Art Is More Than Just An Accessory

Love at first sight is a powerful experience. Sometimes it lasts, sometimes it doesn’t and only time will tell. The best plan is to let the romance settle and not to rush into anything.

The same principle applies when you’re buying a painting, at least according to an art collector that I met at a gallery opening a few weeks ago. “I would never buy a painting on impulse,” he said. “The painting that first catches your eye can be one that you’ll tire of very quickly. The good ones keep coming back into your mind, niggling at you like a stone in your shoe. They won’t let you go. Those are the paintings that will hold your interest over time.”

So first, you find your heart’s desire and then you walk away from it. But what if someone else buys it in the meantime? The art collector shrugged. “It happens. You just have to let it go. There are other paintings.”


The crux of the matter is that buying a painting takes a bit of confidence. It’s an important decision, not just aesthetically, but also financially. An original painting is a relatively expensive purchase. “When people haven’t bought art before, they can be very insecure about it,” says Summer Obaid of the online gallery, Fine Art Seen.

The artworks that they sell are painted by artists across the world and mostly come as ready-to-hang canvases stretched on wooden frames. They generally don’t require further framing. Prices range from €100 to around €5,000, but most of her customers pay between €300 and €700 for an original painting. “You’d pay that for a sofa, but that’s a purchase that most people would take fairly seriously too,” she says.

If your budget is less than €100, you’d be better going for a limited edition print and there’s a damn fine collection at Dublin’s North Brunswick Street Studio, Damn Fine Print.

As well as providing an investment, paintings and wall-mounted art can lift the look of your home immeasurably and provide interest on every wall, be it in pride of place over the fireplace in the living room or as some light whimsy on the wall of a downstairs wc. A walk around a gallery outlet that sells the sort of thing you like has been the traditional route of purchasers in search of local artists, but online opens up the world.

Buying art online is not for everyone, but it has some big advantages. The price of a painting from Fine Art Seen includes delivery to anywhere on the globe and if you don’t like it, you can send it back within two weeks at no extra cost. Just don’t throw out the packaging until you’re certain you want to keep it.

Artfinder, an online gallery that offers an equivalent service, has similar terms of business and an emphasis on original paintings that sell for less than £500 (€576). Both galleries are UK based, but represent artists from many countries, including Ireland. Online-only galleries seem like a good deal for artists too. Fine Art Seen charges a commission of 30pc, which is much less than most physical galleries and seems typical within the online-gallery business.

But how do you choose a painting you haven’t actually seen? Fine Art Seen offers an advisory service, based on an online questionnaire which helps you to define your taste in very simple terms. Do you like abstract art or landscapes? What is your budget? What size of painting are you looking for? What room do you plan to put it in?

(Shared from

Selling Your Art Online

Do you appreciate art? Or maybe you’ve made the decision to start selling your art online. Congrats! But where to begin? Head on over to Google and punch in the search term “online art gallery.” You think this will be a good place to start, but now have the misfortune of sifting through 363,000,000 search results in the hopes of finding an online gallery that meets your needs. By our last count here at TAA, there are over 300 websites that specifically sell original art online.

Things are obviously boomin’ in the online art world. New (and younger) buyers are emerging as viable art collectors for the first time in years as prices and options such as limited edition prints are becoming more readily available. It’s a trend that’s been particularly driven by the sheer volume of online art websites that include the ubiquitous Etsy but now also encompasses world-renowned leaders like Saatchi and Christie’s.

We recently chatted with Jonas Almgren (CEO at, Nicolas Sarazin (CEO at, and Alex Farkas (Gallery Director and Co-Founder of to learn more about how they operate. You’ll find some helpful and exclusive advice from them below.


The commission structure is determined by four main factors:

  • the level of service
  • the amount of curation
  • the reputation
  • the roster of clients of the gallery.

For uncurated open marketplace sites (think Etsy), the company is relatively hands-off, charging a low commission or a small listing fee. The marketplace sites are often crowded and an artist’s work can often get lost. In this case, the artist will need to market their portfolio to generate sales and fulfill the orders themselves. Frankly, it’s a good idea for artists to do this no matter which sites they’re on.

According to Alex at UGallery, for premier curated online art galleries, their role is the same as a brick and mortar gallery. They will help prepare your work, which includes setting prices, posting photos, and writing descriptions of the work and a biography about the artist. They will merchandise the art on the site, adding it to collections and featuring it where possible. If the gallery is curated, they will ensure your work is unique relative to the other artists it represents. They will also advertise on your behalf so your work has visibility to a growing set of clients.

A site like Artfinder sets their commission at 30-percent, enabling them to promote their artists online and offline; recruit new potential buyers (they have 350,000 members); give special promotions like free shipping weekends; and offer free returns at no cost to the artists. On the other hand, a site like Artmajeur only charges a nominal commission on free accounts, but cancels this out when an artist pays for a monthly subscription. How much a site pays out to an artist truly varies from one end of the spectrum such as 20-percent (DeviantArt) or 30-percent (ArtRising) to 100-percent on a site like Artplode because they charge no commission.

At the end of the day, Alex at UGallery told us, “The key question to ask is how much you want to do yourself versus outsource to a gallery in terms of merchandising, marketing, and fulfillment. If you’re unsure, my recommendation is to try two or three websites and see which channel is the most profitable for you.”


Wading through the volume of online galleries can get overwhelming, so how do you figure out which ones are worth your time and money? Based on our conversations with the founders of these three sites, they recommended that artists look at factors like longevity (how long has the site been around?), membership size, and artist reviews to help in the decision making process.

Jonas/Artfinder: I would look at for how long the gallery has been around; how many users/members the gallery has; and customer reviews. For example, in the past six months, Artfinder has received over 2,500 reviews of which 94 give the artist and Artfinder top marks for order experience. Those kinds of results speak well for a quality site. I would also check in with artists selling through the gallery to see what their experience is as sellers. We offer an artist forum that allows artists to share their experiences and tips.

Alex/UGallery: There are a few sources to check out when researching online galleries.

  1. First, do a Google search for some common keywords – online art gallery, buy art online, etc. – and see if the gallery advertises or appears in the search results. Clients are Googling these same things, so you want to make sure you’re represented by a gallery established enough to appear in a client’s research.
  2. Second, look through lists of the best online art galleries such as Apartment Therapy’s list or Emily Henderson’s list. TAA Note: You can sign up for our Members-Only Resources to get a full list of all online art galleries with information on search rankings, approximate traffic, and other site stats.
  3. Third, browse the gallery’s website. Often you can tell a lot just by looking through the site. See if the art looks high quality and is merchandised well, and what the shopping experience for a client would be like. Also, see how often they update their inventory or their blog – you want to find an online art gallery that is active and up-to-date. Lastly, browse the gallery’s press page to see if they have earned notable press in the past few months.

Source: Abundant Artist

My Review On Two Best Pots and Pans To Choose From

I have been using my mom’s old cookware set for quite some time now. It gets the job done even though it is over a decade old now. And if you ask me, I was doing fine with it. Well, that’s until I paid a good friend of mine a visit and saw her cooking set. I wasn’t envious but it was certainly a lot better looking and fancier compared to the junk I set I had. So I went on a hunt to find a new set of cookware.

The mission, however, proved to be more frustrating than adventurous. Who knew that looking for cooking sets could be so overwhelming? I did read a whole lot of pot and pan reviews from a around the net. Surprisingly in the middle of my frantic search, there was a moment of enlightenment. I found two distinct that intrigued me the most.

Cook N Home set

You can opt for a 15-piece or 2-piece set, depending on your preference. This is the best option for people with a tight budget. Going for less than $50, this cooking set can take your cooking experience to a whole new level. The 15-piece set includes nylon tools, a 1-quart sauce pan, 3- quart casserole, 5- quart dutch oven, 2- quart sauce pan, 10-inch fry pan and 8-inch fry pan.

It has soft touch handles that remains cool while cooking. The pans are made from heavy aluminium material which ensures even heat distribution. It is also easy to clean. When using this cooking set, you have to be careful since the utensils are not heat resistant. You need to cook over low to medium heat. Too much heat can cause your pans to warp.

T-Fal Cookware Set

If you are not working on a tight budget then this is the cooking set for you. The 12-piece T-Fall set includes a dutch oven, sauce pans and sauté pans with lids. It also comes with a solid spoon and a slotted spatula.

This cooking set has a thermo-spot heat indicator. The indicator enables you to know if the pan is optimally preheated before you start cooking. Its non-stick interior is durable and resistant to scratches. One of the things that made this set to stand out is its anti-warp base which prevents warping and promotes even distribution of heat. The T-Fal does not have stay-cool handles, thus you need to be careful during preparing of meals. It is hard to find a good cooking set that is both durable and budget-friendly. But, if you are looking for the best cookware sets, then I highly recommend you to go for the Cook N Home set or T-Fal set.

I haven’t picked either coz I’m just too broke at the moment. So maybe I’ll save up for it. I mean I hope I will. Unless the ceiling breaks again and I have to spend more to get that fixed. Life is such a pain in the AS$.

Update : A Year After

Exceptional results require good quality tools, and it is no different in the kitchen. The choice of cookware being used can make or spoil any dish. It is, therefore, recommended that you have the best cookware set to enhance your cooking. Inexpensive cookware sets may sound like a good bargain only to be deformed by heat or through rough usage. The good news is that there are economical and durable cookware sets in the market, which can provide professional results like the high-end products.

I Chose The T-fal Cookware

The T-fal 12-piece cookware set is my preferred model when it comes to cooking. It is made of hard anodized scratch resistant titanium and has non stick properties. Moreover, the cookware set comes equipped with a thermo-spot heat indicator, silicone handle, and an anti-warp base making cooking easier and more enjoyable. The T-fal 12-piece is also safe to use with the oven and dishwasher.

My Sister’s Wedding Gift

I would also recommend using the Cook N Home 15-piece cookware set. It has tempered glass cover lid that helps with an easy view as the food cooks. It is made with nonstick aluminum which enhances even heat distribution. Finally, it has soft touch silicone handles that make it simpler to hold the cookware while cooking.

The Best Semi-automatic Espresso Machine Ever Used

Semi-automatic espresso machines are easy to come by

Their list of brands and price range make them preferable for many. They even enable you the right amount of control over your drink. Things like flavor and even temperature are easily controlled by the user. Some machines even take it a step
further to offer a grinder attachment and a frother. The frother enables users to be able to create drinks
such as cappuccinos and lattes giving you more bang for your buck.

When purchasing a semi-automatic espresso machine go the cheaper route and checkout here for the Best espresso machines under 300 on bisuzscoffee. These machines, though not always pleasing to the eye, provide you with same quality espresso as models ranging in the high thousands.

Steps to follow when brewing with a semi-automatic espresso machine

 Ensure there is water in your machine. Turn the power switch and wait for your machine to

warm up. This process typically takes a few minutes.

 Insert your choice of coffee. Whether that be beans, premade grounds or ESE pods. Depending

on the type of espresso machine you have this will determine your choice.

 Place your coffee cup under the brewer and flip the brewing switch.

 Once your coffee is made to your desired amount you can then turn off the machine.

What to consider when using a semi-automatic espresso machine

 Ease of use. These machines, even the more technical ones, are a simple push of a button type


 They create the thickest and creamiest espresso out of all other types of espresso machines.

 Price range is vast. Models can be as expensive as $1,000.00 USD to $100.00 USD, Your budget is

always important.


Breville Barista Express Coffee Espresso Machine

This is probably one of the best semi-automatic espresso machines on the market. It is a powerful machine with a 1,600-watt thermal coil heating system. At a price point of $579.95, it offers exception value for its price. This machine offers enough manual and automatic controls to make you feel like a barista in your own home.

It’s designed with a stainless steel body a hefty steel port a filter and handle that gives it the impression of luxury. The attachable grinder enables you the opportunity to place coffee beans straight into the machine. Gauge how coarse or fine you would like your beans and it is then dumped right into your removable port a filter ready to be brewed to perfection.

As mentioned before a machine that is versatile enough to create other drinks such as lattes and cappuccinos are preferred and the machine does exactly that with ease. The Mr. Coffee brand though cheaper and similar functionalities cannot compare to the speed and production of this machine. Even creating other drinks are easier and faster and while the Mr. Coffee can only runs at a few minutes at a time this machine can almost run indefinitely.