Let’s talk displays! However you choose to display your poured art is totally up to you, as it should be, after all it’s your home, office, studio, exhibit, etc. After someone purchases your art, what they do is up to them as well. For example, I had a piece on my wall at home—it was seen by a friend who asked if I could do one just like it for her. Telling her of course I could pour one for her, I also explained that no two pours would be exact. Seeing how much she really liked the one I had, I took it down and gave it to her.
She seemed so happy and said she knew exactly where she wanted it to go. Later that night, she sent me a picture of where she had placed it. It was the perfect placement for color, size of space, and even the grouping. What made me uncomfortable was the way she hung it—not paying attention to the way it was poured to make them flow together. In my vision of the pair.
No this is not her picture she sent me, but it is how she oriented the two pieces. Of course, it wasn’t upside down to her—but to me it just wasn’t as special hanging the way she had it. She loved it that way and in the end that’s all that mattered as it was hers now.
Here’s a few reasons why I feel, whether you are just starting out or are lucky enough to have folks who love your art, how you display your art should matter to you.
When to Display Your Art
Hanging your poured paintings lets others know how you feel about your own art. Are they in prominent places in your home where anyone who enters will see them, or are they only in your pouring safe space. When I first started out I kept a few of my paintings up in my own pouring space, but did not display them anywhere else until about a year after. I tend to be overly critical of anything I create, so it was much longer before I felt comfortable selling my art. Take it from me, the ultimate procrastinator and overly self critical artist, don’t hide your awesomeness in a box or on a shelf. When you are proud of a pour, please display it, give as a gift, or sell it. Just share it somehow.
Displaying in your home or work place can be either very personal or thought of as an extended exhibit for your art.
Where You Display Your Art
Orienting your poured piece can be very personal to each artist. Afterall, you understand the nuances of the poured piece and have played with it from all angles. Meaning, you have turned it upside down and flipped it side to side to find the perfect orientation. Basically, before you hang that beautiful creation, you have rotated it in all four directions. By the way, if you aren’t already doing this, you may have missed out on hidden surprises in almost every piece.
Groupings at home or in the office can enhance or distract from your artwork.
In your own home, it doesn’t matter where or how you display pieces as you only need to make yourself happy. While this is true, if you ever have guests, friends or family to your home, they might turn into a potential client. Not everyone who enters your home may hit you up for a free painting, some may be more than happy to pay.
If you feel there is even a chance of someone being interested, then arrange your pieces in your home like you would as an exhibit. Make sure you have a piece in all main rooms of the home—so there is something to see in every room.
This is your home, if you have bright vibrant colors everywhere, and you have one wall with 30 vibrant paintings—be creative, be you. If your home is more subtle and you have a wall with 30 vibrant paintings, and nothing else seems to blend with your wall of creations, you might want to consider smaller groupings or intermix the bold with the subtle in other areas to make the entire room more cohesive.
In the workplace there are a few things to consider: do you own the business, do you have your own office. Do you sit in a cubicle or at a desk in the middle of a large open office. Also, are your paintings just for you, or would you like to actually sell a few?
If you own the business or company, and would like to also have interested art customers, then put them up in groupings around the office with your card inserted so they know who to talk to if interested.
If you have your own office, with permission of your boss of course; add a grouping or two on the walls. No need to add your card, if there is interest the individual will say something directly to you.
Display in Small Places
If you sit in a cubicle, your boss will likely only allow you to have one or two small items on your desk. I wonder about the cubicle walls? Every time I’ve worked somewhere I had those ugly fake walls around my desk, some of them get taken up with the appropriate graphs, charts, lists that are related to my work. There are always areas on those ugly grey or brown upholstered walls to add something, even if only a 12×12 inch space that’s open. Use it as a display!
Put up a new piece every month that fits perfectly there, someone will ask, I guarantee. If they like it, they will spread the word around the office and others will come to see your work for themselves.
What if you don’t have any room, your employer will not allow anything on the cubicle walls, or you don’t have walls as you sit in one large room with other all day long. Do you still have a dedicated work space, one that is considered yours and only yours? Hopefully you can have something on the desk itself. Maybe have a small, non-obtrusive easel and proudly change out a fresh pour each month. Again, co-workers or customers, whomever walks by will see it, and some will ask.
Another idea is the electronic photo album. Instead of photos of your family, pets, vacations, etc. you could use it to showcase with a running album of your art. You can also intermix your paintings with family and such so that you have the best of both worlds, all your babies, so to say, in one place.
Take The Exhibit With You
We have talked about displaying in offices and cubicles. What about those who are not working or who may travel for work? Duh, electronic baby! Your phone, tablet, and computers are the perfect way to showcase your creations. No, I’m not talking about websites, Facebook, blogs, etc. I’m talking about the basics.
Your computer sitting on a desk, your laptop which can go anywhere is a permanent advertisement if you use it right. What is the first thing you see after you turn on the computer or laptop and everything is loaded? The background photo, that one place where you can load any picture you want, and anyone walking by can see it. You can of course have a picture gallery loaded so you can easily bring them up as well.
Tablets and cell phones are great, too. Think about this you have a lock screen—picture, a home screen picture, and again you can create picture galleries on your mobile devices. I have both an Android tablet and cellphone, and both work the same way.
Under gallery, I can create as many photo albums a I want. I have one for family, friends, and one for studio and a separate one named Show. When someone wants to see my best work, I bring up the show album and they can immediately see what I’m capable of. No one wants to sit there while you try to find a good picture to show them; and if they hold your phone, they might instinctually start to swipe through pictures. You don’t typically want them to see the worst pours, or private photos of your family. A separate album with your best creations is your best foot forward, plus it makes you come across as a more professional artist.
Whether you hang them on the wall, display on your desk or go completely electronic, the world needs more beauty, and we know just where to find it. From that first pour that makes you giddy to the last that makes you proud, feel free to share those amazing creations everywhere.
Since she began creating art in 2007, Tina Swearingen’s focus has evolved from repurposed conceptual art into the creativity and flow of acrylic pouring. Her pours are inspired by the movement and colors of Southern Arizona’s amazing thunderstorms, and the majestic beauty of the Pacific Northwest, which she now calls home.