Since the beginning of time, art has played an important part in human history. Art differentiates us from all other living things. From the caves of early humans to the lofts of today’s urban singles, the common element is art.Many believe that owning good art is beyond their means, so they settle for mass produced items that are nothing more than wall paper. The good news is: good art is within your reach. You just have to seek it out. You can start your art collection today!Where do you begin?The first criterion for buying art is that you love the art you buy. Sounds crazy, but many people buy art they do not like because they think it has good investment value. Unless you are a wheeler dealer who buys very expensive art, the value of your art is probably more important to those who will inherit your belongings once you have passed from this world. While you are in this world, collect art that you LOVE!I have an original pastel of a Rocky Mountain scene that I purchased from the artist 20 years ago for $80. It seemed like a lot of money at the time, but I can tell you it has given me a million dollars worth of pleasure. Every day I look at it, I am transported for the moment into that scene. It is like taking a mini-vacation. That is the return on your investment you get when you love the art you buy.
Having said all this, understand that the art you buy can increase in value. It just makes more sense to buy good art that you love. If it appreciates in value all the better.Where do you look?Almost every area has art fairs during the spring, summer and fall. Art fairs provide you with an opportunity to see a lot of great art. You also get a chance to meet the artist face to face. When I like a piece of art, I spend a good deal of time talking to the artist before I buy. Taking the time to do so gives you an insight into the creative process the artist used to create the art you buy. Long after you purchase your art you will think back to that discussion and it will make the piece of art that much more personal to you.Owning a Picasso would be great, but imagine how much more meaningful it would be if you bought it directly from Picasso and had a chance to talk to him about his creative process.Art can also be found online. You can view a lot of original art in a short period of time by visiting the websites of artists online. You can find artist websites by doing a search on Yahoo or Google. If you have a particular medium that interests you, simply do a search on “watercolor artists” or “Photographers”. This will give you a whole list of sites to visit. Take your time and look at a lot of sites. Bookmark those sites that have art that holds your interest. You can go back to these sites and decide if you want to purchase any of the art that is available.Granted, you may lose the personal nature of buying direct at an art fair, but you have the ability to find some beautiful works of art at affordable prices. Artist’s sites usually have a great deal of information about the art work, artist and their creative process. You can get to know the artist better by reading their “Artist Statement”. This will give you a great deal of insight into the artist’s mind, creative process and craft. In the long term, you may find that you do develop an ongoing connection to artists you find online. New works of art are premiered on their site as they become available.
Art is very personal. Art that touches you, may not touch me. The art you collect is a reflection on those things that are meaningful to you. Art gives us hope, it gives us pleasure. Art gives us escape from the tensions of the day, it heals us. When you collect art, you begin a personal adventure that fills your home with beauty and gives joy to your soul. You may not be able to afford a Picasso, but you certainly can afford a Thomas Dean. Start your art collection today!