How to Pack Paintings For Shipping

How I pack a painting for shipping:

Click the image below for a video explanation, and/or scroll down further for a written explanation

Lets first talk about packing supplies. Ok, I admit I hoard all the things for packing that I can. Order something from Amazon and I'm more excited than a cat about the left over cardboard box! I know that some artists will raid the recycling bins of furniture stores for precious packing supplies, but I haven't needed to try that tactic quite yet. Beyond saving up any and all cardboard or packing type items that come to my house, I will admit I actually do pay for cardboard. I like to purchase large flat cardboard sheets 48x72 inches, its pricy but so worth it. They make packing an art in itself and a joy to create as I sculpt together custom sized boxes. The purchased cardboard is so much easier to use and it makes for a nicer looking package. I order my cardboard and other packing items from Uline.ca Beyond the cardboard collection I also purchase cardboard corners, thin foam to protect the artwork, stretchy plastic wrap (from Staples), and of course lots and lots of packing tape (from Canada Post or Staples).

I start with wrapping the surface of the painting in a thin sheet of foam. Then I cut two flat sheets of cardboard, one for each side of the painting. Next the cardboard corners go on and those get secured in place using the stretchy plastic wrap that also covers the sides of the artwork. That is the inner box completed (my favourite part of the box making process). Then I try to remember to attach any extras to the outside of this box, an example of extras could be a thank you note, the invoice, a biography, a complimentary art card, etc. Next step is to build the outer box. Basically I make a box top and a box bottom and tape them together (this gives me two side walls of cardboard protection). If I am packing a painting with a frame I will likely also stuff some extra padding along the sides of the box before I tape it together. Then all that is left to do is label the box with the address.

Oh and you may be wanting to know who do I use to ship my paintings? If the painting is 30x40 inches or smaller I will use Canada Post to ship. If you ship a lot, I recommend you go online and register as a small business with Canada post, they will mail you a card that gives you better shipping options. If the painting is larger and it is being shipped in BC or Alberta I like to use Ace Courier, they will even come pick up the package from my house. And finally is the painting is large and going anywhere else I like to use Loomis express, you do the whole process online and they also pick up the package from my home. (Canpar is another courier that I have been happy with as well).