Is art for everyone? That depends. I could probably write pages and pages on this topic, but it's a blog, not a master thesis - I have written one and it was literally a book. I am not going into what is art, which would include movies, plays, books, etc etc etc because in that sense, art is for everyone and it depends on what they like to consume. So let us talk about fine art. Is fine art for everyone? How about owning a piece of original art?
Before I started on this journey, I always enjoyed drawing and painting, even as a kid I would spend hours drawing whatever popped into my mind. Because I devoured graphic novels - mainly Marvel and DC, I would draw superheroes. Then I went through a more fine art phase painting on canvas and all that - not superheroes. I never thought about how much it would cost to own an original work of art. We had beautiful oil paintings in my home, some done by my mother and grandmother. We went to galleries and enjoyed pieces by Van Gogh, Picasso, Monet, Turner, Renoir, etc Pieces that when are sold in auction, a piece of my soul wants to die at the ridiculous prices they go for. I am not going to to into the matter of imagine what that money could buy and how many hungry mouths it could feed.
I still go to galleries, especially since London has amazing ones such as both Tates, the National Gallery, the Royal Academy, The Courtauld, to name the main ones. I also visit commercial galleries, especially when some of my favourite contemporary artists' works are on show. But I always knew I would never be able to afford an original piece and depending on the artist, not even a print. However, for the sort of art I like, a print would never do the artwork justice. Why? Because I absolutely love paintings that pop, the ones that you look at from far away and they attract you like a magnet and once you're there, face to face with it, you can see the layers of paint, the underpainting showing there the artist placed a quick thin stroke, or those places where the paint lies thickly and the colours are't fully mixed and you can name each colour in that stroke - in short, the sort of artwork I decided to paint. You usually hear writers say "write the sort of story you would like to read", so I basically decided to paint the sort of art I would like to see and own, but can't afford.
Have you ever seen Starry Night over the Rhone by Van Gogh in person? It is absolutely breath taking. The colours are still absolutely alive and so bright it is a painting I could just stare at for hours. I then went into the Van Gogh exhibition shop afterwards and was so sad and disappointed at the dullness of the print, I left empty handed.
I want art lovers to be able to buy something that doesn't disappoint them. People like me who look at the original and then look at a print and no matter how well the picture comes, or the quality of the print, become disappointed. (Might I add I am not talking about paintings where you can't see a brush stroke and you can't tell the original and copy apart, of digital art prints.... that's a completely different matter). A print where the paint isn't coming out at you and trying to envelope you in a spiral of colours is just sad - in my opinion, might I add, in case it wasn't obvious.
So let's get back to affordability. Bearing in mind the cost of materials, an artist's time, time spent on education, studying, the many books consumed, videos watched, research put into a piece, classes attended all that so that we can eventually manage to paint something that looks remotely to what we had in mind costs. And you, as an art lover, have decided you want that work of art that took an artist many hours to complete. Don't be disrespectful and try to haggle, instead, try to figure out if an artist accepts installments, or tell the artist your budget and come to a sensible agreement, a smaller piece, maybe even a commission.
All this to say that not all my artwork can be a print, especially my newest work as I will be using impasto techniques. Affordability is relative, but I hope to make smaller, more affordable pieces for those who want an original piece that stands out. I will discuss commissions with your budget in mind. But I will also be making large pieces which could be considered not affordable to some - because I love painting in large scale and watching all the colours swirl and move and stand out occupying my entire vision. The price of those pieces will reflect the time spent on them in addition to materials and all those hidden elements I have already touched upon.
Owning an original work of art isn't for everyone, but I will try my best to make art that suits every budget.