How to Buy Art

I still have the first piece of original art that I bought. I was in my mid-20s and it spoiled me for anything else. From then on, I could only buy original pieces. Now every wall in my home showcases artists from all over the world, and each painting brings me great joy.

You've often heard the stereotype about buying your art to match your couch. I'm a person who  chooses a piece based on how it makes me feel. It has to 'speak' to me. Art is all about feeling. It's an expression of how the artist was feeling when they made it, and when you see art in someone's home, it also says something about how they see the world. Most of the time artists paint out of a compulsive need to create; to get their joy out. Even when the process is painful, the sense of joy, relief and accomplishment is tremendous.

How do you buy art? Is it a calculated decision based on your home decor needs, or a haphazard choice based purely on what you like?

For those who'd like some direction on choosing art, there's a great article on Curbed.

Check it out here. My tactic has always been to find emerging artists, and I've been lucky enough to find some whose work has tripled in value!

Happy buying! Us artists appreciate you.



When Artists Collaborate

I'm so inspired by other artists' visions and creations. I'm particularly in awe of artists who make work I could not even attempt without messing it up. My friend Julie of Dragonfly Woven Art is one of those artists. She's a weaver with a very unique talent. Her work is nuanced and bright at the same time, so sophisticated in design yet simple in execution. Just gorgeous.

I think I couldn't replicate her magic; she thinks she couldn't replicate mine. But, braver than me, she signed up for an abstract art class and painted a lovely piece. She didn't like it though. She said she felt it was unfinished and didn't articulate her vision. She invited me to do as I wished with it - giving me carte blanche to completely cover it if I wanted to.

I thought this was an amazing opportunity. My work is so intensely layered that you often can't even see the base layers once it is completed. So my challenge here was to let her work peek through, and showcase the elements of her painting that seemed most Julie-like and most interesting. 

The end result is one you have to see close-up to really appreciate. I used the colors she chose as the leaping-off point for my own color palette, adding the vibrancy she felt was lacking. She'd included some cute polka dots in her piece - I extrapolated dot outlines for my contribution. And she'd used copper but says she prefers gold, so I add copious amounts of that.

I have to say it was hard for me not to completely dominate the piece with my own style - and I didn't really succeed because my contribution is so overwhelmingly bold. But I think it turned out okay, and I thank Julie for trusting me with the process, and allowing me to learn along the way.

Julie got to name the piece and she says it reminds her of her parent's pad in Palm Springs. So, "Summer Vibes" it is. This one is 40 inches wide by 30 inches deep.

Scroll the gallery below to see the process from start to finish.

Collaborations are awesome!

Letting go of the ones you love

People often ask me if it's hard to say goodbye to the pieces I've painted. After all, it's an intensely creative process and when you've experienced moments of bliss and synchronicity it's like a piece of your soul attaches itself to the finished work. Despite that I find it easy to say goodbye to a painting, because it seems to take a life of its own, and is therefore now independent of me. 

However I must admit there've been some abstracts I let go of but miss to this day! Here are some of my faves.