Adding artistic touches to your walls is one of the easiest ways to rejuvenate your space. The ‘hunt’ for pieces is also a really fun thing to do (and a great hobby of mine!)
It is possible to spend a small (or, for that matter a very large) fortune on art, and this is what puts most people off. However if you’re not shopping with value appreciation in mind, and really just want to add beautiful and inspiring life to your walls, it can be done very economically.
Buying prints and reproductions is the cheapest way to get your fix. As a rule of thumb, the more unique and limited edition something is, obviously the more expensive it becomes. Then multiply that by how well-known the artist is, and you come out with a price.
If you’re prepared to do some scrolling, magical finds can be picked up through etsy and there are millions of artists selling through their own websites, it’s all a matter of searching. Personally I steer clear of mega sites such as art.com – yes, you’ll get that Monet for the spare room you’ve always wanted BUT….
I’ve summarised my favourite treasure troves to buy affordable art as follows:
1. Surface View (Above) Based in the UK, this company brings together a wide-ranging collection of imagery that spans everything from iconic photos, orientals, and vintage comics, through to 19th century botanicals, getty classics and abstracts. Surface View carry hundreds of ready-made artworks but the best part of buying from here is the ability to individualise your artwork through fantastic customisation. In addition to basic tweaks such as size and frame, you are can have your chosen artwork translated onto tiles, murals, curtains, window films and more.
2. Saatchi Art (Above) Saatchi Art offers a HUGE selection of paintings, drawings, sculpture and photography (both original and editions) across a range of prices. Based in Los Angeles, the company eliminates the snob factor from the art purchase process. Fantastic search tools and filters make it easy to drill down on suitable pieces based on colour, subject, medium, and price.
3. Birdy and Me (Above) Illustrator Kelly Smith (the talent behind ‘Birdy and Me’) is an Australian fashion and beauty illustrator. Her too-pretty ‘fairytale’ pieces are masterful works in pencil and ink. She has worked with a number of luxury brands and high profile clients including: Valentino, Armani, VOGUE, NET-A-PORTER and more. Her online store carries a small selection of original illustrations, prints, posters and cards at very affordable prices.
4. Conde Nast Store (Above) If you love iconic fashion imagery, this is for you. Featuring thousands of photographic prints and posters from the publisher’s leading publications such as VOGUE, you’ll find countless glamourous and vintage works to buy. Reproductions from leading vintage photographers such as Horst, Cecil Beaton and Bert Stern are available in spades. Priced from a tiny $19.95 before shipping, this is definitely worth bookmarking.
5. Everything Begins (Above) This is a wonderfully well-curated online art gallery, featuring affordable pieces that are usually signed and numbered by the artist. Many modern styles are represented including graphic art prints, illustration, typographic prints, letterpress prints, typographic map art prints, geometric art and more. The founders scour studios, design shows, little-known galleries and the latest boutiques, to put the range together.