Saturday 6 August 2016

Collecting Art, Your Own Way

A couple of weeks ago, I spent a whole day going through my online shop, decluttering and reorganizing. Somehow I ended up randomly looking at the items that have sold since I opened the shop in 2011. Originals, prints, custom artworks, and even quite a few things I created out of a whim. It's always wonderful when someone reach out and purchase my work. Appreciation is simply the best possible reward for artists like myself. It is no wonder now we see all kinds of artists popping up, thriving throughout all corners of the world, each with their own band of followers who admire and collect their work.

So are you one of these people? If you happen to be a strong admirer of a particular artist, then you are bound to purchase at least one of their art pieces. Some people may have even started their own little collection. But the question is, how do you really become an art collector? Here's what I think...

Maurice Sapiro, Reflections in a Golden Pond, oil on canvas

First of all, Broaden Your Horizon. 

There is a whole world of boundless imagination and creativity out there. Artists from all kinds of art genres, different kinds of styles and accomplishments to suit your every taste. Fine art, contemporary, and decorative are the main categories to consider, each with a wide selection to choose from. Paintings, drawings, sculpture are the most popular forms that people collect, but don't get me started on the number of styles you can feast your eyes on. The list just goes on forever.

James Jean, Portrait (Girl), acrylic on wood panel
Martin Wittfooth, Lantern, oil on panel

Once you have a wider knowledge of art, it's time to Explore and Hunt.

Spend time visiting art galleries and auction houses to experience the real business of collecting art. Check out exhibitions and art venues to get the feel in person, but if you have little time to spare, surfing the internet is a definite option. There are plenty of sites that actually offer a wide variety of art, in both originals and reproductions.

Painting Exhibition Taiwan painter Huang Tsai Sung
Amy Sol's solo show, Numina

After you have found the art you love, Set Yourself a Reasonable Budget.

Now, contrary to popular belief, you don't have to own a mansion and sports cars parked in your garage to be an art collector. These days, art comes to suit various economical levels. Some are friendly enough for your pockets, some are not so friendly. It's really just a matter of drawing a clear line and staying within your budget. Although, mind you, many people have experienced that this budget can grow along with the depth of your passion. So take caution, once you are in love, there will always be a tendency to reach deeper into those pockets.

Yellena James, Mitra
Mister Finch, Mushroom sculptures
When you have bought your first piece or art, remember to Cherish and Enjoy.

What's the point of becoming an art collector if you don't enjoy your purchase, right? Place your art piece where everyone can admire it and prepare a space where a real collection can grow. This will allow you to add more art pieces in time, because it is a known fact that a collector will never likely to be satisfied with just one.

Ozabu, Chiyo, graphite and acrylic on paper
Elsa Mora, papercut artwork

Lastly, and a very important point is, Treat Your Collection as an Investment.

Never underestimate the value of art. If you have excellent taste and sharp instinct, use them to the maximum by purchasing the kind of art that is potentially valuable. Some people go to all the trouble doing extensive research on a piece of art, and some just know it in their guts when they see it. Either way, you should try to see your collection as something that might prove to be essential to your financial well being in the future.

Well, there you have it, just my point of view on art collecting and how to see it from different angles. I realize that people collect art for various reasons, but I know that the one thing in common is simply because we love it. If you feel like reading more about the topic, this article might help to enlighten you further.

That's it for now, have a smashing weekend, everyone!

Best wishes,

Thursday 28 July 2016

The Girl with No Face

If there is one thing I have learnt over the years about being an artist, is that we are forever changing and continuously evolving. In my own personal cases, my work tends to show changes when I become restless or unsure about something essential. This, I'm afraid, has happened quite a lot in the past. Not very practical, I know, but it is how it is. It is who I am.

Given the state of mind and emotional changes I went through over the past few months, I have noticed some drastic developments in my work. It was to be expected, of course. Like all sudden changes, I had my share of hard times dealing with them. And like many times before, learning to accept them is usually the easier way to go...

Those of you who have continued following my posts over at Instagram may have seen this change. Is it temporary or permanent? That question stays unanswered until today. All I know is that my work, myself both as a person and an artist is a working progress. I don't think any of us stays the same through time. Our world, the people in our lives and the personal experiences we encounter will continue to shape us as a person. Maybe this is one of the bumps in the road that have truly shaken me, enough to wake me up completely and really look around with open eyes.

I don't suppose I'll see the last of these changes. For better or worse, I know that the only way to do now is to embrace it. Because again, it is how it is. It is who I am.

Have you ever experienced anything like this before? If so, please share your stories here with us. I know we can only benefit from them.

Your friend,

Saturday 23 July 2016

Project Happiness

While I was away in my own little island, I tried my best not to wander off too much from my usual routines. I didn't want my family to think there was anything wrong and I knew confining myself into my studio would bring up all sorts of questions that I wouldn't be able to answer. After all, taking a break from the world doesn't necessarily mean you have to cut yourself off from the ones you love. So I carried on with my life. Took care of the kids, did the chores, even let myself work every now and then.

Here is one of the projects that actually kept me happy...

As a little girl, I grew up adoring Pooh and his friends. I remember having all kinds of collectible items in my possession...dolls, books, figurines, clothes, name it, I probably got it! So you can imagine how thrilled I was when I was asked to work on this special commission. To recreate the whole gang in their original classic style, from scratch. All the long hours and hard labor really paid off when I finally got them all gathered up for their group shot. Now, don't they look cute? :)

I'm glad that I decided to keep my hands busy during my troubled period. It can be lonely up there in my head, and working on these guys brought back some wonderful childhood memories. I'm so thankful mine was a happy one.