5 Steps to Building a “ Real” Art Collection

[written by Joan Philip]

A recent letter to a major home decorating magazine noted that the writer had managed to successfully renovate her home and put in place many of the big decorating elements like paint and furniture, but was completely stumped as to what to put on the walls. She asked how to approach building an art collection — where to go, how to chose, what to spend.

Many people are overwhelmed by this. Having lived with mass produced poster art, often held over from student days, they are ready to move on to enjoying art that is one-of-a-kind and speaks to their heart.

So how do you start?

1. Look and Learn
Get out and see as much art as you can. Go to galleries, museums and art shows. One of the best ways to educate yourself about art and what you like is to go to local art shows and talk to the makers of the art on display. Virtually all major centers have them. For example, Toronto’s Don Valley Art Club (www.donvalleyartclub.com) holds two major ten-day shows each year where a wide array of original art is for sale at very affordable prices, and visitors can meet and talk to the artists.

2. Have a Theme
Having an idea of the kind of art that appeals to you will help you make decisions about which piece best suits your needs, and reflects your personality and interests. Look at art that tells your story and reflects your dreams. You can stick with one style of art, such as landscapes or abstract, or you can mix it up. But your collection should reflect you.

3. Start Small
Sometimes it is easier to appreciate all the elements in a painting that appeal to you when the picture is of smaller dimension. These paintings are often more affordable as well, and easier to fit into your home.

4. Have a Budget
As you spend time looking and learning, you will get a much better idea of the costs associated with the art and the artists that appeal to you. Decide what you can afford. There is a wide range of pricing in the art world, but buying local, directly from the artists will offer you not only the chance to acquire art that you love, but to stay within a smaller budget while supporting the artists in your midst.

5. Feel the Love
Art is not an asset, like stocks and bonds. Art tells a story, touches your heart, makes you think. It comes from the mind and heart of the artist into your life and becomes something new. Take your time. Enjoy the process.

Posted in Art Musings

Friday Night with Dave Rheaume – Smoke and Mirrors: Special Effects Painting

{submitted by Brent Arlitt}

The Club was fortunate to have David Rheaume demonstrate his unique painting style to members on Friday Feb 3. David has been specializing in creating Cityscapes inspired by early 20th century scenes. His technique frequently utilizes thin washes from a minimal palette of acrylic paint to create a mesmerizing dreamy effect that pulls observers into his 3D scenes.

David also showed how he creates scenes and how the light effects that he demonstrates develops into paintings with depth and interest.



Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Friday Night with Tim Packer

“It’s all about the work” — What it takes to build a successful art career with Tim Packer.

{submitted by Sylvia Le Roy}

It was a pleasure to spend a few hours with Tim Packer, renowned, internationally recognized, professional artist from Whitby, Ontario.

If it weren’t for our 10:00pm deadline we would have been there until the wee hours of the morning.

Tim gave a candid talk about his rise to success as an artist; he spoke of his victories and his failures. The insight he provided about the amount of work it takes to promote his art made our heads spin. With the help of his son, he has embraced the realm of social media and manufactures his own giclee prints.  He has reduced his reliance on galleries to display his art and is now exhibiting in just three galleries (down from twelve).”Why pay a gallery 50% of your revenue when you can do it yourself?” was a question Tim asked himself and he now enjoys an income of up to $250,000/yr.

Although Tim started and gained notoriety as a portrait artist in watercolour, he switched to oil after learning the market, generally, does not collect art in that media. He stresses that the first decision is to determine how to approach your art: is it a hobby? or is it a career? He stresses that “One must produce great work with a unique voice”. One must have technical ability as well as creativity, experience AND passion. When people have suggested he was born with a gift his response is “My gift is my passion”.

Tim’s journey has been one of pushing himself beyond his comfort zone, suggesting there are two modes in creating art.  The first is the Product mode where your painting turns out as expected and you remain in your comfort zone. The second is the Process mode where you don’t worry about the outcome; your goal is to try new things and enjoy the process.

Tim’s “unique style draws on the deep traditions of Canadian landscape painting while interpreting the world through a modern eye”. Tim has succeeded in “creating great work with a unique voice”.



Tim shared some individuals and publications who have both mentored and inspired him:

Zoltan Szabo: http://www.zoltanszabo.com/

Neville Clarke: http://rogallery.com/Clarke_Neville/ClarkeNeville-showroom.html

Lewis Lehrman – “Becoming a Successful Artist”: https://www.amazon.ca/Becoming-Successful-Artist-Lewis-Lehrman/dp/0891347429

Gary Vaynerchuck – “Jab Jab Jab Right Hook: How to tell your story in a noisy social world”: https://www.amazon.ca/Jab-Right-Hook-Story-Social/dp/006227306X

Frank Webb – “Strengthening Your Paintings With Dynamic Composition”: https://www.amazon.ca/Strengthen-Your-Paintings-Dynamic-Composition/dp/1626540403


To further appreciate Tim’s accomplishments and learn from his experience, you may check out his internet pages:

Tim Packer Fine Art: http://www.timpacker.com/

Tim Packer YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_IjiNiYrPgpixEE6IOmVqQ

Tim Packer Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/timpackerfinearts/?hc_ref=NEWSFEED

Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Friday Night with Hi-Sook Barker

{Submitted by Ingrid Mueller}

On January 20, the Friday night guest was painter Hi-Sook Barker who demonstrated a winter street scene in watercolour.

Hi-Sook reminded us all that the fundamentals are important in everything you create.  She stressed that we MUST hone our drawing skills in order to paint with confidence. Hi-Sook suggested that instead of using grids with photo references, just use marks in the margins and SEE where everything else falls into place.  She stressed that an artist must focus and not talk while painting and to really know your tools i.e. brushes, and the results that each will achieve.  Hi-Sook used just three colours and demonstrated that one must understand colour theory and how and where to apply lights and darks.

Posted in Friday Night Speaker

Holiday Party 2016

On Friday, December 9 members and friends of DVAC enjoyed an amazing evening at Fantasy Farm. The evening included great food, wonderful prizes, music and dancing.

Posted in DVAC Event