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Eight simple steps to enliven your home or office with engaging artwork by local artists

Online art sales are booming. With in-person gatherings at a minimum and more people searching for balance and beauty to combat a tumultuous 2020, buying original art online is becoming more commonplace.

The latest addition of the annual Online Art Trade Report optimistically estimates an average future growth rate of 15% annually for online art sales, which would bring its total sales to $9.32 billion by 2024.

Hisox Art Trade Report

Embrace Creatives is on a mission to connect professional, local artists and their soulful work with people who appreciate our creative community and are searching for original art online but don’t know where to start. We showcase original art for sale but we also want to make it as easy as possible for our buyers to feel empowered when making their important, art purchase. 

Below I’ll share steps you should be taking when looking for art for your home or office and help you buy original art online with confidence.

Why buy original art online?

There’s pros and cons about online purchasing. Consumers have access to a dizzying array of options when searching for pretty much anything they want to buy; electric toothbrushes, placemats, black sweaters, etc., which is exciting but too many choices can be overwhelming for some. 

And in the art world, experiencing pieces in person: size, texture and emotional impact, is extremely important in determining whether the work of art is a good fit and unfortunately, online images don’t convey those messages well.

But as one can’t view every artwork they like in a physical setting and there are many art galleries online, taking advantage of the ease and accessibility of buying art online is a great way to enhance your home with a heartfelt, unique and beautiful piece, if you’re smart about it.

One huge benefit of buying art online is the ability to stumble upon and purchase work by professional artists outside your town, state and region. Sure EC wants you to support local artists first but to us, investing in original art from any reliable artist is important, so use online art sourcing to expand your horizons and branch out!

Ready to buy art online with confidence?  Let’s do this…

- How To Buy Original Art Online 1
Cypress II I 24″H X 30″W I oil and spray paint on canvas by Michael Gute

1 I Find the professionals

There’s a lot of art out there and too many are low quality or are crafted by artists who aren’t business savvy which can make what should be an exciting purchase, a horrifying experience. When buying art online, it’s really important to begin with a company that offers legitimate works of art by artists who are not only exceptionally talented but also reliable, communicative and responsible. The last thing you want is to end up with artwork that you didn’t order, be stuck with a damaged piece you can’t return, or wait days for an answer to your important question.

- How To Buy Original Art Online 2
Big Squiggle Red I 72.4″H X 36.5″W I MDF, Enamel, Walnut by Erika Cross

2 I Plan ahead

Wandering through an online art gallery is an enjoyable experience but it can be frustrating if you’re ready to purchase but aren’t sure what type of art you’re looking for, the size you need to fill, or your actual budget. 

Measure the areas you want to fill with artwork; height, width and also check the depth. If you’re placing artwork behind a couch, a bed or chairs, determine how far away from the wall the artwork can extend before it hits someone in the head.

Then jot down the medium you’re looking for; painting, paper, sculpture for a wall, glass or metal sculpture for the floor and paper or glass lighting or a mobile for the ceiling but keep an open mind in case something special pops out at you

Choose the color ways; warm colors (reds, pinks, yellows), cool colors (blues, purples, greens), a mix of color or neutral colors (greys or creams). 

What’s the most you can invest? Know your budget and remember to add padding for possible shipping, insurance and sales tax charges.Next, what’s the mood you’re interested in? Florals? Figurative? Abstract? Landscapes? Geometric? The online gallery you choose should have a variety of options you can use to filter out the artwork that won’t suit your needs.

Our experts will guide you to the right art.

Chat with an Advisor
- How To Buy Original Art Online 3
Ambiguous Overgrowth I 17.25″H X 22.4″W I Oil based inks on BFK Reeves paper by Ann McIntyre Studio

3 I Determine your timeline

Are you looking for new artwork for a specific occasion, a gift or merely to uplift your home or office? No matter the reason, set a time frame or else you can go on looking and looking and looking… 

Create a folder in your computer to save the URLS and descriptions from the artwork you find online. That way you can go back to it and compare.

When developing Embrace Creatives I added a “favorite” button you can click whenever you see art or design products you want to save to view later. Official, EC accounts can place their favorited artwork in especially labeled folders like “living room”, “florals” or “under $500” to better manage their findings AND they save 10% off their first purchase!

And if you get stuck or confused, make sure the company you’re working with offers expert art advising. Embrace Creatives offers free art consultation to easily guide you to the perfect, handcrafted piece and we’ll will manage a special, made-to-order project for artwork unique to you.

- How To Buy Original Art Online 4
Tea Cup 5 I 19″H X 19″W X 8″D I Stained glass, gold, Italian smalti mosaic by Michelle Sider

4 I Read artwork descriptions

Now that you’ve determined the size, color rage and emotion of the pieces you’re looking for, it’s necessary to review the artwork information. The artist will enter the artwork’s size, weight, and materials for each piece they list for sale so you can match it to your needs. Reading the artwork description also gives you the artwork story and details about the specific components of the work, any installation instructions, and if it is a reproduction or original.

If you see a piece that’s just outside of the dimensions, reach out to the company to see if the artist will reproduce the work in a more compatible size.

- How To Buy Original Art Online 5
Rain Walk I 20″H X 14″W I Archival Pigment Print by Jessica DeMuro

5 I Learn about the artist

An educated buyer is my most favorite buyer. Why? Because I know they are really and truly invested in the purchase. Knowing about the professional artist who took the time to create the amazing work you’re interested in adds to the connection to the artwork. Who’s behind the work of art? What did they feel while creating it? What’s their professional path? What’s their story?

Go past the artwork to the artist themselves. Read about them in the profile offered through the online gallery you choose. Get to know them. Artists pour their heart and soul into their creations and they want to know that the people who purchase their works are also interested in them as artists.

Here, in our online showroom we give our EC artists the opportunity to shine by showcasing their accomplishments and professional background in their Store. Some artists have even included a short introduction video to give you a private glimpse into their studios. To view the EC artists, click on their name under the artwork title and price.

Bonus! When you go past the artwork to the artist, themselves, you can share, with pride what you know about the creator of the artwork you just purchased!

- How To Buy Original Art Online 6
Grifology #1 I 60″H X 60″W I traditional quilting techniques by Debbie Grifka

6 I Ask questions

When using an online art market make sure there’s an expert available to answer your questions. Buying art can be confusing for those who don’t have art world experience and it’s important to inquire if you’re confused or unsure about a potential purchase.

Smaller companies may not have the staff to offer 24/7 chat but they should give you an easy way to contact them and they should respond in a timely fashion.

And get to know the people BEHIND the platform. Are they actually in the arts? What’s their background? Are they committed to supporting artists or only in business to make money?  

Customer service and relationship building is an important aspect of a reliable and trustworthy business so if an online art gallery or showroom doesn’t state they want to get to know their clients or showcase the people in charge, you may not get the compassionate buying experience you deserve.

Wall Flowers II I 23″H X 19″W I Prismacolor Pencil, India Ink on Rag Bristol by Helena Kuttner-Gaisson

7 I Demand a secure purchase

No one wants the fear of theft or the hassle of canceling a credit card because of an insecure payment method. Credit or debit card payments tend to be the safest, with alternative forms of payment such as PayPal as another trusted form.

When building EC, I chose Stripe’s secure SSL technology that keeps credit card details safe, and Pay Pal as the two payment options. EC account holders can easily add their preferred credit or debit card directly into their dashboard making all purchases a breeze. All credit card information is held securely by Stripe, not EC.

And for those who want to pay in installments Pay Pal offers an interest-free, four payment option you can choose at checkout. You receive your artwork in a timely fashion but can take the time to pay it off.

With many galleries going online, and an increase in online art markets, it’s getting easier to purchase art via the internet. And you may find “love at first sight” when you’re searching for the right artwork for your living room or kitchen walls. And when you fall in love with a piece of art,  you can learn more about the artist through their professional documents, video and whatever else the online platform showcases so you’re even more comfortable purchasing the original art.

Buying art online is a convenient way to browse an array of artwork and design products for your home and office, from all over the country.

And even if you’re NOT ready to purchase yet, sign up for the art platform’s newsletter then go into their shop because scrolling through brilliant, colorful, inspiring works of art is uplifting! So if you need a pick-me-up, settle in front of your screen and pursue. You never know when the right piece will jump out beckoning you to learn more and purchase it for your very own. And with this handy guide, you’re better equipped to purchase original art with confidence!

Hey, what are you waiting for? It’s time to begin your very own art collection.

This article was written by Andrea Bogart, professional artist, lead art consultant and the founder of Embrace Creatives, matching you with original art to love.


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