The lovely Sarah Scholl Bowie is truly a work of art herself. She has filled her home with an abundant (and growing) collection of original art that is absolutely staggering, as you soon will discover as you look through these photographs of her collection (which, I'm sure, is just the tip of the iceberg). It's always fun to do an interview with an artist, but I have never done one with a collector - this will be my first and I'm thrilled that Sarah agreed.
When did you start collecting art and what inspired you to begin your collection?When I left my parents' house I "liberated" a few of my uncle's paintings - before he became the musical composer Harvey Schmidt, he was a commercial artist. I also had 2 paintings by a friend of Harvey's and then 5 years ago I made friends with the artist Leisa Shannon Corbett and realized I could afford art from someone OUTSIDE the family! An impulse purchase from a gallery in Golden 2 years ago led me to Carol Nelson's work and Daily Painters - the collection mushroomed from there.
What do you think your collection says about you?It certainly shows my love for color and pattern, but there are also strong subject themes - women are probably the most prevalent theme (I'm a motherless daughter), minimalist landscapes, art-within-art. I love hanging paintings in color or theme groups, and that shows one of the quirks of my brain - a relentless search for patterns in everything.
What is your art buying experience like - do you go into it with something in mind or do you discover new art/artists organically?
It's a combination of both, and the internet makes that so easy. Yes, I have been known to search on Etsy for something like "orange sun" or "green nude."
What are your turn-offs when shopping for art - aka, what would make you not buy when you otherwise would?
Do you look for art that is ready to hang or are you open to art that will need framing to be hung? When it comes to canvases, do you prefer the sides of the canvas to be painted?I definitely prefer ready-to-hang art because that frees up more money to buy more paintings! I prefer the canvas sides to be painted although I do have many hanging in my house with the edges still white and I've gotten used to that look.
When it comes to shipping, do you have a certain expectation about the package you will receive or does the packaging not matter to you (as long as it gets there safely, that is)?I am always impressed by the care that artists take when shipping their work. But when they use so much tape that cutting into the box feels like I'm doing a C-section, I get frustrated. A lot of my purchases are shipped to my office and my manager has complained the cutting and ripping of boxes is too noisy in our open cube environment. (So now I drag the boxes into a meeting room to unpack them, LOL.)
You purchased one of my paintings on Etsy. Is Etsy the only place you buy art online or are there other sites you frequent?
Etsy has become my primary site because of the great range of prices, but I have bought many paintings from Daily Painters. I've also bought from Daily Painter Originals, artist websites and eBay.
Is there something we, as artists, could do/say/show to make our art more appealing to buyers?
I think you and hundreds of other artists I follow are doing a fantastic job. I can hardly resist you on any given day. I can't imagine how you could make yourselves MORE appealing!
Finally, what are your hopes for the future as a collector?
I hope I can slow down my rate of collecting so that it doesn't feel so compulsive. I would also love it if my collecting inspires other people to buy original art - that's part of why I show so many paintings on Facebook. I also hope my collection stays safe for many years - there's a burned-out house in our neighborhood and every time I drive by it, I shudder!
Many thanks to Sarah for a wonderful interview and peak into her art-filled home! Visit Sarah's blog at http://sarahbowie.blogspot.com/.