Is My Painting Worth Anything – This guide will help you determine the value of your painting and give you the language you need to sell it if you really have something of value.
Search online and you will find thousands of people who have “authentic” Picasso or Dali paintings. You’ll also see thousands of people appraising these items online only to find out they’re a modern reprint (I did this once with a French artist and wasted my money and then got embarrassed in front of my grandmother. She was a big art collector…and that’s the inspiration for this post). So let’s start with the absolute basics, is your painting a real painting?
Is My Painting Worth Anything
This may seem like a stupid question, but there are master producers who have perfected the art of copying paintings and sending them out for mass production, so it’s worth taking a moment to think about whether a painting identifies a painting or a print. .
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The first thing you need to do is look at the painting up close… I’m not talking from a few feet away, I’m talking about placing your face against it to see if the art is a canvas or a board. How was it implemented? . A loupe or jeweler’s loupe is useful here if you’re looking for art, but it’s not absolutely necessary. You do this crazy behavior to look for free marks like brush strokes, color blends, lines and dots.
Brushstrokes: You can see the brushstrokes at first glance, but can you identify the actual painting from the images below?
Yes, the one on the left is the original painting. The one on the right is a vintage fake that was designed to look like it was painted with a brush! This is a good example of things to look for. Another well constructed and original example is given below. Notice how you can see the texture of the “brush strokes” from a distance, but up close it’s clear they’re artificial.
If your image has artificial waves like the one on the right, it’s not an image. It is very informative that you can “feel” the brush strokes. Well, people take advantage of this and create duplicate images with text like the one above. They are very common (the only way to tell if a brushestorx painting is legit is to look at the edge of the “painting”. The printed artwork above has a well defined line at the edge of the art where it meets the .canvas. ..paintings never have a perfectly straight edge !) The original texture with even brushstrokes can be seen in the image below.
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No text? Is it a watercolor or a print? – Okay, so take a closer look at your art and there is no texture or noticeable brush movements. Some things are possible – this is a watercolor, a drawing, an original “print” (etching, lithography or serigraphy, etc.) or a print. Since we’re discussing paintings today, we won’t go into detailed differences between the original “prints” above, but they can still be valuable (so don’t be discouraged, just wait for the print mail!)
Watercolors and drawings don’t have a lot of texture due to the nature of the medium (like paint or pencil), but there are a few things you can do to determine if it’s legit. First, look along the edge line – does the color bleed a little onto the fabric? Is there any obvious fading in the “thickness” or strength of the paint? Or does the color suddenly stop? Check out the watercolor below to get an idea of what I mean.
Again, magnification is useful here, but you can clearly see how the paint flows and changes in thickness in watercolor compared to print, where it stops abruptly. Similar things happen with drawings, albeit on a much smaller scale (see pencil drawings below).
Traces: If you don’t see evidence of hand application, you’re probably looking at some kind of trace. It’s not always bad! Some prints or engravings can be incredibly valuable! But you are no longer dealing with unique work.
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There are many types of original prints that have value – look for solid colors with clear overlays with no brush marks, high-quality thick paper with a clear indentation around the edge, or something that looks like a print with lots of detail. . If you see any of these, your work is not a painting or a drawing, but it is worth further investigation. See examples below.
If, upon closer inspection, your work has small dots or looks like it was printed on a modern press or magazine, it is probably not worth more than design value. Many modern prints have a series of small dots to indicate that they have been printed. Others are the same and paper thin as if they were mass produced, like the example below.
Therefore, determining whether your work is a painting is a process of careful consideration, inspection, and elimination. If you have brushstrokes, bleeding paint, traces of hand application, there is a good chance that it is a painting. If you have artificial textures, solid block colors in a printed stroke, or your work consists of tiny dots, you’re looking at a print, not a painting.
If you’ve been to an estate or garage sale, you’ve probably seen people do this before – they pick up a piece of art and quickly turn it up to see the reverse (back) – they quickly try to determine the age and authenticity of the artwork. art.
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By looking at the back of the painting, based on the framing style and the fabric, you can quickly tell if the painting is old. If the fabric is light and not old, it is modern. If there is wear, it is old.
Modern paintings can still be valuable, but if you look at a painting of a Victorian girl on bright white canvas, it’s obviously a copy.
When you look back, you can see the stretcher (the wood the canvas is attached to), which can help you date the painting and determine if your work is on canvas or board (or wood). There is a better way. To check for holes or strings in the fabric instead of looking ahead. It may also give you the history of the product (often written on the back of high quality products) or it may not give you any information because it was recently made and covered in paper.
If your work is framed and the background is covered with paper, it’s a good idea to take it off when you get home to look at the back of the painting if you think it’s valuable and need it later. Does not provide information. (You might even get lucky and find a hidden original Declaration of Independence!)
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Looking at the back is also a good way to find a signature or title if it’s not on the front. The signature is the most valuable part of the identification process.
The artist is the one who produces the most added value in almost all cases. Thus, determining the artist name is where you should spend the most time.
Paintings are usually signed in one corner (usually the bottom corner), although they can also be signed on the back of the painting or on an object of the painting (e.g. a book or letters, especially before 1900). How did I say that the paper backing of the frames can be removed during the inspection? Make sure you haven’t accidentally deleted any important data. Read each label and note on the picture.
If your painting is not signed, it must be of high quality or have written proof to be worth anything. Often, if a painting is not signed, it can be “consigned” to the artist. But again, this is not always important for value, and the painting must be of very high quality or from a valuable period. For example, below I have an unfinished painting of an old master. It’s not signed, so it’s not as valuable as it could be, but it’s early (1600-1700) and probably French, so it still has some value.
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Most art signatures are not 100% legible. Sometimes you will find the name written as block text. Rather, they are usually only partially identified.
There are several tricks to identifying the name of a partially invalid signature. The first thing is to do a simple Google search of the name as it appears along with the word “artist”. If the artist is famous, it is possible that the results will change something like this. The next step is to try variations of the name as you see it.
If a standard search