Friday, February 14, 2014

Freedom to Choose: Your Reason to Plan Ahead for Art

Art rendering composite - Business spaces proposal
You like art and you are in the middle of an interior design project right now, but you are sitting on the fence about whether to use art and, if you choose to use art, you are wondering what to get and how much art to use.

Ok. Those are understandable questions. Those responses are pretty common.

Let's explore why that might be and put those concerns to rest right now!

If you follow my blog at all, you know that I constantly promote the idea that art is at its best when it is telling something about you. There are several good reasons to buy art, but ... in my opinion ... the best one is that it is a vehicle to tell your story.

I can help walk you through these issues.

Here's some common ones:

* "I don't know much about art": 
While art is subjective, you instinctively have a range of art that appeals to you. Maybe you don't know why you like the style, but 

there is something there. Go with your instincts. Are you drawn to figurative work/portraits? Do you like impressionist work like you see with a scene by Monet? Do you like abstract work that isn't representing an object but is a splash of colors? There are compelling psychological reasons why this is so. Your designer can make recommendations for styles of art that compliment the spaces you are completing.

What you need to know for sure is this: Just like your furniture and flooring, your art choices say something about you. Embrace that fact. Enjoy it. Own it. Literally! Own it!
Spacing Test 1

* "What will visitors think?":
You aren't alone in this decision. Rely on the input of your designer. That will help you take confidence in the work as it relates to the space and—more importantly—helps you tell the story behind it. Your artwork is your opinion, your expression. Your visitors will appreciate the thought that went into your decisions for ALL of your interior component choices.

* "Does it work in the space?":
There is an interesting trend I have noticed in current design trends where smaller pieces are the thing. Small pieces in a smaller space does enlarge the appearance of the space, if that is the goal. But you would be surprised by the use of large-sized pieces that fill the wall spaces on large walls as you find with vaulted room heights, along smaller hallways and places you may not expect. There are simple ways to help with that decision. If the work is a commission and you want an artist to create a piece for you, a great way to help in this process is to have the rendering of what the work can look like and composite it on computer so you can see the piece in the environment. Try different sizes in the rendering process. You'll see! It's a terrific way to tackle the issue. In fact, you can do this with any piece of art, as long as you ensure you are viewing it as close to actual scale as you possibly can. 
Spacing Test 2

* "Does it fit in our budget":
The short answer is this: It ALWAYS does!
Because artwork is not a couch.
Artwork is not crown moulding.
If you have to weigh your decision between buying the next tier couch or get that perfect piece of art, I want to suggest that you're approaching the issue from the wrong angle.

If you are working with a designer, you are making many decisions with his or her guidance. Those details should be fun, compelling, and interesting. This process is about choices, and people typically appreciate having choices. 

While you go through the process, I suggest you leave a place in your mind that you are going to leave room in your efforts and in your budget to place art in your spaces. If you think about art as part of the process, you will understand that art is not an afterthought. Art is the piece in the process that completes your spaces.

Reserve money for this! 

Spacing Test 3
Don't make the mistake of stretching your budget so far beyond reason on everything you have just built out that you can't finish the space properly. In my opinion, (and I am not the only one), a cheap painting in a cheap frame set in a highly-appointed room is like the supermodel 

"You need to match excellence with excellence ..."

who has everything working, and then when he or she smiles ... they are missing a tooth! It's jolting. It's wrong. You need to match excellence with excellence!

You know you are going to create a beautiful space and you are going to spend time there. Sometimes, you will spend the majority of your home time in that space. Are you going to look around constantly in your day and be proud that you made the right choices in every aspect of the design? Or when you look around, from the floor to the ceiling, does your eye get drawn to the artwork and you sit there and critique at how much you really don't care for it. You may not know why, but it isn't satisfying, and it ruins the effect that the room is trying to create.
Final Choice - Sizing and art composition

Don't be that lady. 
Don't be that guy.

To summarize:
* Plan for art upfront
* Get ideas and suggestions from your designer
* Take note of styles that you already like

* Get quality art 
* Make sure it says something about you

If you do this, you will be surprised at how often you will be prompted to relate your story to others.

Most importantly, if you do this, you will be happier, healthier, and better-looking.


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