Here are some More Tips for Collecting Art.  These are included in my second book, "The Art of Everyday Joe: A Collector's Journal."

1.  SUPPORT BFA/MFA PROGRAMS:  Visit Bachelor of Fine Arts and Masters of Fine Arts Program exhibitions at your local college or university art gallery.  Join their mailing list.  Art students are bound for galleries catering to emerging art.

2.  EDUCATION:  Ask artists about their formal education.  While I enjoy and collect some folk art (innocent or primitive looking art produced by artists with no formal training), it's great to invest in artists who have formal art education.  Formally trained artists aren't always necessarily better, but training is perhaps one indication of commitment and hopefully longevity.  While future value isn't my primary motivation for purchasing art, it remains a consideration and if an artist is in it for the long haul, perhaps his/her work will increase in value ... nothing wrong with that.

3.  UNUSUAL PLACES: Seek out art in unusual places.  Don't just rely on the usual suspects like galleries, fairs or online galleries.  Seek out art in places like restaurants, bookstores, government buildings or even hospitals.  If we buy art in these venues, it'll encourage future exhibitions, which in turn support emerging artists.  

4.  SEEK OTHER COLLECTORS:  I must admit that I don't know a lot of other art collectors, but I have met a few.  So far, these experiences have been great.  If other collectors are friendly and non-competitive, you'll have a true feeling of shared appreciation and perhaps friendship.  Ultimately, art is about human relations and connection.  What better way to achieve this than by connecting with those with a shared interest?  It’s an opportunity to learn.

5.  CHECK NEXT DOOR:  Artists aren't "pod people" or society dropouts.  They're everywhere ... they’re possibly your next-door neighbor.  Galleries and art shows are great, but again, don't rely on them as your sole source for art.  There's nothing better than visiting an artist in his/her studio ... especially if it's next door!

6.  BUY DEEP:  Maine artist Merv Slotnick gave me this tip.  You can create a stronger, more interesting collection by buying more than one example of an artist's work.  It gives your collection depth.  I currently own more than 54 of Merv Slotnick's abstract works on paper.  They rock.  Merv is no fool.  He knows I love his work and will buy it.  Still, I own numerous pieces from various artists.  As I collect their work, I feel that I'm growing with them, but as a collector.  It's fun.

7.  TRAVEL:  I cannot stress this enough.  Travel is perhaps the best way to get a true education in this world and it doesn't have to cost a lot of money.  Just go!  Take a bus, train, drive or fly, if you can.  Get some culture!  Meet people!  Don't be afraid to make an ass of yourself.  It's the only real way to grow.  Grow as a person and you'll grow as a collector.  Experiences make the best collectables, anyway.  When you’re feeling peer pressure, tell convention to take a hike!  Live your life.  Be free.

I’m saying all these things to you, but I’m really saying them to myself.  After all, this IS a journal!  Hopefully there's something here you can use.  Again, good luck!


10 Reasons To Visit Art Galleries