If you prefer traditional methods, I can write up some tips one of my professors gave me. I can also link to a tutorial to create a lightbox, for better, more even lighting when photographing art. I've used very cheap means to create one when I was in a bind, once.
As for month themes, I'm right with Lieutenant as far as not limiting your options. It's typical to do "month themes," but something as simple as changing background colors and subtle accents can make a big change in how a piece of art is perceived. So you can do red/green or blue/white, and make something seem wintery, without making the entire theme scream "Omg Christmas!"