Sharing Art

A common problem many artists have who have been creating for a long time is what to do with the products of their labors.  We may exhibit at art shows, a gallery or in places such as restaurants, theatres, offices, etc.  For most of us this results in occasional sales while the rest of our output simply accumulates.  Eventually storage becomes a problem.

Many people simply don’t think about acquiring original art.  It may seem too expensive.  They decorate their walls with posters, reproductions and décor purchased at a local hobby store.  A question we as artists have to think about is, should original art belong only to the well-to-do or highly educated?  Some artists say yes, that giving away original art or selling it at greatly reduced prices reduces the chance for artists to make a living at what they do (which is really not a possibility for most of us.)

I don’t agree.  I would like my art to find a home with someone who appreciates it, regardless of their financial status.  I keep records and I think I have given away as much as I’ve sold.  Some have gone to charity auctions.  Many others have gone to individuals, some as appreciation, and others to recognize special occasions.  Recently two of my paintings found homes, one to a newly married couple, and the one above as a graduation and engagement present.

When I am giving to individuals, I like to let them choose.  I have numerous paintings on the walls in my basement and it is fun for me to watch them try to decide which one they will choose and why they like it, sometimes for reasons that would never occur to me, such as the high school graduate a year ago who chose a painting of a Norwegian Fjord because it reminded him of Narnia.  The one above was chosen by an aspiring filmmaker because, he said, he liked the light and shadows, which was what he tried to capture on film.

So I’ll keep on painting and giving but selling one occasionally would be nice too.

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