The Art of Giving: Would You Give Someone A Large Framed Photograph?

The Art of Giving: Would You Give Someone A Large Framed Photograph?

Tess Wilson
Oct 3, 2013

As we've discussed, all gift-giving is exquisitely risky, but a big piece of art definitely ups the ante. I am about to give a loved one a large framed photo that I think they'll love...but who knows? I just hope I'm not imposing...

When you receive a gift, there is often a certain obligation to let the giver know that you, not only appreciate, but actually use the gift. This seems to hold most true when it comes to home objects, as I often hear of people putting certain items on display when they know the giver will be coming over. The extreme situation is one in which people permanently display items they actively don't like, just in case the giver ever comes over!

This pressure can be especially strong when the gift in question is handmade, so I try to be careful when I give such gifts, making sure the gifts are, above all else, small. Most friends of mine have some sort of inspiration wall/shrine/grouping of pretty things in their homes or studios, so I always hope they won't feel any pressure to prominently display whatever I've made them. If my embroidery is clustered on a mantel with other sentimental favorites, or hung on a studio wall along with sketches and color swatches, I could not be more honored. I've also had friends present me with beautiful paintings or drawings packaged as cards, thus lowering expectations and pressures. I fully intend to get them all framed properly someday, but for now they are casually arranged around my home.

And so, contradicting both what I've always attempted to do, and the tactful example set by my friends, I am giving someone a big, framed piece. If they don't hang it, I'll certainly notice, and they probably won't be able to just prop it on the mantel with some knickknacks. I sincerely hope that these circumstances do not affect their decisions in the least, and that they only hang it up if they love it and if it fits in their home. We'll see!

Would you give someone a large work of art?

(Image: Martha and Ben's Southern Mix)

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