This is a two part blog post so please make sure to read Part I here.
Should you avoid buying something that hangs in every house?
Do you go the extra mile to source out creative ideas or do you settle for the first thing you find in bulk? For those of you who value an authentic voice and your own identity, purchasing mass produced art is simply a shortcut to home decorating.
But every time you glance at your painting/art print/wall hanging, does it say something to you? Do you remember that “Aha!” moment when you found it? Or do you have a slight twinge of dissatisfaction because you know it’s a filler piece? You can make over your living room with Crate & Barrel, but the result is only as personal as the objects you choose.
While it might take more time and deliberation to create the perfect expression of your personality, authenticity is, as MasterCard says, priceless.
Buying original work lets you connect with the artists
There’s another reason why I champion buying original art. Think back to the Dafen example. I believe it’s great that the artists there can put food on the table by painting. Hey, we all have to live. But I doubt that much of the paintings’ profit actually goes into the pockets of the artists.
I run my own business and I know the hours of hard work, the moments of joyous discovery, and the real satisfaction of meeting people who like what they’re buying. This is something those artists in Dafen probably don’t get too often.
Purchasing art on a smaller scale – whether it’s shopping for roadside paintings, visiting local galleries, or purchasing from designers who create their own work – puts the artists first.
Not only can you find unique treasures that mesh with your sensibilities, but you’re helping to support the livelihoods of people who make a living doing that they love. And that’s good for everyone, right?
You’ll probably be more satisfied with your purchases, and you simultaneously help the artists spend more time creating work that makes people happy. You’re nurturing the local economy in a way that you wouldn’t be able to do if you were supporting the whole town of Dafen, for example.
Connect before your buy
If anything consumerism has taught us that our shopping habits often come from trying to fill a void, some inner dissatisfaction. The world is learning to slow down and think first. We ask more questions now than ever before about sourcing and ethics. We are finally learning to understand that “less is more”, that our quality of life will not get better with more. Getting your space to feel like “you” is a process that takes time. Embrace it. Your character and interests weren’t built overnight and so wasn’t your style. Take time to source, find and discover objects that make your feel something, remember something or make you happy.
I hope we learn to accumulate ‘wealth’ with experiences rather than things. I hope the things we bring into our homes speak of authenticity and your individualism rather than trends. I would like to see homes that reflect our inner voice and beliefs and not the latest sale at Kmart.
While I definitely think that your house should look smashing, I also hope that art speaks a little bit more to your true tastes. If we share the same interests, have your say in what you’d like to see next, especially if you follow me on Instagram or sign up to our newsletter below. You can trust that our products are ethically sourced and made to last. And your house certainly won’t look like a template.