Oil paintings are intricate and gorgeous additions to any home. Oil has smaller paint particles, which means a longer, more painstaking process for the artists using the medium—but it also means richer, deeper colors that can make your home more beautiful. The process to make an oil painting may take weeks, adding to the history of every piece, and because oil painting is such a hardy medium, the finished products can last for generations without wearing. 

Best Places to Buy Oil Paintings

So where can you find oil paintings? These are some of the best options, both online and offline: 

1. 1st Art Gallery. Your first option is 1st Art Gallery, the world’s largest supplier of made-to-order oil paintings. Supplying both original work and reproductions, 1st Art Gallery has a massive archive of work to choose from that will leave almost any art enthusiast satisfied. If you aren’t sure where to start, begin by browsing different eras and styles until you find a section that stands out to you. 

2. eBay. If you have some idea of what you’re looking for, eBay is another valuable resource. Offering both original work by independent artists and historical works for serious collectors, you can find almost anything here—and you might be able to snag a favorable price, thanks to the site’s auction-style formatting. 

3. Etsy. If you’re looking for modern works by amateur artists, Etsy is one of your best bets. While many serious, dedicated artists use the platform, you’ll also find thousands of shop owners who are just beginning their work in oil painting. That means you’ll find works of reasonable quality from virtually unknown artists at a reasonable price; just be prepared for a longer hunt. 

4. In-person auctions. In-person auctions are always a gamble. Sometimes, you might show up to see no art whatsoever. Other times, you may make the find of a lifetime—and score an amazing price for the work. You can use a site like AuctionZip to find an auction near you

5. Art walks. Art walks happen in creative districts, usually once a month, to draw in new crowds and push their constituents’ creative limits. Usually free to the public, art walks take place throughout a neighborhood, often going through at least one formal gallery, and you’ll have multiple opportunities to view and purchase art in many mediums (including oil paintings, of course). 

6. Other art shows. Pay attention to local event announcements in your city. Chances are, you’ll be able to find an art show, craft show, convention, or similar event where you can find inexpensive art on sale from a host of creators. The more you engage with this local community, the more you’ll be able to find little-known opportunities like these, and if you get to know your favorite artists personally, you could end up with a steady stream of new pieces you love. 

7. Word of mouth. Don’t underestimate the power of word of mouth. Talk to your friends, coworkers, and family members about your interests. They may have an artist they recommend for commissioned work, or may be able to recommend a resource. If you have any artist friends, this is especially powerful. 

Tips on Finding the Right Piece

You may have an idea of where to go at this point, but do you know how to find the “right” piece for your home? These tips can lead you in the right direction: 

* Work with a professional. If you’re new to the art world, consider consulting a professional (or at least someone who’s bought art before) when purchasing your first work. They’ll help you understand what makes a “good” oil painting, and help you identify your main priorities. 

* Match colors and style. If your house is relatively new or if you’re undergoing renovations, you can pick a landmark piece and design a room around it. Otherwise, you’ll need to select art pieces that fit your various rooms. Either way, you’ll need to think carefully to match the colors, style, and tone of the piece with your other interior designs. 

* Trust your instincts. Ultimately, art is subjective, so don’t think too hard about your decision. Choose the piece that speaks to you personally, even if it’s an unconventional choice. 

If you decide not to go with an oil painting, you should at least consider getting some art for your home. Art has the power to reshape the interior design of your home, giving you more control over accent points and the overall tone of each room in your house. It also serves as a point of inspiration and creativity, which is especially important if your career or hobbies require you to be creative. 

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