Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Selling and Buying Art - Does your wall art match your sofa pillows?

Selling and Buying Art - Does your wall art match your sofa pillows?

Often time’s artists and gallery staff scoff at decorators that want art that matches their sofa pillows. It seems so silly that someone would want to furnish and decorate a room around a $20 throw pillow, but that’s not what’s going on here. That pillow represents the decorator’s artistic view. A decorator is creating a new original artwork, the actual room or setting. That pillow is a memory-aid to this work-in-progress. It keeps the decorator focused on the colors, themes, space and light of their vision.

Artists that fail to understand the true needs of the decorators are missing an opportunity to serve them. As artists, most of us love collaborations on our works-in-progress. We're all more receptive to advice and change during the creation process, and so are decorators. Decorators as artists have the same creative spirit as painters, photographers, or any other artists. They want to explore their medium, be creative, and get feedback. Help them wade through the overwhelming selection of artwork, frames, etc. that are available to them. Help them avoid the newbie or common mistakes. These can be great opportunities to get a following and for custom or commissioned work. Even the decorator may not be used to thinking of themselves as an artist. Help them see that artist in themselves and what they are really looking for; it’s more than a color match.

Sofa pillows should make you excited because someone is going to show you a WIP. Try to understand it just as you would any other piece of art; ask questions and get involved in their vision (did they take any cell-phone pictures of the space?). Treat pillow-carrying decorators as you would want your own artistic efforts treated; with respect and appreciation. Even if your work doesn't have a place in this particular WIP, then just the understanding you show for that decorator’s vision will bring them back the next time. It also gives your real insight into what’s selling. Decorators are artistic peers; as artists their visions is MORE valid then yours because it’s their artwork. As a professional, you offer your experience to help them achieve that vision, not defeat it. If you talk someone into something they hate then they (and anyone who listens to them) will never come back.

But here is the final reason why you want your art to match the sofa pillow, because just as the pillow is the overall connector on the WIP stage, then your art will hopefully become that connector to the finished project. It is you art that now says what the space is about, and connects the furnishings; your physical art has replaced what was just an artistic vision in the decorators mind into a new original work that’s incomplete without it.