetable oils that are used in oil painting to hold paint pigment together. They can also be used to thin the paint and act as a clear first layer when painting wet-on-wet. This will allow the first paint layer to spread easily.

What other uses do the different oil paint mediums have in the oil painting process? I want to cover the 4 main mediums in this post, and the way they affect the oil painting process. Oil paint mediums also act as drying agents that can change the drying rate of  paint on the canvas. The different oils can also have a different effect on different coloured paints.

Only use artist’s oil paint mediums bought from art stores as your painting medium.


Making More Money From Art-6 – Workshop Strategy

Making More Money From Art-6 – Workshop Strategy

Workshop strategy

A Workshop strategy outline

What is the purpose of a workshop strategy? First of all it should contribute to the overall goal of helping you make more money from your art. Secondly, a workshop strategy should help you focus your mind on the art that you paint. It can also help you focus on getting you new customers, and more customers coming back for additional workshops.