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How To Start An Art Collection Without Going Broke

Hyperrealistic Drawing of hands

As you get older, richer and hopefully wiser, you realize that there is a need for a little ‘culture’ in your life.   It’s time to move into adulthood with ‘serious’ art work.  But, how do you do it without breaking the bank?  This is a guest post by Kim Smith, who is an internationally recognized pencil artist best known for his hyper-realistic images of the natural environment and historical architecture.  Since moving from Canada to The Bahamas more than 30 years ago, Smith has made the “up close and personal ” pictures of Bahamian scenes his signature style.  Here he walks us through how to get started as a serious art collector at an affordable price.

Take it away Kim.


Getting Started

     In a depressed economic climate, many people who love art and want to begin collecting are often intimidated by the prices of original art exhibited by local artists.   Without “breaking the bank” it is still possible to build an affordable art collection.

     Collecting Limited Edition prints is something that is enjoyed by people all over the world. Some collect for the pleasure of owning an exclusive piece of art while others collect for the potential  profit that they could make in the years to come. Collecting art should become an evolutionary process. By starting your art collection with limited edition prints you will find that your preferences for, and knowledge of  art will grow to the point where you will be able to afford original artwork and expand your collection.

Why Prints and Are They ‘Real’ Art?

     Limited Edition prints ensure both the quality and essence of the artist’s work and are only one level below original art, allowing novice art collectors to acquire quality art at more affordable prices. The two most common processes of printing limited edition

Hyperrealistic Drawing of hands

Hyperrealistic Drawing – Miss Emily’s Eleven String

prints are offset lithography and giclee. The results are very similar and any artist with integrity will only issue limited edition prints that are true to the original art work in terms of colour, detail, and sharpness. Each print in the edition is inspected by the artist and  then individually hand signed and numbered by the artist, typically in pencil, in the form (e.g.): 14/100. The first number/top number is the number of the print itself. The second number/bottom number is the number of overall prints the artist will issue of that image. The lower the second/bottom number is, the fewer amount of prints are issued, making these smaller editions more valuable and collectible.

What To Look For In A Print

     When purchasing limited edition art work, look for richness, clarity and archival qualities. Advanced printing techniques with fade resistant inks on archival quality paper will ensure that limited edition prints should survive for at least 70 years.  A Certificate of Authenticity should always come with the limited edition print.

     To protect your limited edition art you should always ensure that the art is framed using acid free materials, preferably conservation mounting and some type of UV protected glass. Depending on what framing shop you use, you may need to ask for these items specifically.  Some stores will just put your print on whatever paper is at hand.  This will destroy the print in time. While you are at, never hang your art in direct sunlight or illuminate your art with floodlights or a spotlight.

Bahamian Artists Online

Only a small number of artists in The Bahamas produce limited edition prints. myself, Max Taylor, Thierry Lamare, Marjolein Scott, Malcolm Rae, Nicole Minnis-Ferguson, and Roshanne Minnis-Eyma are just some of the professional artists who issue limited edition prints.


The key to beginning your art collection is to start small and choose art that is right for you. Try to select art images that make you

Triton Shell - Hyper-realistic Drawing. Coloured Pencils on Paper.

Triton Shell – Hyper-realistic Drawing. Coloured Pencils on Paper.

go “wow” and images that you will love and can live with for a long time.


To learn more about hyperrealism, art in The Bahamas, or improving your own drawing skills, visit




A Short List of Productivity Tools & Techniques for 2014

Ellen and the wall of lists

First the Bad News:

If you made New Year’s Resolutions chances are, you’re already struggling.  Statistically speaking, while 62% of people make resolutions at least some of the time just 8% will fulfill them.  Only 26% of people will still be working on their resolutions come June.  Exactly why, you’re having problems is explained HERE.  The worse part is that the majority of resolutions are about Self-Improvement or Education.  When you fail at these you tend to feel even more bummed out and disappointed with yourself.

The Good News:

Here is a list of resources that have helped me with my self-improvement goals.  Having tested and implemented them I can recommend these to you.  Yes, I could have added more things,but it’s not important how many options you have but if you use ANY.

Here they are by Category:


Considering how much time and money is spent on learning, there should be more information on HOW to learn and what methods are best.  Scientific American Mind did just that in their September/October 2013 issue.  You can find the magazine and read the article or just read my crib notes by clicking on the links below.

Speed Learning

Techniques for Studying


How little time it takes for anyone to get pretty good at almost anything is astonishingly short according to Josh Kaufman.  He is the author of the book “The First 20 Hours” and while the book is okay, the most important information in it was condensed for this blog post.

How to Acquire Any New Skill in 20 Hours or Less


Productivity & Time Management

Ever wondered how to get more done or why doesn’t more get done?  When it comes to time management, I often ask, “How is it that the day lasts so long but still goes by so quickly?”

Watch these three videos on how to get more done each day. Total running time is 10 minutes.



The Accountability Chart at 1:55 on the last video has been pure gold for me.  If you decide to use it I’d suggest using a paper datebook/diary of some sort.

Other Stuff

Now that you’ve learnt how to better manage your time (we both know you’re going to waste some of it anyway) here are some posts and an infographic to keep you focused for the long haul.

You need a ritual to get things done.  No matter how weird the ritual might be if it works, it works.   This series of posts on is better than the book of the same name.  Read, Laugh and Learn from the masters of their crafts.

Daily Rituals

A blog dedicated to Productivity, Creativity, Habits and Happiness based on the latest scientific research but still easy to read

Need a gun to your head to get you motivated and keep you on course?

WHO is most likely to succeed, and WHY?

Check out this infographic.

That’s it! Tips, Tools and Techniques to make 2014 a year in which resolutions are kept and your friends are made envious.  If you have any further tips that should have made this list, please add them to the comments section.






6 Things I Learnt About Blogging, After I Quit Blogging.

Wooden stemmed glasses.  Click here to see more

Here is some of what I learnt by not blogging for six months. * Information is like money, you can’t take it with you.   * Perfection is the enemy of Production   * When content consumption surpasses content creation, you are NOT on the path to success.   During those six months I didn’t […]

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How To Achieve World Class Productivity & Creativity: Lessons From Geniuses

Photo Credit: Ben Heine via Compfight cc

     We’ve all been taught to admire the super producers.  The people who can churn out masterworks in literature, visual arts and the sciences are regularly labeled, ‘geniuses’. Too often we forget the words of Thomas Edison “Genius is 1 percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration”. Creative Professionals  know that the fires of inspiration […]

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On Writing: 400 Words That Explain My Process

a hand writing

As much as I love writing, I also hate it.  Where do I begin? Literally, where do I begin?  When it comes to writing, this question always arises.  Do I start with a question, with a strong statement, an analogy?  Do I write it out in long-hand first and then type or do I just […]

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