Nicholas: Hello, and welcome to today’s Community Spotlight of Austin, Texas. Where I interview local companies that I know and trust, to introduce them to you. I’m your host, Nicholas Painter – and today we’re here with Ursula of Hang Ups! Hi Ursula.
Ursula: Hi there, good morning.
Nicholas: Hi Ursula, how did you get into the framing business?
Ursula: Very unusually. I bought myself basically a visa, by buying a picture framing store. Originally I have a Master’s in Education in Biology, but never ever anybody hired in Germany in the ’80’s. We had no teachers or we had no need for teachers. So I did retraining in computer science and business and came as a mainframe programmer on a visa to America. And well – solved Y2K problems, year 2000.
Ursula: And after Y2K was over, they laid me off. So I had to find a way to stabilize my life and stay here. Because I came here as a single mom with two sons.
Nicholas: Wow, that’s incredible.
Ursula: Nine and eleven, you have to do something. You cannot move all 18 months, back and forth to Europe and then back here. I mean now they are bilingual. But I mean, you have to stop moving every 18, 15 months.
Nicholas: Wow. Amazing. Thank you Ursula. What’s one thing everybody should know before getting something framed?
Ursula: You don’t have to know anything, you just have to think, “I like it on the wall.” And the only thought you should have – is it something you want to preserve for the next 100 years? 01:41 It is/Is this? very valuable financially, emotionally, sentimentally? Or is it just any kind of poster you think, “Oh for the next three years, I have it on the wall.” Because the different qualities of framing, the different glasses, the different preservation methods – depend on how long you want to keep it. And that defines the price or most importantly what kind of glass we choose, materials and so on. So the other option is what room you want to hang it? Is it important, is it just for a walkway? The importance in that defines how elaborate you go in the design.
Nicholas: Fantastic. What’s unique about Hang Ups!, Ursula?
Ursula: We have a little different collection than most picture framing stores. Because most frame shops work with one big supplier in the United States, and I avoid that 02:35 one of supplier. I have all the other little small companies. So you have a different collection, and I think – beside one framer, I’m the only one who goes regularly to the only trade show and gets regularly education. Visits classes, is a certified picture framer. I do not understand why other picture framers send their employees to training. But I do, so I should know what I’m doing. And if–
Ursula: If I don’t know – I have a big network all over the world of picture framers in a closed room, and we ask each other questions if there’s something I don’t know or feel insecure how to do it.
Ursula: Yeah, why are you saying, “I can do it,” if I don’t know? I mean it’s better you make it rather well and know what you’re doing, and you cannot know everything.
Nicholas: Yes, I agree. What’s your favorite framing project that you have done, Ursula?
Ursula: Oh, that’s a hard question. I can only say the biggest frame I ever did was 138 inches by 78 inches.
Ursula: Yeah that was a project. We, the door – basically to get it out of the store, was the limit. There is no real favorite. After I’ve framed a very valuable piece, I’m sometimes happy to frame a cheap poster and don’t worry about it. So it depends. I mean, from Japanese kimonos to elephant tusks, to original classic art – we have done everything.
Nicholas: Amazing. Hey Ursula, what’s your favorite book?
Ursula: Well normally I don’t read fiction. But I read rather political science books. But one fiction book that is still in my mind is from 04:28 Anne Delbay about Cameek Lidell, the lover of Oder. And it’s called, “The Kiss.” There is a movie made about that book. But unfortunately I think it’s not available anymore. Maybe now they’ll reprint it, but a few years ago I couldn’t find it again.
Nicholas: “The Kiss?”
Ursula: “The Kiss,” from Ann Delbay.
Nicholas: Ann Delbay.
Ursula: Yeah. And it’s about – like I said, the lover and muse of the sculpturer, Oder. And many of his sculptures are probably done by her, and nobody knew. Because who would have granted a woman so much skills?
Nicholas: Sounds like an incredible story.
Ursula: Yes, it was.
Nicholas: Ursula, what’s the best way for people to reach you?
Ursula: Just call. 512-263-9333. That’s the phone number I have since 18 years. And otherwise email, web page. But phone is probably the best.
Nicholas: Fantastic. What’s your email?
Ursula: It’s firstname.lastname@example.org, not .com.
Nicholas: .us. And what’s your website?
Nicholas: Thank you Ursula.
Ursula: You’re welcome.
Nicholas: Thank you. This has been another Community Spotlight, where I interview local companies that I know and trust, to introduce them to you. I’m Nicholas Painter, take care.