Buying Art On A Budget

September 3, 2013

I’m not an art collector. But I want to be.

Here’s why:

  • My Job: Surrounding myself with original art nourishes my creativity, which is a No. 1 priority to be good at my job.
  • Support Artists: I want artists to keep making art, so it’s important for me to financially invest in a craft I want to see continued.
  • Stories: The story in the art plus the memory of buying the piece always brings a smile to my face.
  • Friends: I have artists who are friends and seeing their work on my wall makes me feel closer and more connected to them.
  • Imagination: Art is an adult manifestation of the surreal and magical. Who doesn’t need a little of that on a daily basis?

artist-15021-214-img_6108In the last few years, I’ve been working on shifting from an art appreciator to an art buyer (and I mean that in the most emerging sense possible). Let’s be real, art can be expensive and it can be hard to know where to find the right pieces to match your style. It takes time and patience to find pieces that are right for you AND the right price.

So if you’re like me and want to slowly start filling your walls with one-of-a-kind gems, but are on a budget, here’s three sources to get you started:

Buy Some Damn Art (

This has become my favorite online source for discovering emerging artists from around the globe. Kate Singleton, the founder and also blogger at Art Hound, works closely with some of the best up-and-coming artists to bring new, original art to the site every week. It’s a great online gallery experience. Did I mention it’s affordable? Most pieces are under $300.

The Soap Factory $99 Sale (

The $99 Sale is an aesthetic melée, a statement about the inherent value of art, and a fabulous fundraiser for The Soap Factory on Sept., 2013.

The 2013 $99 Sale will feature 150 works of art, all 8 inches by 10 inches and all signed only on the reverse! All proceeds support The Soap Factory, the region’s premier laboratory for emerging contemporary art.

MCAD Art Sale (

The MCAD Art Sale is a chance to buy one-of-a-kind art created by students and recent graduates at unbeatable prices.

Now in its 16th year, the sale is a Minnesota tradition that has generated more than $2 million for emerging artists. All proceeds go directly to the individual artists or to MCAD Art Sale Scholarship funds

This event has gained a tremendous reputation as the one of the nation’s top destinations for affordable, appreciable artwork by leading-edge artists who are creating not only what’s new, but what’s next.

At the end of the day:
I know to be good at my job I have to take the time to read and learn about new trends and things like changes in Facebook advertising. But I also need to take the time to feed my imagination, so that I can find moments of inspiration — and that’s not something you can read in a blog post or learn at a conference.

Here are two of my favorite pieces in my mini-collection:

Jay Dart (left), Jennifer Davis (right)

Jay Dart (left), Jennifer Davis (right)