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Graduation season is here and art would make the perfect Graduation Gift! Here are 5 art inspired graduation gift ideas.
  • Gift the gift of friends, Instead of framing that small 8 x 10 photo get it blown up and make it really grab your attention
  • Get the gift of decor with a piece of art by a favorite artist to decorate the dorm or apartment (I suggest acrylic for dorms it is durable and easily cleaned!)
  • Give the gift of inspiration by finding a piece that makes them think of a life goal, use art almost like a vision board.
  • Give the gift of memories by capturing a favorite moment or place and having it printed
  • Give the gift of creativity by photographing a piece of art they created and having it printed
This year give the graduates in your life a gift that they will keep with them forever, the gift of art.   You can find Ellen blogging daily at Thrifty & Chic Mom.

How To Hang Your Art

Tweet Have you ever wondered over the proper height for hanging your art work? While you can hang your art at whatever height you choose there is a standard that works well everywhere, it’s called the 57 Rule. The 57 … Read More

Have you ever wondered over the proper height for hanging your art work? While you can hang your art at whatever height you choose there is a standard that works well everywhere, it's called the 57 Rule. The 57 Rule says that the center of your art, not the hook, should be at 57 inches up from the floor. Why 57 inches? This is the average eye viewing height of people and is regularly used y galleries and museums for hanging height. By using this height as the center of your art all the pieces in your home will be hung in harmony no matter the size. You can find Ellen blogging daily at Thrifty & Chic Mom

Not Your Average Family Portrait

Tweet I hope y’all took advantage of our awesome sales to purchase a special print for your special mom for Mother’s Day. Don’t worry, if you didn’t. You can redeem yourself…this Sunday when you gather together with family to celebrate … Read More

I hope y'all took advantage of our awesome sales to purchase a special print for your special mom for Mother's Day. Don't worry, if you didn't. You can redeem yourself...this Sunday when you gather together with family to celebrate the awesome mother you have, be sure to capture some "not your average family portraits". We all have those posed portraits, looking straight at the camera putting our best smile on our face...but I actually find portraits where the subjects aren't necessarily looking at the camera much more interesting. When you capture a "moment" you can truly capture the feeling of the moment. I'll show you what I mean... Aren't these awesome! They just exude so much joy, and as a mother myself I know any mother would love to have a picture like one of these to hang in her home. So get it done this Mother's Day. Capture that moment! And then once you do have it printed with us here at Gallery Direct. You'll be sure to WOW her.
Do you love to have everything in each room match in your house? Do you have a theme throughout your house that flows from room to room? If either of those decorating styles sounds like you then you should consider decorating with prints from the same series. Many artists found on Gallery Direct have created series that are an easy way to decorate your home and know it all goes together. Series come in may different versions from those that are the same color with slight variations like the Seafoam Series by Leslie Saris   Or you can find series that have the same print in multiple colors like the Color Study or Lily Suite by Laura Gunn series Have you ever considered decorating with art in a series? You can find Ellen blogging daily at Thrifty & Chic Mom.

Four Steps to a Better Photo

Tweet With so many great cameras on the market today for great prices almost anyone can take an amazing photo. At Gallery Direct we want your photos to turn out amazing, it makes our job as your printing solution a … Read More

With so many great cameras on the market today for great prices almost anyone can take an amazing photo. At Gallery Direct we want your photos to turn out amazing, it makes our job as your printing solution a lot easier. Here are some tips to taking a better photo. 1. Eliminate red-eye Red-eye is probably the most common and, let’s face it, scariest photo mishap. While there are tons of sources out there that aid in the removal of red-eye, wouldn’t it just be easier to avoid it altogether? What causes it? I was always told that people with light eyes are more prone to red-eye. This may be true, but that never explained why my brown-eyed friends were inflicted with the red-eye as well. Turns out, the main cause is the camera’s flash. The light from the flash reflects off the subject’s eyes and illuminates the blood vessels within the retinas. The result is a red glow scary enough to make you reach for holy water. How do I prevent it? Well, the obvious answer is to avoid using a flash. If you’re unsure about whether or not to use it, take a few test shots first. You might be surprised. If you absolutely need the flash, ask your subject not to look directly into the camera lens. Also, many cameras today come equipped with a red-eye reduction feature. Check your manual to see if this is an option for you. 2. Designate a focal point Have you ever looked at a picture and thought “what am I supposed to be looking at?” Yes, we all have. Even a picture with great lighting and color can be compromised if the subject is nowhere to be found. What causes it? Lots of things, like a competing background, too many landmarks or a subject that’s too far away. Basically just trying to fit too many things in one picture. How do I prevent it? Try not to be distracted by everything around you and focus only what you can see through the viewfinder. Treat what you see as a two-dimensional image with a hierarchy of importance. Sometimes the solution is simply to use the zoom feature or take the shot from a slightly different angle. 3. Make it sharp I know sometimes blurring is intentional and can create really nice photos, but I also know sometimes it’s not. What causes it? Blurry photos are the result of either a moving subject or a moving photographer and the wrong shutter speed. How do I prevent it? If you’re taking an action shot, make sure the shutter speed is set appropriately. Many cameras come equipped with an Action mode that automatically sets it for you. If it’s a low-light situation, use a tripod to keep the camera steady and prevent camera shake. 4. Expose it just right Exposure is the amount of light that passes through the camera lens. Too much light can result in a bright, washed-out photo, while too little light makes the photo look dark. What causes it? Dimly lit spaces with a fast shutter speed, or really bright spaces with a slow shutter speed. How do I prevent it? If you have the option to adjust your shutter speed, do so accordingly. If not, don’t fret, there are still things you can do. If you’re shooting indoors, move near a window or lamp to add extra light. If you’re outdoors and it’s too bright, find a shady spot for your subject. Or, as counterintuitive as it sounds, try using the flash to avoid severe shadows. Overcast days really create the best lighting for photography. Well, there you have it. I can sense your photos getting better by the minute!  

New Artist: Wyn Bielaska

Tweet I am very excited about introducing our next new artist, Wyn Bielaska. I have the same passion about architecture, art and graphic design that he does. Wyn is an architect that has worked on a wide range of projects … Read More

I am very excited about introducing our next new artist, Wyn Bielaska. I have the same passion about architecture, art and graphic design that he does. Wyn is an architect that has worked on a wide range of projects in the United States, Canada, China, Europe, and the Middle East. He has also been teaching option studios in the Masters Program at the Faculty of Architecture (now called the Faculty of the Built Environment), University of Washington, since 2002. Being a former Architecture and Graphic Design major in college, I was so happy to see Wyn's art roll in to Gallery Direct. You can see his background in his art, it has an architectural flair & structure and it also has a graphic design edge to it. Last month we released his "Ship Hulls" series. Here are some of my favorites: 21 Again II Noguchi Lost                  

Art Crime Team

Tweet Are there any of you out there that love a good art theft movie like I do? I guess because of my background in art and my job, I always enjoy a great art theft movie like the Thomas … Read More

Are there any of you out there that love a good art theft movie like I do? I guess because of my background in art and my job, I always enjoy a great art theft movie like the Thomas Crown Affair... A wealthy, bored financier orchestrates an elaborate heist to steal a Monet painting valued at 100 million to cure his boredom. Incognito is another art theft movie... It's about a talented art forger who paints a fake Rembrandt that was lost supposedly off the coast of Spain over 350 years ago. Actually, art and cultural property crime is a looming criminal enterprise that has a 6 billion estimated losses annually. Our FBI actually has a special art crime team that's purpose is to recover these precious pieces. One of the top 10 art thefts on the FBI list was the Van Gogh Museum Robbery, a museum I visited in Amsterdam in 2000! I couldn't believe it! "In December 2002, two thieves used a ladder to climb to the roof and break in to the Vincent Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. In just a few minutes the thieves stole two paintings: Van Gogh’s View of the Sea at Scheveningen and Congregation Leaving the Reformed Church in Nuenen, valued at $30 million. Dutch police convicted two men in December 2003, but did not recover the paintings." Stealing art is like stealing history. All these wealthy art owners own a piece of history, wouldn't we all love to. :) Well if you've browsed around Gallery Direct's Classic Art section you would find out that you could own a very affordable Giclée of a piece of history! So go ahead, stream a great art theft movie tonight and while you're watching that browse our art and order yourself a classic art piece!

Shirley Williams Art Prints

Tweet Have you checked out the art we’ve launched on Gallery Direct by Shirley Williams? I love getting to know our artists, and was able to meet Shirley face to face. She’s very sweet and I love her art! She, … Read More

Have you checked out the art we've launched on Gallery Direct by Shirley Williams? I love getting to know our artists, and was able to meet Shirley face to face. She's very sweet and I love her art! She, like us here at the Gallery Direct Blog, loves to blog about her work and what she's doing at her studio. Start following her on Shirley Williams Art Blog. Her abstract paintings show so much movement. The colors are so clean and vibrant. Her art would brighten up any space! Some of my favorite pieces by her are: Transforming Current II Horizon IV   Core Brick Which is your favorite? Stay tuned into the Gallery Direct Blog, I will be sharing about another new artist we recently launched!    
When it comes to Mother's Day and photo gifts people immediately think of mom and her kids or grand-kids. While that is a great idea you can only do that so many years, this year try some of these unique photo ideas and put them on canvas with the $49 photo upload deal going on right now! * Put your Mother's wedding photo on canvas. Unlike today when our parents where married putting your photos on canvas was not an option so surprise her by doing it now * Put a picture of your mother's parents or siblings on canvas. My mom is one of 8 and has a photo of all of them together when they are young, she would love that put on canvas for her. * Put a generational photo on canvas. I have a photo with 4 generations of women in it, how special would that be on canvas. * Put the family namesake on canvas. Is your mom named after a family member? Put that person on canvas. * Put a photo collage of your mom as child on canvas. Help preserve special family photos for generations to come by putting them on canvas. You can find Ellen blogging daily at Thrifty & Chic Mom.
I have always loved mirrors as decor, so often people only look to mirrors as a way to check there appearance but decorating with mirrors can really bring a room to life. There are so many benefits to decorating with mirrors including:
  • Mirrors make a room appear larger. When strategically placed you can create the illusion of a bigger space. I love mirrors above fire places, at the ends of hallways or top and bottom of stairs.
  • Mirrors make a room brighter. Add a mirror to a small dark room and suddenly the lights are brighter and the sunshine stronger.
  • Mirrors are great for casual or formal spaces. If you have trouble setting the tone in a room a mirror is a great choice simply pick a frame that fits the room style and then add your art or leave blank.
Gallery Direct offers art and photos on mirror with several framing options, it is a surprisingly elegant and fun way to display art in your home be sure to check out this great decor option. You can find Ellen blogging daily at Thrifty & Chic Mom.