I’m a horrible gift-giver. I have learned that if you give something you would like to receive yourself (except for a bowling ball with your own name engraved on it), it comes across.
While still an investment, I’m consistently surprised by the relative affordability of up-and-coming artists. And if you choose a piece because it speaks to you, it will speak to the person you give it to. It’s a gift to you and to the artist; it feels great to support them. Rob has this amazing collection of outsider art from ebay that gave me the bug.
I started out following Alyson Fox, a Texas-based fashion illustrator-cum-artist who sketches these amazingly haunting images on all kinds of surfaces—clipboards, vintage book covers, and more. She lists sites where her prints are available, but I have emailed her personally to hear about available pieces—she’s really sweet to boot.
My newest obsession is photographs of dioramas, especially super bizarre ones. A favorite is Laura Plansker. To see is to understand. Prints (framed or unframed) are available through her website if you send her an email.
Also amazing is Brandon Bird, who paints with an incredible sense of humor. Be sure to check out my favorite, “Two Warriors Come Out of the Sky” which is painted to look like cave drawings, but features some very special guests from Dixie.
Give and give generously. Most of these outsider art pieces from ebay run around the $15 range.