I’m hardly an artist, so I was really surprised when someone shelled out cash to buy one of my works of art, and I use that term loosely.
It all started when Kara came home a few Saturdays ago with a stack of canvases, brushes and several bottles of acrylic paint, and told me the whole family was donating artwork to a great program, Wet Paint at the Newport Art Museum. It was about 12:30 in the afternoon and the deadline to submit our creations was 3PM! We had to get to work.
This was quite an edict from the wife. Over the years I’ve painted a few pieces as gifts for Kara, and in high school art class I did these chalk drawings of a seagull (it was never finished) and cheetah that hang in our house today, but I certainly don’t consider myself to be an artist.
Back to Wet Paint. With a deadline looming and inspired by a recent sighting of a Ford Country Squire and memories of my gone but not forgotten beloved Buick Roadmaster Estate Wagon, I quickly painted a cartoonish station wagon beach woody with the super moon over the ocean. Kara took a more simplistic approach, using acryclics to create an inverted beach scene with rocks, and my kids had great fun making their own masterpieces: my son crafted a beach scene and my daughter went for Katy Perry. My brother-in-law Stuart dabbled in the beach scene genre as well. Scroll down for their awesome art.
With the paint still wet, I rushed off to the museum and dropped off our fine art to staffers and volunteers who whisked the paintings away to be displayed. There were about 500 or so entries.
Wet Paint is a fundraiser, and a good one. All the art is auctioned off. Many people bid on their own work starting at ten dollars, essentially buying back their paintings and the money goes to the museum. That is unless, someone out bids you.
A few hours later we returned for the opening and Kara and I submitted out obligatory bids on our family’s paintings and a few others. We ran into lots of Connecticut folks shopping for bargains. We returned the next day and got quite a surprise. My painting had six bids, and eventually sold for $80! The woman with the winning bid, turned out to a friend of ours, and bought it for her grandson’s bedroom. She loved it, and swore it wasn’t a charity case! She really did like it.
We bid on a pair of photographs taken by our friend Dee Gordon, but we lost out on one and went home with another.
By the way, you can get some fantastic real art at Wet Paint, and many folks end up selling their work for big bucks, but remember, most of the proceeds go to the museum. I think the most you can keep is 20 percent. The total haul for Wet Paint? $100,000!
Another budding artist I know painted a beautiful portrait of her husband. She was stunned when someone outbid her at the last minute. She tried to buy the painting of her betrothed back from the buyer, but that art lover refused.