Yeah, yeah, I know, selling a painting that fast is not normally an issue. I'm sure we artists all wish it were a daily problem. :)
But, once in a while it happens.
I recently had a deer painting sell the very day after I finished it and posted it for sale. Normally I put my paintings in a 7 day auction so they have a whole week to dry before being shipped to their new owners. But in this case I had put a buy-out price and it sold right away. I didn't want the buyer to have to wait a week for it to dry before I shipped it. Otherwise, there's not a whole lot of advantage to using the buy-out, is there? So, I had to think of a way to ship it before it was completely dry.
The painting was mostly dry to the touch the next day but still a bit tacky. Certainly not dry enough to tolerate packaging material pressing up against it. I decided to solve the problem by making a little box that would grip it by the edges and keep the face of it from touching anything. So here's what I came up with.
First, start with a piece of cardboard a little less than twice the size of the painting. Notch out triangular wedges so the points meet the corner of the paintings, as shown in yellow below.
See below how I can tilt the box and the painting will not fall out because the wedge-shaped sides hold it in place.
Next you want to make a little lid for it, something stiff, so that the packaging material will not touch the face of the painting. Here I just added another piece of cardboard, a little bigger than the box opening, to cover the top. Tape it securely on all four sides.
Finally, remember this protective box is not your actual shipping box.It's just to keep the packing material off the painting. Next you need to place the little box in your bigger shipping box and be sure to add packing material like air bags or packing peanuts around it. You want at least in inch on all sides for small painting like this one. For a larger painting you'll want at least 2 inches on each side.