Artwork that needs to be packed and shipped.

How To Ship Your Artwork

How do I ship my art?

Whether selling an art piece or shipping your favorite, unique painting to your new home address, shipping art can be a hassle. This hassle is especially true if you are shipping artwork cross-country. But it doesn't have to be. With the proper planning or opting to use professional companies that pack and ship artwork, you could take a potential headache and make it into an easily doable task. Here's how to ship art, whether you are doing it yourself or hiring someone else.

Doing It Yourself

Packing and shipping artwork yourself is perfectly valid, but you want to do your homework beforehand to avoid any mishaps. You will want to research how to ship art before you try stuffing your one-of-a-kind painting into a moving box that is too big and calling it a day.

You also have to consider multiple factors: what kind of art are you shipping? Are you just moving the art across the street or across the country? Will your art fit in your vehicle, or do you need a rental truck? After answering these questions, you will have a better idea of how long it will take, how much it should cost, and what packing materials you will need.

First, figure out how to pack and ship artwork without it getting damaged in the process. For example, to package an unframed painting, you will wrap glassine paper around the front, tape it to the back using painter's tape. Make sure you do not tape directly to the painting. Now roll the painting up to put into a shipping tube. Please do not close it until you've used something to fill the empty space, such as packing paper or peanuts. Using the packing materials prevents the painting from moving.

But if the painting is in a frame, here is a brief description on how to pack and ship your painting. You will want to use painter's tape over the edges of the frame and the glass to prevent movement as much as possible during shipment. You'd also want to protect the borders of the wall art using something like cardboard corner protectors. Then wrap it in bubble wrap and tape a layer of foam to both sides.

Now the glass won't move, shatter, or break in most circumstances, and you need a box that will fit the painting in a frame's new dimensions. You will want something tighter than a box that is far too big to prevent movement as much as possible. But if you have to use a bigger box, add bubble wrap into the box to stop the painting from being damaged. Just remember, don't lay the painting flat in the vehicle or lay it anywhere something could fall on it. You will want it standing up and secured in the vehicle. If your art can't fit in your car or truck, you will want to rent a box truck. These are available from truck rental companies such as Uhaul.

Reasons to ship it yourself:
  • Save money.
  • Personally overseeing the safety of your artwork.
  • Learn how to ship artwork.

Letting the experts do it for you.

Some companies pack and ship art for you. Try to avoid packing the artwork yourself and then letting another company ship it. You might save a little money; however, if there is damage, the shipper will blame it on you since you packed the items. There are many options and some great reasons to turn to a company instead of doing it yourself. Professionals from moving and shipping companies will have experience in how to pack and ship art correctly. To complete this task, you can hire a local moving company, a national moving franchise, or a specialist like Ship Smart. Ship Smart specializes in shipping large pieces of framed art, packing and shipping heavy sculptures, large fragile pieces, and shipping fine art. They are the best option if you have art you can't fit in your vehicle, or don't have the time to pack and ship the art yourself.  Hiring Ship Smart could free up your time when moving cross-country and have an extensive artwork collection. They are experts at crating artwork, and they insure the shipment from the pick up to the destination.

The best option for your unique situation and artwork varies. Still, you can compare pricing, how long shipping will take, and customer reviews to decide which company would be the best option.

Reasons to let the professionals ship it:
  • They have experience.
  • More convenient, no effort on your part.
  • Less likely to make a mistakes.
  • They Insure Against Damage
  • Saves you time.

Get your art where you need it to go, and in one piece!

While you may or may not have experience packing and shipping art, you do at least have a variety of options at your disposal. Think about your unique situation and budget first. Use this to determine the best option for you and make an effort to make sure your art gets where it needs to, safely. After all, that is what's most important.


Call Now to Get Started with Ship Smart
(866) 333-8018
Get Your Shipping Price 24/7!

Free Online Estimate

  • Fast and easy
  • Instant price quote
  • No obligation
Start My Estimate