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Buying Art as a Gift: Tips From an Expert

Do you have a special person on your holiday list that's hard to buy for? Why not get them an original piece of art. With a little thought, you can give them an original, meaningful gift that they'll treasure for years to come.

Author: Carl B Parker
Date: Dec 4, 2014 - 1:57:04 PM

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Well, it's December 1 and officially 'tis the season! It's time to deck the halls, have some eggnog and it's time to shop for your loved ones. But what do you buy for those you cherish? Picking out presents can be a daunting task, if not a bit boring at times; I mean come on, how many ties, nighties or pairs of socks can you really get someone? You want to get them something you know they'll love, something that shows how much you think of them, but what?

Hey, I have an idea ... how about a nice original piece of art! Art can be an awesome gift, one that shows the recipient that you're paying attention, paying attention to what they like, paying attention to what means something to them and what might look awesome in their space. Done right, giving an original piece of art as a Christmas gift can be a huge hit!

Do be careful, a person's taste in art is a very personal thing, much like a perfume, but with these tips, you can give your loved ones a beautiful gift that they'll treasure for years to come.

1. Pick something that has meaning to the recipient: Think about the person you want to buy for. What do they love? What are they passionate about? Does your mother love winter landscapes? Is your sister passionate about flowers? Is your romantic partner crazy for crows? Well, there you go, pick a piece that matches their passion. Not only will they receive a beautiful piece of art to display, but it will mean something to them, AND it shows that you've been paying attention, and isn't that what we all want, someone to pay attention to and to care about, what we love? I mean really,who needs yet another housecoat've got to spend the money anyway, you might as well give a gift with meaning.

2. Not ready to buy the big hardware? For you romantics out there, maybe you really adore your partner, but you know how it is, it's still early days, you're not quite ready to spend the obligatory 3 month's salary on the sparkling diamond just yet, but you really want to give your sweetie a gift that conveys your deep feelings, something full of passionate implications. Well ...enter art! Think about your gal, or guy and follow the advice in point 1 and you'll have a beautiful gift that shows him or her you truly care. And for those of you who already have the hardware, well, that's cool too. Maybe you're tired of getting hubby power tools ... what's wrong with a tasteful nude for his den (tee hee hee)?

3. Don't be afraid of your gut: When you're considering a piece for a gift, consider the following: 1. do you love it and 2. does your gut tell you the recipient will love it and that it would look super awesome in their space? Well, if so, go for it! In my experience, gut feelings are rarely, if ever, wrong. But be careful, you don't want to love the piece to the point of wanting it for yourself, it's probably not cool if you're driven to steal the piece off of the recipient's wall for your own after the holidays.

4. When in doubt, ask: If you're really in doubt, you can ask the intended recipient if they like the piece you have in mind. Send them a picture of what you're thinking of getting. People will generally be honest with you and may even give you helpful tips. If you really don't want to give the surprise away, you can do a couple of things:
1. be coy: It's not a lie really, but you could show them the piece you have in mind and say that you're thinking of buying it for yourself, or even for someone else (if you really want to throw them off), watch and listen to their reaction ... it will tell you loads!

2. If you're not cool with option 1, there's no harm in having a conversation with your friendly neighbourhood artist, he's here to help. Have a chat, tell him what you're thinking, tell him about the person, what they love, their passions, their interests, what kind of space they need to fill, all of that, and I'm sure he'd be happy to help you out. He'll show you what he has along the lines you're thinking, you'll not be insulting or bothering him, he loves to talk about hisart...alot!

5. Don't be afraid of abstracts: Some people freak out at the sight of an abstract piece, they're afraid they don't understand it. Well, now's the time to stop being afraid. It's just art and there's no test coming at the end of the purchase. It's really this simple, do you like the colours? Does the piece draw you in? Is there something about it that just makes you keep looking? Is there something about it that your gut tells you your intended recipient would feel the same way? Well then, you've got your answer and you've just bought your giftee a wonderful, unique gift!

6. Buy directly from the artist: Every time original art is collected and resold, the value goes up, making your beautiful and thoughtful gift not only THE gift of the season, but an investment too. And by buying direct, you'll save money and you'll be contributing to the creation of more beautiful work!

That's pretty much it. Happy holidays and happy shopping!

View all articles by Carl B Parker

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