A guide to buying art, all the questions you ever wanted to ask…
If you have seen a painting in an exhibition and you are now wishing you had bought it, you can arrange to view by appointment. If you are thinking of buying a piece of art and are wondering what I have available, you are welcome to make an appointment to come and see what work I have.
Will I have to decide there and then?
Absolutely not, buying art for your home is a big commitment and often expensive, so I don’t expect anyone to make an on the spot decision. You can go home and mull it over.
Can a painting be delivered?
I can deliver work locally, I can arrange a specialist art courier if you are further afield.
How does it work if I want to commission a painting?
People are often shy about approaching an artist to ask about getting a personal picture painted for various reasons, but here are a few thoughts to try and explain the process and make it a bit less intimidating. All artists work differently, but this is how I operate!
Some common questions….
Do you paint anything?
I paint seascapes and landscapes, I don’t paint portraits, people, pets, houses etc. I mostly paint using oil.
How much will it cost?
When you get in touch it is a good idea to have in mind what size painting you are looking for, where it going to go etc or how much you are budgeting. Some people ask ….’ I’d like a painting 50x50cm, how much will that cost?’ Others ask ‘what size could I get for £400? I can also give you a selection of sizes and prices to give you an idea of the cost. Prices are generally based on the size and complexity of the painting. I mostly paint on deep edge canvas that is ready to hang, so you don’t need to frame, this is less expensive for the client. Cost including basic framing can be arranged and discussed. If a client is wanting a piece framed, I would on completion of the painting take it to the framers for a quote with various framing options, or the client can take it to be framed themselves. All works on paper are framed behind glass either with a mount (card surround) or ‘floating’ ( stuck on, slightly raised from the background) . All framing is done with acid free paper / card to ensure the painting lasts and the mount doesn’t go yellow with age.
What if I enquire about the cost and then it’s too expensive, will you be offended?
No! This an important and normal part of business, sometimes people need to know the cost, so they can save up, some people find out the cost and realise its way more than they thought. That is fine!
Why are there no prices on the website or on social media?
Paintings are often bought as special gifts or as a surprise, so partially it is to protect the client’s privacy, prices are not made public. Prices are also often higher if a painting is in a gallery to consider the 50% commission they take on sales.
I want to buy a painting as a surprise gift, can I be assured it will be kept a secret?
Yes. I usually publish my finished paintings on social media, this includes commissions, however I always ensure before publication that the final recipient has been given the painting, so as not to ruin anything special .
Can I make cards or extra prints of a painting I have commissioned or bought?
I am afraid not, whilst you own the painting, I still retain the copyright. I do make some prints of my work, however out of courtesy to the client I generally do not make prints from commissions as they are personal. I would aim notify the client if this was to change.
Do I have to pay anything up front?
No, I will send the client an invoice once they are happy with the painting. Some people like to see the work in person, some are happy to receive a digital image.
Can I pay in instalments?
We can discuss, don’t be afraid to ask.
What if I really like the painting apart from one part?
You must say! Things can be changed …. I once painted a picture of a place I was unfamiliar with, I worked from a photograph (there were boats involved ….) and the client fed back to me that it didn’t look busy enough, so I added more boats and more people. This kind of feedback is good, because it helps get a feel of the location. Also, sometimes there might be a mark or drip that is drawing the eye away from the painting, again easily rectified.
What if you finish the painting and I don’t like it, will I have to pay?
I would hope that the discussions prior to starting a painting would be thorough enough to avoid this happening, but no, you would not have to buy the painting if you really didn’t like it.
It is important in the early stages of the process that the client tells the artist what they like and don’t like. Some people do not like the more abstract pieces I paint with drips, for example, so I have had clients before asking for seascapes, without the drips, they wanted something more contained and traditional. It is helpful to use references on my website or Facebook page to explain what you like and what you don’t. It will be your painting, that you will have to live with so it’s good to say at the beginning. Some people are less specific and ask for a big splashy one and leave it at that! it really depends what you are looking for. Sometimes I have been given paint samples from a lounge wall, so I know the colours will match in. All this information is helpful.
Can I request you paint a copy of a painting you have already done and has been sold?
You can, due to the style of my work it will not be an exact copy, but depending on the specific image, I could do similar or in the style of ….
Can the picture be personalised?
Yes, I have often been asked to included children or families on beach scenes. They are usually very tiny, but recognisable to the client. In these cases, I have used photos of children in their beach wear and added them in, so don’t worry if your beautiful photo of your perfect beach doesn’t have your children in …. I can add them (or remove if you want an empty beach!).
If you are into words or have a special poem, or message you want to convey, it is possible to have these written into your painting, usually this is done in pencil, or within the wet paint itself and is quite subtle.
The more information I am given about what you want and why the better as this gives me a feel of how to work. It’s all about the conversation.
Will my photos be kept safe?
Any photographs that are sent to me digitally are kept safe and not shared on social media, they will then be deleted on satisfactory completion of the work.
Can you paint a specific place, for example, a favourite beach?
Yes, the client will send me some photographs of that place or pull some from the Internet, if there is a specific scene they like, in a certain location. I then print the photographs and create a rough sketch of how I see the painting working before I start on the main piece.
How long will I have to wait?
If you have a certain date you would like a painting done by, the sooner you get going the better. 6 weeks is the minimum turnaround time, I need to allow time for work dry, possibly for framing which can take 2 weeks sometimes. If you need something in less time, it’s always good to ask, It maybe that I have the time.
I don’t live locally, how will I receive my painting?
For larger pieces I use a very reliable specialist Art courier, the cost of this is around £50, for medium / smaller size pieces they can be very well packaged and posted safely, with adequate insurance.