Thing 9: Prints!

Prints! Yesterday, we discussed how functional ceramics, like mugs and bowls, are a great entry point into buying local art. And as promised, we’re continuing on to things for your walls! I am here to champion prints. “Prints you say? Like copies?” Well, no. Today I am talking about original works of art made by printmakers, not reproductions, which can be made by artists of any media. 

If you’re very new to this, you can read a little bit more about printmaking in an explainer from the Met. But I promise you already know famous printmaking, such as Hokusai’s Great Wave or Warhol’s silkscreens. There is an incredibly huge range in printmaking, with dozens of techniques and countless methods. But due to the nature of how many printmakers work, looking at artists working in this media can be a great way to purchase affordable, original art. 

Similar to how I discussed finding ceramists yesterday, you can search for printmakers and printmaking cooperatives in your area online and on Instagram. Because many types of printmaking require large, expensive presses, it’s common to find groups of artists sharing studios or working out of ateliers/cooperative spaces. This is great from a collector and consumer standpoint, as it can enable you to discover the work of more than one artist at a time. And if you see artwork you like, but it isn’t *quite* the right fit, don’t hesitate to contact the artist directly and see if they have additional pieces for sale. 

Elizabeth in the UK received a monoprint (the image pictured here) from Underway Studio today. This was a fun adventure for me because I got to go on a hunt to find a new local(ish)-to-her artist! If you’re in DC, some of my favorite places to purchase prints are Pyramid Atlantic, Washington Printmakers, Washington Print Club, Victory Dance Creative, and Printmakers Inc., but I am constantly finding new work and new artists to love.

And you should keep track of the artists you like! Following artists on Instagram (or signing up for their mailing list) lets you know where to see additional pieces, keeps you up to date with what they’re making, and can even provide exclusive access or discounts on certain pieces.  Don’t forget that art can make excellent gifts too!







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