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Who or What is Frame Your Face?


About The Artist

Artist Tom Maniaci graduated from the Kansas City Art Institute in 1978 with a BFA in Design. He then spent a semester at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee studying film history and editing. During this time he was becoming a popular local artist, painting murals for local businesses and residences there in his home town. In 1980 he put away his brushes, moved to Detroit and began a career in advertising. He’s done award-winning work as an art-director and writer, and has been directing television commercials for several years now.

Since 2001, Tom’s Frame Your Face portraits can be found in The Lido Gallery in Birmingham, Michigan, The Gaslight Gallery in Petosky, Michigan and in the homes and offices of clients in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Kansas City, Philadelphia, Miami, Dallas and of course, Detroit. In 2005, Tom was one of only five local artists to be included in the Classic Rock Art Show & Sale when it made its stop in Detroit as part of a national tour. The year 2005 was also the year Frame Your Face paint-by-number canvases made their debut.

About Frame Your Face

A Frame-Your-Face portrait is more than a simple portrait. It is a glimpse into a personality. It personalizes a room in a way no other piece of art can. Hanging in your home or office, it has that “Wow-where-did-you-get-that?” quality that invites conversation. As a gift, it produces in the recipient that quick intake of breath that tells you they are stunned by the gesture, and that it is likely to be regarded as one of their most prized possessions.

In style, it is both contemporary and retro, evoking the pop sensibilities of Lichtenstein or Warhol: bold, graphic, commercial. But unlike the intentionally impersonal nature of that genre, a Frame-Your-Face portrait is the opposite: intimate, personal, special.

Although the technique used to create your portrait does incorporate computer technology, a Frame-Your-Face portrait should never be confused with one of those quickie, faux–pop portraits you see advertised everywhere. Each portrait is drawn by hand before the colors are added. Prints can range in size from 24″ x 24″ to 50″ x 50″. Paintings can be as small as 36″ x 36″, and as large as 54″ x 54″, and of course, entirely painted by hand. All portraits are signed by the artist.

About Frame Your Face Paint-By-Number

In the Fall of 2004, The Fanclub Arts Foundation – a non-profit group providing funding for arts education – was planning one of it’s annual fund-raising events, “Art•Rageous”. Since Frame Your Face artist Tom Maniaci was on the planning committee, he had agreed to donate a portrait to be done for the highest bidder as part of the events’ silent auction. But the organizers wanted something more engaging to add to the night’s activities.

At first it was thought Tom could paint “live” during the event, with the completed painting offered in the auction at the end of the evening. But as the meeting went on, another idea began to take shape: getting party-goers to help in the painting.

There was a lot of enthusiasm for this plan, but there were doubts that this “painting by committee” would produce anything that would be an attractive auction item. The solution was to have Tom turn a Frame Your Face portrait into a paint-by-number painting on a 50″ x 50″ canvas, allowing group participation but controlling the outcome. More discussion expanded the idea. The canvas would be divided into a grid, and each square would be painted by guests for a fee, thereby providing more revenue for the charity.

On January 29, 2005, attendees at Art•Rageous painted a portrait of Clint Eastwood, and Frame Your Face/Paint-By-Number was born. Since then, Frame Your Face/Paint-By-Number has been a part of over 30 charity fund-raisers, including the Anti-Defamation League, the ACLU, Executive Women International and many others.

Depending on how may squares the canvas is divided into, and how much guests pay for a square, hundreds, even thousands of dollars are raised even before the completed painting is auctioned. Completed canvases average about $1,100 in auction and have sold for as much as $4,500. To date, Frame Your Face has done over 35 events and raised over $130,000 for charity.