Selecting art for your home/office/space can sometimes be a daunting task. It is often an accessory that is not of major priority and can be expensive to boot. However, art doesn’t always have to be expensive. In fact, there are many affordable options such as prints, lithographs and copies as well as emerging artwork from new and unknown artists that may be a fit. Whatever your budget, there is beautiful artwork waiting to be discovered! Here are 10 basic guidelines for selecting the right piece or pieces for those bare walls that are aching to be covered:
1. Assess your space. Make a mental list of all the colors and textures as well as your overall style in the space. Is your style, organic and rustic with lots of brown, lived-in leather and reclaimed wood? Or are you more of a shabby-chic kind of girl, with pink, ruffles, lace and fluff? Sleek and modern with minimalistic accessories? Or eclectic, ‘anything and everything-goes’ sensibility? This will help narrow down art choices that you are drawn to. Often times, you will find that you may be drawn to several different styles of art. Having a formula to follow, can lead you to the perfect conversation piece and will unify the room. Just be careful to steer clear of any clichéd or overly themed spaces. It will scream ‘campy’ and/or ‘cheesy’.
2. Stay true to the feel of the room. This means stay consistent with the functionality of the space as well. Don’t go too fancy with the artwork in a casual setting such as a game room. On the other hand if your kitchen has a whimsical, colorful feel with fun fixtures and a bevy of colors, then keep within that atmosphere with your selected art. Also-be practical. It’s not the best idea to hang an oil or acrylic custom piece in a bathroom. Usually prints are best in these types of rooms, which become damp after a shower/bath. The moisture will in time eat away at anything that’s not protected behind a glass in a frame.
3. Remember that when it comes to colors, you don’t always have to create a predictable matchy-matchy look. Take some cues from a color-wheel (google it) and select complementary colors. For example: If you have a fire-engine red leather sofa, you may want to include some art with a splash of green and sunny yellow to complement the red. On the other hand, incorporating tones and shades of a single color is a sophisticated take on monotony. It can add interest, especially if the artwork or fabrics in the room have lots of texture.
4. Decide on which direction you want to take your style in the space. Is the art going to dictate the mood, style and feel of the space? Are you starting out with a ‘blank canvas’ of a room? If so, then you obviously have more freedom with your choices. If however you are not in a position to replace your existing furniture and have to play with existing furniture, then why not have fun with it? Get creative. Try out a few options until the right one fits in perfectly. Flip through design/home interiors magazines to gain inspiration and make an inspiration board.
5. Measure your walls/space for art. This is key. A large wall needs either one large piece or multiple pieces. A large wall can easily swallow up your art. If you prefer to hang one consistent image however, instead of several smaller, yet different pieces, a diptyque or triptyque (paneled art) is also an option. If however you have a large enough space/wall, then you can be generous with your art size. Large pieces can look dramatic when they consume almost the entire wall.
6. Take some photos of your space/room and bring them with you on your hunt for art. It helps to have a reference to look at and you may even garner some tips from the staff.
7. Set your budget. You can find art for any budget on the internet. Look for sites that promote up-and-coming artists, such as myartspace.com or Etsy. You can even contact your local art school and find out when they hold student exhibits/shows. A trip to the flea market is always a good idea as well if you are on a tight budget.
8. Art is a personal thing. It can also be an investment. Keep searching and you’ll eventually find a piece you love.
9. LOVE and CONNECT with the piece and you may find that you will want to own it forever regardless of your changing style or budget.
10. DIY. If all else fails, or you are dissatisfied with what you find on the market, then get creative and create your own art! You might just end up surprising yourself!
Celine is a Los Angeles based artist and design enthusiast who specializes in abstract paintings. What started as a childhood joy of incorporating her love for aesthetics into her daily surroundings, has evolved into a lifelong passion for creating visceral works of art. Despite being drawn to all creative outlets, Celine ventured into the world of psychology and behavioral science, furthering into her graduate studies and earning a degree in School Psychology. It was during this chapter in her life, while working closely with children, that Celine was able to reconnect with her inner child and her childhood passions, thereby rediscovering her love for the arts and all things creative. She completed some informal art courses at The Brentwood Art Center as well as design courses at UCLA where she continues to experiment with various mediums in art. Her vision is to offer artwork and creativity that integrates classic style and modern sophistication with a dose of dramatic edge. Her background in psychology allows her to marry visual expression of art with the therapeutic qualities evoked by the various colors, and inspirations from nature. In her free time, she enjoys traveling and dabbling in photography. For more information about the artist go to celinedesigngallery.com.