How To Commission Artwork

How To Commission Artwork

I’m in the middle of having a piece of artwork commissioned for above a fireplace right now, and I thought I’d share the process with you all. It doesn’t have to be complicated, but there are certainly some things to know that will make the process easy. Let’s dive into how to commission artwork!

I’m a firm believer in having original artwork. I know it can be expensive, but try to think of it as an investment. We had a piece commissioned for our first home, and it continues to hang on the walls in our current home. Getting a piece that you love will ensure that you’ll keep it for a lifetime.

Start by assessing your needs, and thinking about what colors, size and style you’d like. If you are not sure skip right ahead to finding an artist. Before you can contact an artist or gallery, you’ll want to do some research on the artwork and artists you love. Find artists by heading to your local galleries. You can also find them on social media! If you have an art school nearby, you might even contact the professors to see if there is a talented student that would like to make some money.

You’ve Found Your Artist…Now What?

Once you have an artist selected, reach out to them! Whether that is through social media, email or a gallery. A lot of times, artists contract with a gallery who helps them find new clients. The gallery will become your go between. This is an easy option, as it gives a buffer between you and the artist. You may feel like you don’t want to offend the artist in giving direction, and the gallery can help guide you through the process. Just remember, they want you to love the piece!

Talk to the artist about the colors. I find it to be helpful to have color swatches of fabric, previous artwork, or wall colors available for the artist to go in the right direction. Before they begin the piece you also need to discuss price. Some artists or galleries require a deposit. Lastly, make sure you talk to the artist about the movement and energy you want your guests (and yourself!) to feel when viewing the artwork. Give the artist some time to present a draft, and then go from there. You might find that things need to be refined. Occasionally this process can go back and forth a few times. In the end, you will have the most beautiful artwork to hang around your home!

Jess Cathell

Jess Cathell is an Atlanta based lifestyle and interior creator, designer, and tastemaker. With years of experience in home decor and a portfolio ranging from farm house to the beach, Jess is known for creating balanced spaces with notes of the unexpected. Inspired by the fusion of traditional elements with bold contemporary design, she has developed a clear transitional style. Her most recent work can be found in the Atlanta Magazine as a tribute to the modern home work space. She has collaborated with brands such as Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, and is continually looking to connect with local and sustainable sources.

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