Quick update to my post on Jamie McPhail's encaustic journey: I purchased her painting - the one I featured in the blog entry, for full price, in cash. I support other artists whenever I can, and I have never regretted a single purchase. Sales don't just feed our families. As artists, sales validate our work and give us the creative energy to keep going, in addition to the security that the lights will stay on while we work.
It is possible to collect original fine art at every price point. You may start with silkscreen posters like those of Ron Liberti, or save your money for a special splurge. Artists who are worth a damn highly value their fans and collectors, and appreciate feedback even if you can't purchase. Still, nothing sends a stronger message to an artist that they have connected with an audience than a purchase. Maybe the next coffee mug you buy could be from Jason Bige Burnett, a fantastic artist and a delightful teacher. As we slip into the end of summer, artists are working on their holiday inventory. Think about having a Handmade Holiday season, and introduce some art into your everyday life.