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Five places to avoid hanging art February 17 2015

Five Places to Avoid Hanging Art

You've finally moved into your new home and have bought some art prints to decorate your walls. Well, finding places to hang art is easy. However there are certain places you should try to avoid hanging art for reasons of prolonging the life of the art print and also for the safety of your family members and visitors. This article will give you some pointers on places you should try to avoid hanging your art pieces if possible.

1. Narrow and dark corridors

Some homes, especially small apartments, have narrow and dark corridors leading from the living area to the bedrooms. As someone walking along the corridor will be of very close proximity to the walls, an art piece hanging there could be unnoticeable. If you still want to hang art in this area, stick to small art pieces, and group several of them together to add a nice balance. If the corridor is dark, use some lighting to bring focus to them. This will make the art pieces more noticeable to your visitors. Try not to use a large art piece in this area, as large pieces are better appreciated from a distance. Another thing to be concerned about when hanging art in small and narrow spaces is safety; avoid hanging it in an area where someone could accidentally knock it off the wall while walking by, causing damage to the frame and also hurting himself. To avoid someone brushing against the art piece and knocking it off, you could put a small side table against the wall to create some space between the art piece and human traffic.

2. Next to your child's bed

If you want to hang art pieces in your child's bedroom, avoid hanging it next to his bed or cot (If the bed is against the wall). If it is not hung high enough, your child could easily reach out and accidentally dislodge it from the wall, thereby hurting himself. Hang the art pieces in areas where your child can't easily reach them. Also, try to use small and light art pieces just in case your child dislodges it and it falls on him. To be on the safe side, you can avoid framing the art prints that you want to hang in the baby's room. Although this may look 'poster' like, it will definitely give you peace of mind that your child is safe.

3. Kitchen

You might see it often in interior design magazines. Hanging art in the kitchen could make it look a lot more beautiful. But for practical reasons, I would advise against doing that. This is especially so if you cook regularly. The oil and grease coming from the cooking could be damaging for your art in the long run. Try hanging it elsewhere; the dining area, if it is outside the kitchen, will be a good choice. If you still want to hang your art in the kitchen, you can do that but you should frame it with a good quality frame, and you also need to maintain it regularly by cleaning off the grease and grime that might accumulate over time.

4. Avoid hanging an art piece next to a mirror

Avoid hanging an art piece right next to a mirror. People almost always prefer to look at their own reflection rather than at art, no matter how beautiful it is. The mirror will pull attention away from the art piece. But that said; putting an art piece next to a mirror is still somewhat subjective. Some people do it and it still looks quite pleasant.

5. Anywhere that's in the path of direct sunlight

Avoid putting your art anywhere that's in the direct path of sunlight. The long term effects of sunrays could cause discoloring and fading of your art piece. Put it in an area that's shaded from direct sunlight, and use creative lighting to bring attention to it. Choose a good quality frame with ultraviolet filtering glass for extra protection against UV light.

There you have it! I hope the above pointers will help you in every little way to prolong the lifespan of your art pieces so that you, your family and friends can enjoy them for the years to come. Enjoy your art!

Copyright 2007 Edwin Mah

Edwin owns, an online art gallery offering more than 20,000 contemporary art prints for home and office decorating. Visit Abstract Prints for your interior decorating needs today!

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Art copyright laws December 22 2014

I have received several questions from customers pertaining to what they can do with the images displayed on Cow Art and More. These situations are specifically governed by copyright laws. I will go through a few of the situations here and explain what customers can and cannot do.

The moment someone creates anything "artful", the only person legally allowed to makes copies of that artwork is the original creating artist. If the artist decides to make copies (e.g. prints, multiple sculptures, etc.), he or she can. If anyone else does, without written permission from the creating artist, this is a copyright infringement. The artist has the legal right to take the offending party to court and sue for damages. In fact, copyright laws are so strong that family or legal heirs will still own the copyright to the artist's artwork until 70 years after his or her death.

Artists that display their work online or allow their art to be published in books or magazines often put a copyright symbol (letter c encased in a circle) next to the image. Just because the symbol isn't there doesn't mean you can copy the work; copyright is automatically implied when the art is created. The symbol is there as a reminder.

Art collectors should be aware that even after buying an original work of art, the artist still holds the copyright. This is what allows the artist to sell prints of the work. The buyer cannot make prints or sell copies of the art unless the artist has given express permission in writing. If you as the collector want to buy a piece of art, without giving the artist the right to make reproductions, please make this clear up front. If this is an artist that makes prints of their work, it is likely the artist will want to do so for that original piece. If you as the buyer want to also own the copyright, I would also suggest getting this fact in writing since the laws are written in the artist's favor.

There are three areas where I see art collectors fall into problems when it comes to copyrights and art work.

  1. You cannot use an artist's image for anything without their explicit consent. This includes using an image of the artwork to represent your business or organization. This is still the case even if you have purchased a copy of the artwork.
  2. You cannot download a copy of the artwork to use as a screen saver, t-shirt logo, avatar on your Facebook page, or other assorted activities without written consent from the artist. Even though you are using it for your own behalf, with no plans to resell, it is still considered "stealing" unless the artist has consented.
  3. This next area is a bit more fuzzy, but you cannot post a copy of the artwork on your own website, blog, facebook page, etc. without consent of the artist. Generally, if the artwork is identified with the creating artist, copyright symbol, and even a title and date created, problems can be averted. But without that identification, problems usually arise. Many artists like to have the publicity, so an email is usually all it takes to avoid problems. Nowadays with social media sharing buttons, I would suggest using one of them to "share" the artwork with others.
In general, the few copyright problems we have had to deal with have not been malicious in any way. People were just unaware of the laws and were happy to comply with our request once we asked not to use it in the manner they were.

My advice: when in doubt, ask. If you've made a mistake, rectify it. If you're caught, be honest.

Art collecting: Six Golden rules December 11 2014

Art Collecting: Six Golden Rules

Successful art collectors observe several golden rules of art collecting:


This should be obvious, but this golden rule is actually often given a low priority by novice art collectors, much to their regret later on. Remember, art is meant to be displayed and enjoyed. Don't buy anything which doesn't appeal to you.


You can never go wrong with buying any kind of art, as long as it gives you pleasure and it is within your budget. Buy what appeals to you. Art is individualistic, so go ahead and explore. You don't have to follow well-trodden paths and buy familiar art. Let art be an expression of your personality.

Do Your Research And Planning

For serious collectors who are interested in building a collection with some value, it's good advice to do some homework before you put your money down. Collecting is really about focus, or building a meaningful grouping of pieces, rather than just randomly acquiring and displaying pieces. Careful planning and research is what sets smart collectors apart from others.


The more you know about the subject, the better. This is especially important if you're considering parting with a hefty sum of money for a piece of 'art'. You don't need to be professionally trained to make smart decisions about art. Anyone can become a wise collector with patience and discipline.

Know Your Subject

Ask yourself why a particular piece of art is worth acquiring. Keep this mantra going in your head:

Who is the artist?
How important is the artwork?
What is the artwork's history and documentation?
Is the asking price fair?


If you're planning to collect art seriously, you should think beyond picking up just anything that catches your fancy. There are millions of collectors out there and plenty of piecemeal collections. What makes a collection superior to others and, therefore, more valuable?

Purpose And Planning

The smartest collectors plan every acquisition. They never collect in a haphazard way. Once they've decided what they like, they start planning some sort of order or characteristic for their collection. Smart collecting is organized. It is well thought-out so that all the pieces in the collection relate well to each other. Everything in the collection should work together to strengthen the collection, and not be out of place.

This is purposeful and planned collecting. A good collection should illustrate a point, or address a question, such as 'How has the use of colors in stone lithography progressed?' A good collection enhances understanding of a certain area of art, or even a certain period of an artist's life. It should have fine and, ideally, rare specimens of the subject. Brought together in a meaningful collection, each piece has more value.

Meaningful Organizing

You can organize your collection in various ways. Like an essay, it should have a beginning, a middle and an end. Using, as an example, the topic of colors in stone lithography, you can organize your collection under artists, regions, dates, styles, subject matter, and so forth. For instance:

- Artists renowned for stone lithography, which would obviously include master stone lithographer Edna Hibel. This grand dame is profiled in my art, collectibles and gifts website on this page:
- American stone lithography masters
- 20th century stone lithography
- Stone lithographs with people as the subject
- Renaissance-style stone lithography

Be Your Own Curator

Have a 'script' in mind. Just like for museums, you should aim to present your collection in a logical, meaningful way, so that it educates and enhances appreciation. Because of your diligent 'curatorial' efforts, viewers should bring away a better understanding of the subject.


Great collectors know the marketplace, and the marketplace knows them. Be informed and get plugged into the grapevine! Cultivate a good standing with art retailers and let them know that you wish to be informed when choice art pieces become available. You have to be tuned in to get the best finds!

Do your homework and get out there! I'll tell you how to have an edge in Part 4 of this series, titled 'KNOW THE ART MARKET'.


I've seen valuable creations ruined because of careless handling and storage. Don't let this happen to your art pieces. Develop a system to protect your collection from hazards such as pollution, humidity, heat and light.


Your art collection is a valuable legacy. Don't allow it to be decimated when you are no longer around to take care of it. Make detailed plans for its future ownership.

Have Fun Planning Your Collection!

Building a good collection takes time, but you will derive much satisfaction with each acquisition, knowing that the effort will be worth it. In fact, the process of developing a good collection is often as fun as it is rewarding, as you hunt down choice pieces through gallery visits, research, social events, leads, auctions and various avenues. A whole new world will open up to you!

About The Author

Copyright © 2006 Carol Chua. Carol Chua is an ex-corporate warrior who is now an entrepreneur, avid writer and co-owner of Cherish Collectibles, an online gallery of art, collectibles and gifts by multiple award-winning American artist Edna Hibel. Visit to see this renowned artist's beautiful artwork. Carol also co-owns an online jewelry store with a nature theme, featuring the creations of another award-winning artist, at

How to start an art collection for your home November 23 2014

1. DE-CLUTTER YOUR HOME - Before you begin you need to start with a 'blank canvas'; I'm sure if you had booked an art consultant or interior designer to make their recommendations you'd tidy up, so make this your starting point. It is also a fundamental feng shui principle that de-cluttering your environment will de-clutter your mind. If you don't have the time or the job is too big call in an expert.

2. THINK LIKE A GUEST - Now walk through your home imagining you're a visitor or guest so you can understand the logistics of entering your home for the first time and what impression or atmosphere you wish to create. Important areas from a guest's point of view are: the entrance (this is their first impression) the path from the entrance to the main living/entertaining area and an outdoor area if you have one. Look for what you think they would notice: as you enter your home, is it obvious where the kitchen/living areas are from the entrance; are private rooms or areas such as bedrooms 'on show' as guests walk through the house to the living area. Can any outdoor areas be seen from the main living area?

3. DETERMINE ZONES - This time, when you walk through your home again, think from your own perspective and classify it the following zones; entrance (front garden, path, front door, entry) traffic zones (hallways, gardens) formal entertaining (dining room) informal entertaining (family room, games room) function-specific zones (home theatre, kitchen) private zones (bathroom, toilet, bedrooms) business zone (home office, studio). This will assist you to think about where to place art plus what purpose or mood you wish to create in each zone.

4. MAP WHERE YOU WOULD LIKE ARTWORK - List each zone and room and table the atmosphere you wish to achieve and the number of artwork to suit the space.

5. DO SOME RESEARCH - Through your own research you will feel more confidence to make an informed decision when you discuss your needs or view art with an art consultant, interior designer, gallery manager or artist. Plus as you regularly go back to research you will gain an increased knowledge about art and therefore a deeper understanding which will only enhance your appreciation of your collection. To begin:

'Google it' search online about art buying advice and tips
Browse online art galleries
Look for articles in your local newspaper about local artists, exhibitions and galleries
Visit local Art Galleries
Talk to local gallery managers and artists as you meet them

6. LIST YOUR PREFERENCES (STYLE, SIZE, MEDIUM) - Return to your planning chart again after your research to put in your preferences of style, size and medium. Style refers to if the artwork is classified within a broad category such as Abstract, Traditional (landscape) or (figures), Surrealism, Pop Art, Impressionism, Digital Art, Still Life, Realism and many more.

Size mainly described as dimensions in centimetres. Also be aware if the dimensions include framing or not. For an average home artwork around 60 x 80 cm would be considered a medium size and 80 x 130 considered a large size. Obviously this is completely subjective and the best thing to do is get the measuring tape out.

Medium is what the artist used to create the artwork. For example, oil means oil paint, acrylic means acrylic paint, watercolours, ink, pencil, charcoal and many more. Mixed Media is simply when an artist mixes mediums together. For example, some artists bind Acrylic paint and a texture medium (sand) together.

7. SET YOUR BUDGET - A fundamentally important step, however also be sure you're expectations are realistic, your earlier research should assist you in this area. This is important because if you 'blow your budget' then you are not going to view the artwork with a positive frame of mind but rather a resentful one. Also, ask if flexible payment options are available. Most galleries and art consultants offer payment plans over a 3 to 6 month period or an art rental service so you can 'try before you buy'.

8. RAISE YOUR OWN AWARENESS OF INVESTMENT POTENTIAL OF ART AND ARTISTS - When beginning a home art collection it is good to remember you need to live with the artwork therefore it needs to be appealing to you. However you can also begin to consider the future investment potential of the artwork you're purchasing. At the most fundamental level, check the artist is active i.e. is regularly producing new work for exhibitions and awards, have won any awards, received any reviews of note or are apart of art investors collections. This is important if your art collection is later to be considered as part of your investment portfolio and if you decide to on sell any of your collection in the future.

9. LESS IS MORE - Often when you're in the middle of this process and you've found a style or artist you simply love you can become quite excited and simply want more, more, more. While this is great, you also want don't want to 'overdo' it. Simplicity in most things is always a good rule including art. Therefore if you are deciding on three pieces for the one room and you simply can't decide on the final third piece. Then, purchase the two you're sure about and either hire the third or just take some time to think.

10. PURCHASE YOUR ARTWORK - Now you have completed your planning and research which has built up your confidence to go purchase the art that is right for you and your home. Remember you don't have to do it all at once. It can be a gradual process of building up your art collection - a journey you can enjoy. Or if you don't have the time, simply rent a collection and purchase the ones you love and continue to rent until you have all the pieces you want.

You will know when it is right because as you 'live' with a piece of artwork you become familiar with it and will also learn when is the best time of day to view it and the mood you feel when you view it. If you feel the atmosphere you intended to create has been achieved and your collection is a conversation point with your visitors and guests then you know it is right for you and your home. Please note, all of us react very differently to artwork often because of the emotion we are already carrying around in our heads, therefore a reason why art is such a great conversation starter.

© 2009 Interactive Arts
WANT TO USE THIS REPORT IN YOUR E-NEWSLETTER OR WEB SITE? Yes you can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Online entrepreneur Fleur Allen publishes the popular quarterly e-newsletter Art Notes. If you're ready to find out more about art and collecting art for your home or office then join the Interactive Arts Creative Community with like-minded people growing their art collections.

Fleur Allen is committed to introducing Art to every home and office. Art is a life-long passion and Fleur educates and advises private and business clients of how to begin their art collection to transform their homes and offices and therefore transform their lives. As an Art Manager, Art Curator, wife, mother and the owner of a successful home-based business:
Interactive Arts offers articles, special reports, tips, exclusive art exhibition invitations, flexible art payment plans including our popular Art Rental Service. Sign up at

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Choosing the right sized painting for a room October 19 2014

This is a question most often asked too late, while you are out shopping at a gallery, an artist's studio or at an art event. This should be decided first, while you are considering an art purchase. If you have the correct size and format orientation before you shop, you will be less likely to make a significant mistake, saving yourself and the artist heartache and disappointment.

Think about the orientation first. Would a square, horizontal, or vertical orientation work better in the room? If it is a large wall, would a pair of squares make a nice grouping side by side or stacked rather than one painting? Do you prefer an unframed contemporary style with panels or deep gallery wrap paintings? Do you prefer traditional wide framing? If you will be framing the work, allow for an additional 4-6 inches in width for the framing in each direction when planning the size on the wall.

Now that you have made these decisions, it's time to test out your desires before you shop. Go to an office supply store and buy a roll of brown craft paper and a roll of blue painter's tape. Use a measure and pencil to cut out painting sizes (don't forget to add the size of the frame). Tape the paper where you plan to hang your painting, then step back and see how the size and format will look on the wall. Try more than one to make sure you choose the best possibility. Now you can shop for paintings with confidence and be less of an impulse shopper.

How to flatten rolled art prints October 14 2014

How to Flatten a Rolled Map or Poster

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Rolled wall maps or posters are hard to put on the wall if they're trying to roll back up. Here's how to get them to straighten up.


Roll your poster opposite from the way that it curls. Start loose and tighten it up as you go, to avoid creasing it. Sometimes this is enough to flatten it, depending on the paper and how long it has been rolled.

Wrap rubber bands around your opposite-rolled poster.

Let your poster sit like this for a few hours.

Remove the rubber bands and place your poster flat on a clean surface. Put it so that the side towards which it's curling.

Smooth out the poster and place weights on the corners and in the center of your poster for 2 to 4 hours. Books are a good choice.

Remove the weights.

Hang the poster.


  • If your poster continues to curl after completing step 5, keep the weights on for longer.
  • Good substitutes for paperweights include smooth rocks, glass jars, bean bags, and heavy books. Don't put heavy weights on the poster on a soft surface. The poster could crinkle.
  • Work gently to avoid crinkling the poster.
  • If you place the poster on the floor to flatten it, make sure it is out of the way so that nobody steps on it.


Ironing does not work for flattening posters.
If you want to flatten a vintage poster, please take it to a professional.
If you want to laminate a poster, flatten it first.
Do not use rubber bands that have ink stamps on them, as they may stain your paper.

Related wikiHows

How to Cover Your Room With Posters
How to Mount a Map or Poster Without Damaging It
How to Center a Heading on a Poster or Other Headline
How to Make a Poster

Article provided by wikiHow, a wiki how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Flatten a Rolled Map or Poster. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

Art Collecting for beginners October 04 2014

Collecting fine art is an inspiring and stimulating hobby for everyone, not just for the rich or famous. There are many forms of art to choose from, as the definition to what art actually is differs from person to person. It doesn't matter what form it takes, the choice is yours in what is attractive and how much your spending limit will be.

As an artist going to college in New York, it has been apparent to me that some aficionados of art may look down on others for their differing tastes in art. For example, there are those who only buy originals, and never prints. For enjoyment purposes, an original isn't necessary to own if the price is out of your budget. Prints are a great way to own framed art that looks lovely on your wall, as an original would, at a fraction of the price. Ok, you won't have the same texture to the painting (the surface of an original can show texture and dimension, whereas a print won't). But, a well printed piece of artwork is not settling by all means. My walls are graced with the art prints of other artists, bought fairly inexpensively online, at art fairs and galleries. They are tasteful and not cheap looking.

When you find a print or original that you like, you can either frame it yourself or have someone else do it for you. Frames come in a huge price range, from the lower priced metal frames to the ornate, hand carved wooden frames that can cost big bucks. Using a mat, which is a way of framing the picture inside the frame using illustration board or papers, can set off or detract from your print. For those who don't know framing, take your picture and have it framed first, then watch how they offer you various mats and frame styles. Take your time and choose what color combination of mat, frame and artwork would look tasteful and appropriate in your home. For a clean, contemporary look, a good type is the inexpensive but still elegant Nielsen brushed metal frame. They come in many colors, but black or bronze are safe to start with. When selling my artwork in galleries, I use bronze ones because they make my art look good, and don't cost a fortune. After all, many people who buy art in galleries have the art re-framed after they buy it, to match their home décor. If wood is more your style, there are some lovely, natural, stained wood frames. My preference is cherry or mahogany for my home, because they have a deep, rich reddish color that looks elegant. The style you choose is up to you, just remember that you'll be living with it for awhile, and so think of what you want to see on your wall for an extended period of time. You can re-frame later, of course, but to save money, choose something that you'll be happy with so that won't be necessary later.

Whether you like prints, originals or other forms of art, enjoy whatever you choose. To me, the purpose of art is to enrich our surroundings, add beauty to a room and convey a mood or interest. Everyone has their own views, so go with what stirs your emotions or interest. Have a budget in mind and stick to it, as most art is for personal use, not for investment. If you buy the work of someone famous, the piece may have value but who knows what tomorrow will bring. So, first and foremost, go with what interests you. That way, if reselling it isn't going to give you much (if any) profit later, it will still make your wall look beautiful, As a professional artist, I want my clients to love their purchases, and be happy that they own whatever they bought from me. Other artists want you to be happy too. Art is for enjoying, so don't be afraid to try collecting. Chances are, you'll be hooked once you do.

Carolyn McFann is a scientific and nature illustrator, who owns Two Purring Cats Design Studio, which can be seen at: Educated at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York, Carolyn is a seasoned, well-traveled artist, writer and photographer. Clients include nature parks, museums, scientists, corporations and private owners. She has been the subject of tv interviews, articles for newspapers and other popular media venues.

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