My love for horse paintings began when my Thoroughbred prospect, Lizard, was used as a model for an art tutorial by celebrated equestrian artist Lesley Humphrey. Lizard and I eventually parted ways (he just never had enough ‘insanity in the middle’ but is now happily competing in H/J) but I still have the original painting.
Then for my birthday this year my husband bought me this adorable watercolor from Etsy seller ArtEnchantedWoods. It’s painted on a page from ‘Black Beauty’ which makes it all the more special for a book lover like me.
Here are a few tips for starting your own collection.
1) Take your time and do your homework. I gravitate towards Etsy, because it has been in business since 2005 and is linked with Paypal for easy purchases, but there are several more reputable websites. Look at seller reviews and always ask a question. Art can be as cheap or expensive as you want it to be, so research similar works and don’t be afraid to negotiate with a seller.
From the same series as my birthday gift, artist Julie Raven has created “Nosey Horse III” for $38. Each ‘Nosey Horse’ is completely original, meaning there’s only one available…ever.
Rachelsstudio has this amazingly detailed “Covering Ground” watercolor listed for $263. This seller does offer payment plans for anything over $100.
On the more expensive end of the price spectrum, JCStilesArt has this beautiful oil painting, titled ‘Horses Logging in the Mountain,’ listed for $580. There’s something about the way the artist painted the horses with such kind eyes and that beautiful sky that make me love this one.
2) Look for sales!
FurnARTureDesign has this lovely “Andalusion The Spaniard Royalty” acrylic painting listed for $125. The painting is framed and all original, signed by the artist.
AmyLynBihrle’s “Mustang Series,” created using both watercolor and gouache, occasionally drop under $100. I love the simplicity of these paintings. The white background will make them pop in any room.
3) Buy what you like and plan on keeping it. Occasionally art can be seen as a potential investment, but even the most expensive pieces should be thought of as part of your estate rather than something that can be flipped for a profit. Figure out what styles you like and then if you don’t love a piece, don’t buy it.
and there’s a whole lot in between.
Don’t be afraid of different mediums either, such as this beautiful pencil drawing…
4) Be very careful of the term ‘reproductions.’ Reproductions are not original works of art, they are copies, which is fine so long as you know what you are purchasing. On a side, I recommend prints for any room with high humidity or dust. Original paintings are delicate. Most artists can create low cost prints of their original works.
For example this 12×12 horse art print says there is “Only 1 available” and will set you back $35. The ad has the word ‘print’ and ‘reproduction’ in the title, but not all sellers are so upfront.
Like this one titled “Horsing Around.” It is ‘signed by the artist’ and has ‘watercolor’ and ‘painting’ in the ad title. Only when you scroll down and read the details will you see, “MEDIA: fine art print (the original was painted in watercolors).”
5) Don’t be too much of a hipster. Nothing is worse than realizing a year later that you have no connection to that brightly colored, abstract horse painting other than you thought it would match your drapes. Stay away from trends and instead go with what your gut tells you is beautiful.
What does this “Weird Horse Face” folk art mean? I have no idea because, honestly, it kind of scares me.
6) If all else fails, find an artist for a custom pet portrait because we all know that your horse is the most beautiful horse on the planet. 😉
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