I am what some people might consider a late-bloomer in some regards: I did not buy my first designer item until last year (well, my first designer item that was not used or vintage). I always assumed I couldn't consider designer clothing, because I just couldn't afford it on a student budget! But now with designer sites like net-a-porter and online sample sale sites like Gilt Groupe, designer clothing has become more accessible (and sales are everywhere!). I also did not start buying "real" art until recently. I have come to discover that original art is actually easy to come by with some research -- sites like Etsy and Deviant Art cater to the art lover with an average income. I just purchased two limited-edition prints from 20x200 [A Jen Bekman Project], and I am feeling quite grown-up. Yes, I am officially an art collector! And here are the two lovely prints I received yesterday. Now, off to the store to buy picture frames...
by Carrie Marill
by Jennifer Sanchez
I want to encourage anyone who thought original art was unreachable, to reconsider and check out one of these amazing sites -- many of which offer art options well under $50:
20x200 -- They introduce two new pieces a week: one photo and one work on paper. Most images are available in three standard sizes. The smallest size is reprinted in the largest batch – an edition of 200 – and sold at the lowest price – $20. Hence the name 20x200.
Art for Empty Walls -- The pieces on this site are a bit more ($150 range), but you can buy actual paintings! Their mission is to provide a way for people to buy art – specifically those who might otherwise be intimidated or priced out of the art-buying process.
Artocracy -- Download free art or purchase inexpensive prints. This site has a wide selection, from abstract and digital art, to photography.
Deviant Art -- The largest art community in the world; particularly specializes in manga, cartoons, digital art, and alternative lifestyle photography. Hundreds of new art works are added daily.
Etsy -- The place where you can find it all!! Etsy features some of the most interesting independent artists on the web -- from crafts to paintings, prints and drawings.