​​Frequently Asked Questions 
Can you offer some tips when buying art?
What is a limited edition?  
What is hand embellishing?
What is an original painting?
What are the differences between oil and acrylic paints?
What is a ‘resin finish?
Does the painting come with the frame?
Do you deliver?
Do the website images accurately represent what I will be sent?
Does the price include the frame?
How accurate are the item dimensions listed on your web pages?
Do you offer Finance packages?
Should I consider insurance?
Can you offer some tips for selling art?

Can you offer some tips when buying art?
Fall in love
Art is the ultimate personal statement. In many ways, your choices in art are a window to your soul. If you buy the art you love, art that speaks to you, your collection will become a visual collage of who you are. Although buying art can lead to some great investments, most people buy simply because they form a real connection with the work. Follow your instincts - you want to make sure that you are going home with something that you will continue to enjoy for years to come.
 
Start with Limited Editions
If you’re thinking about starting a collection, then limited editions can be a good place to begin. They can provide a more accessible and affordable entry point into the market. As a rule of thumb, buy from as small an edition as you can.

Don't worry too much about the specific edition number, instead you should make sure the work is in good condition and published either by the artist or a reputable print publisher or gallery. Edition prints should be personally signed and come with an authenticity certificate by the artist/publisher.
 
Do your research
Visit as many galleries, exhibitions and studios as you can to build up an understanding of your likes and dislikes. Ask questions and be inquisitive and approach us for help and advice. We are passionate about art and we are desperate to impart our expertise!
 
Attend art fairs
Art fairs enable you to see many different galleries in one place.  Remember that gallery owners will represent more artists than they have space to show on their stands, so don’t be afraid to ask to see more work.
 
Look out for rising stars
Check out our ‘Emerging Artists’ to discover new and exciting artists. Sign up to receive our emails and like us on Facebook to see who is new and what is going on at London Row.
 
Keep your standards high
Whatever your rationale and budget for buying art, settling on the highest standard for every purchase should be one of your basic buying principles. Don’t purchase work of lesser quality, just because it’s by a high profile artist.
 
Go with your instincts
Don’t buy artwork because someone’s telling you it is fashionable or a good idea. Go for work that speaks to you and think about how it makes you feel. There’s no guarantee it’ll increase in value, so don’t anticipate this. If it does, see it as a bonus not a pre-requisite for buying. Try not to get swayed into a decision because of all the ‘noise’ that might be surrounding a popular artist.
 
Handle with care
Once you’ve found the art you love, don’t forget to care for it to ensure long term enjoyment from your collection.  Avoid sunlight and think about how light moves around a room across the course of a day.  If you can spend a bit more, get works such as drawings, photographs and prints framed behind museum-quality UV filter glass or perspex - it’s really worthwhile in terms of preserving colour and paper quality.
 
Do your paperwork
Keeping an inventory of what you’ve bought means you can record the little details about a work that you might easily forget. It’s not a bad idea to retain the invoice and a copy of the artists CV too. If you start to amass lots of works, seriously think about specialist art insurance for your collection.
 
Expand your knowledge
If you are looking to gain a better insight of the art world or are interested in getting expert advice on how to buy and collect contemporary art and craft, why not sign up for a course or join a group or membership organisation such as The Contemporary Art Society.  Not only will you gain more knowledge, but being part of the ‘bigger picture’ may give you that push to buy your first piece of art. It could even give you that extra bit of confidence to buy more adventurous artworks by artists you may not have considered before. Aside from the above, it’s also a great way to meet like-minded people who share your interest in the visual arts.
 
Set a budget
In your mind you really need to set a budget in terms of what you can afford and we would say you have to be prepared to spend a little bit more.  If you really love it, trust your instincts. As my grandmother used to say, true love is forever.  Set a budget and be prepared to spend a little more, A, because there’s shipping and insurance and things like that; but, B, because if it’s something you really love and it’s a little bit over your price range, I would say “stretch”.  Life is short and you want to be inspired. To make buying a more affordable experience We offer an INTEREST FREE service and payments can be spread over 12 months - please contact us for more information.
 
Buy more and enjoy the journey
Build a relationship with your gallery and they will look after you and get to know what you do and don’t like. Don’t be afraid to ask your gallery for advice, if you like a particular style or theme explore it, and remember don’t buy anything you don’t really want, it is something to be enjoyed and cherished and a good gallery will want to work with you to make sure you are happy with the collection you are building.

What is a limited edition?  
A limited edition is normally hand signed and numbered by the artist, typically in pencil if the collection has been produced on paper i.e. 14/195. The first number is the number of the certified print itself and the second number is the number of how many editions are in the collection, in this case it would be a total collection of 195. Each piece is hand signed by the artist and supplied with a certificate of authenticity which will also have the edition number on the certificate.

What is hand embellishing?
Hand embellish is where the giclee print has been embellished with paint to recreate some of the original brush strokes. This adds depth, texture and makes it look more like the original painting.
The word "embellish" as defined by Webster is "to make beautiful by ornamentation, to adorn or to add fanciful details to."  When we’re talking about art on canvas, embellishing refers to painting over areas of the image to enhance colour and/or to add brush strokes to the finished work.  Embellishing techniques are as unique as the artists themselves – some use oil paints while others use clear gesso, some have a great deal of texture while others apply a thin layer of paint. 
In either case, the canvas has more texture and dimension when it is embellished and looks more like an original work of art.
 
Looks more like an Original Painting
Since embellished canvases involve greater involvement on the part of the artist than an unembellished one, art lovers can get a step closer to an original at a fraction of the cost. Some artists create a regular edition for example 195 and a deluxe version which is hand embellished, as did the late artist Pino, who had 295 in his regular edition for his limited edition giclees and only 95 in his embellished edition. The more limited supply and increased demand make for a more collectible piece of art.
Please see a close up of embellished work by our Canadian Artist Danielle O’Connor Akiyama.

What is an original painting?  
An original painting is the first creation of a piece of work. Limited editions and prints are taken from the original painting by photographing the image at a very high resolution so that the reproduction quality is as close to the original as it can be.
  • Do your homework. Research the piece, know the artist's work, look at many of his pieces, compare signatures and get close-ups of the signature. Increasing your knowledge is critical to examining the piece and knowing what to look for when judging authenticity.
  • Use your nose. When you do get your hands on the painting, smell it. With oil paintings it takes a long time to dry and years to completely lose the smell of oil.   
  • Decide about how the piece feels to you. Balance everything, many fakes for example have no depth of paint, layers, it's easy to copy a piece electronically but a photo copier cannot get the layers of paint a real piece has.
What are the differences between oil and acrylic paints?  
Oil paints, which have been in use since the 15th century, use oil as the medium to bind the colour pigments together. They were the dominant medium used until recently, when acrylics were developed (in the 1960's). Oil paints have the following characteristics: they generally are slow-drying; they tend to be richer and more luminous on the painted surface; and if applied correctly, will last many, many years. The longer drying time is good for painters who work slowly, they will remain wet while you are working on the painting and generally take from 24 to 72 hours (sometimes longer) to dry. This slow to dry quality also means that tubes of oil paint have a much longer shelf life than acrylics.
 
Acrylics are a water-based, polymer (plastic) material, which means that they dry very, very fast - sometimes on the brush while you are working. A disadvantage of acrylics is that often the colours will change when they dry (to a slightly lighter shade, for example). The shelf life of acrylics is much less than for oil paints. Because of their plastic makeup, acrylics are thought to "last forever"; however, only time will confirm this. Acrylics are, however, the most popular type of paint used nowadays and probably the biggest reason is that, for painters who like to work fast, the fast-drying acrylic paints allow for putting more colour on without it mixing with the layers underneath, as happens with oil paint. 

What is a ‘resin finish’?  
A ‘high gloss resin finish’ gives paintings a glass-like crystal clear coating adding a shiny, reflective surface coating the finished piece. Many artists are now using resin to give luminosity and depth to their work. Artists such a Kerry Darlington and Danielle O’Connor Akiyama often use resign to finish their work.

Does the painting come with the frame?  
Our paintings are supplied mounted and framed unless stated otherwise. Each artist has chosen each frame to complement each work of art so we always recommend trying the existing frames before decided to have the painting reframed.

Do you deliver?  
The world is a small place these days thanks to the excellent courier services available.  We work with a number of reputable carriers depending on the destination for delivery.  Whether it is for the UK or overseas we offer a reliable and cost effective service – prices are quoted on application.

Do the website images accurately represent what I will be sent?
We strive for a high degree of image accuracy. However, due to modern technology and screen definition jpegs of an image cannot always give an accurate colour representation.  In our experience if you love the jpeg image you will be over the moon with the piece as they always look so much better when seen in the ‘flesh’.

Does the price include the frame?
Our paintings are supplied mounted and framed unless stated otherwise. Each artist has personally chosen ‘their frame’ to compliment the painting and we always recommend trying the framed pieces first before deciding to change to an alternative one.

How accurate are the item dimensions listed on your web pages?
All our paintings sizes are verified, but due to industry standards sizes can vary slightly up to (1½").

Do you offer Finance packages?
We believe that beautiful works of art should be available to everyone, why not join the growing number of clients who use our interest free finance package to enable them to enjoy building their very own art collection.

Should I consider insurance?
Artwork is one of the few insurable items that is more likely to appreciate in value over time. Specialist cover is therefore required to ensure you get the protection you need. 
Since art is generally unique, you want to make sure you have claims settlement   options which fully compensate for any damages.
Our insurer, Chubb, provide insurance for more privately owned art than any other insurer in the world. 
The benefits of Utimart Portfolio insurance include: 
  • No Excess
  • Value Increase Protection Cover of up to 200%
  • Warranty Free
  • Extensive Worldwide Cover - Including Transit
  • All Risks Cover - Including Accidental Damage
Further details available upon request please call 01462 347 347 

Can you offer some tips for selling art?
Who is the artist?
If you are interested in selling your piece of art it is important to know who the artist is and to research the history of this artist. We advise to follow your heart when buying an addition to your art collection and not to be too hung up on the artist, however when you are trying to sell your piece it is useful to have some history to get a better understanding of the artist behind the work. Research should give you a good indication of when and where you art was produced as well as the meaning or purpose of the work.

Signature?
A good indication of the artist is to look of a signature on the front or back of the art.
You can try and identify your artist signature online at http://identifyartistsignatures.com/category/monogram/
You might also like to examine the signature at http://www.artistssignatures.com/  but you do have to pay to access their full listing.

Certificate of Authenticity?
A certificate of authenticity is a good indication of the piece is genuine and has come from a well-respected publisher however certificates can also be forged so it is good to keep this with the painting at the time valuation.

Original or Limited Edition Print?
Originals are more sort after than limited edition prints however when the limited editions come from a small edition size and are sold out they do increase in value.
Originals are identified by their brushstrokes, texture and vibrancy. Limited edition prints can be identified by a number in the corner of the painting usually next to the artist signature. For example edition number 25 from an edition size of 195 would look like 25/195. Limited edition prints usually come with a certificate of authenticity displaying the artist name, title of the artwork, edition number and signature.

Which Medium?
Oil, acrylics, watercolour, pencil, ink, enamel paint are just some mediums that might have been used to create an original work of art. It is good to know which medium your art is created for when you come to sell it. 

Is your piece art in its original frame?
Frames are usually handmade and selected by the artist so we do advise you keep the original frame otherwise you run the risk of losing some value and recognition on the painting. Please ensure the frame is in perfect condition.

Get it Valued
Please find below the link to the UK wide member of the Society of Fine Art Valuers, hopefully you should be able to find a fairly local valuer who would be able to give you a bit more info about your piece. These valuers often hold auctions up and down the country as well which you can attend to get more advice - http://www.sofaa.info/