Some artists gift their art often, but I must admit I am not one of them.
I am definitely open to that changing, but for now, if you've received a piece of my artwork from me, you are among the few...
When I really unpack the why behind not gifting my art, it comes down to several things:
First off, art is such a personal thing. No two people will have the same taste in art and what you put on your walls should make you happy. I would never want to assume that my art is what someone else enjoys enough to be in their home, and would never want someone to feel obliged to have something on their wall just in case I came over.
Secondly, art is valuable, if I wasn't planning on getting you a $100+ gift, I will not likely gift you a piece of art that is worth that much. If I'm going to pour my heart and soul into a piece of art for you, I need to know that you will love and appreciate it.
However, I've gotten around these challenges in a few ways. If I want to gift someone a piece of art, particularly as a thank you for something meaningful they've done for me or to mark a special occasion (or if someone needs some cheering up), I will gift them a commission. That way they can choose a subject matter that is meaningful to them and we can design the piece together. I will also allow them to choose what medium they would like it done in. Some folks are more drawn to my mixed media pieces while other really love my watercolour illustrations. Again, art is so personal.
If I want the piece to be a surprise, I will try to choose an image that I know is meaningful to the recipient (sometimes this means asking permission from a relative to use the image).
My tune on this is starting to change a bit over the past few months, after all, I have more inventory than ever because I make art full-time now, and also we are tightening our purse strings as I delve into this new business, and I can make something meaningful and amazing for the cost of the art supplies. And I guess to be fair, I've never had anything but complete gratitude and joy when I have gifted someone a piece of my art, so there's that...
What are your thoughts on gifting or receiving art?