Kym Shields from Fineprintco in Drummoyne shares her tips on how to choose an artwork for the home. As well as her take on how the Covid-19 pandemic is influencing the kinds of prints people want on their walls.
Tell us a little bit about yourself
I am a busy mum to two girls and two dogs. When I’m not at the FPC gallery I like to go to the gym, spend time at the beach with my family or curl up with a good book. A Friday night watching Netflix with a packet of Twisties and a glass of champagne is my idea of heaven, but that could be lockdown talking!
What do you love most about what you do?
I believe art is for everyone. It makes us feel, it connects us, it raises our spirit.
I meet really interesting people in our gallery and I love guiding my clients through our range to find the perfect artwork for the space they are looking to fill.
It is wonderful to see a client’s reaction when they find a piece that resonates with them. It’s like you are giving them the final piece to a puzzle!
What path led you to starting Fineprintco?
I’ve always loved photography and art in general. I have a background in magazine publishing and image licensing, and I wanted my next step to be something more tangible, something I could share with the public at large. The art world can be quite intimidating, so I wanted to create a warm and inviting space where people could access really beautiful artwork without the hefty price tag and without any judgement. Art is such a personal thing and if you are going to drill a hole in your wall, hang something up and look at it every day, you have to love it. It has to be right for you.
Is the Covid-19 pandemic influencing the type of prints people buy?
It has a little. People have been gravitating towards our coastal prints and anything that reminds them of their favourite holiday destinations. With travel being so restricted at the moment people are looking to bring nature indoors, and the easiest way to do this is through art. Prints of the Amalfi Coast and the French Riviera by Slim Aarons have been popular because people are longing to go back to the places they love. We are also finding that destinations closer to home, like Byron Bay or Tasmania by local photographers have been popular too. We’d all like to be on holiday, right?
How is your business operating during the current lockdown?
We are open for virtual consultations and welcome calls to answer questions around availability, size, frame choices and artists. The Gallery is a few blocks up from the Bay Run and we have currently have a beautiful display of limited edition prints from Aboriginal artists as well as Archibald prize winner David Bromley. Plus iconic Slim Aarons photographic prints. Take a look through our windows if you’re walking past.
What advice do you give clients when choosing a print for the home?
Buy something you love and don’t go too small. If an artwork is too small it can close in a space, making it seem smaller. Go for the wow factor!
We also recommend mapping out the size of your print on the wall with post it notes or paper, so you can get a sense of the dimensions and how it will fit in the space. This way you can play around with options. Maybe you want one larger print, or you’re considering a few for a gallery hang? We also encourage people to take us up on a complimentary consultation service – we can digitally add prints to your wall so you can get a clearer idea about what you want.
How can you maximise the impact of a print in a home?
Choose the most important and visible wall in your home, such as the entrance or main living space and then make sure the print you have selected fills the space. We specialize in oversized canvases and large framed prints. It’s also about the print itself. Abstract art can add much needed colour to a room without the eye focusing on one thing. Or go for a limited-edition print – you can have a Bromley on your wall without the price of an original – the impact of his work is still the same.
Are there any mindfulness techniques or practices you use to stay grounded during difficult times, like this current lockdown?
I love to do The Bay Run as the sun comes up. I try to exercise before my family wakes up to get some me time in, as it’s not always possible once the household is up and rearing to go.
Guided meditation is my other go-to or popping on a podcast and just letting my mind wander for a bit!
Favourite places in the inner west?
At the moment, given we’re in lockdown, it has to be Harris Farm Market in Drummoyne and a peak next door in the window of Mr Smith’s Interiors. They always have something I covet.