Hand Painted Murals vs. Computer Generated Wallpaper Murals and Wall Clings
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Hand Painted Murals vs. Computer Generated Wallpaper Murals and Wall Clings

I must admit that every time I see an ad for computer generated wall art pop up on my computer screen, my heart tightens a little.  I cringe and worry. These businesses specialize in mass produced wall clings and printed wallpaper murals, and they are making it more difficult for independent artists to make ends meet and stay in business.  Their ad pop ups nag me everywhere I go on the internet.   My advertising is almost all word of mouth.  It's hard to compete with them.  It does seem like an easy and convenient way to decorate your nursery, playroom, child's room without the hassle of finding and hiring a muralist, but there are a variety of benefits of hiring an artist to decorate your space.  

Why you should hire an artist, rather than buy wall murals and wall clings from the internet...
1.Guaranteed originality and one of a kind design   
Hiring an artist means you have commissioned a mural designed specifically for you.  A homeowner once asked me to the paint the wall of her newborn daughter's nursery with a replication of a beach landscape painted on canvas by her recently deceased grandmother. Another client asked me to paint her husband's fishing boat and her beagle into a mural scene.  You can't get this kind of individualized customization from wall clings or stock images.   You can be assured that the home or office down the street will not have the same artwork.  
2.The ability to customize  
Sure, the websites say wallpaper murals are customizable in terms of size but not like a handprinted mural.  They can "stretch to fit" their graphics on their computer screen but can they make a monkey's tail curve from one room to another or fill a awkward space above a dormer?  I can have birds fly out of your mural and appear in other areas of the room.  As part of a large mural project in a dentist's office, the client wanted small select elements from the main mural added to each treatment room.  I can do that in a way wall clings cannot. An artist can paint to fit your space, not just offer standard sizes or charge more for custom sizes. If ordered from a website, your mural comes to you in rolls that have to be spliced together accurately to create a scene.  
3. Durability  
A custom hand painted mural will basically be there as long as you want it to.  you don't have to worry about it peeling off or getting damaged.  When you are ready for a new design, you can just paint over it.
4. Saving in time and labor
No searching through pictures on a website is necessary if you are working with an artist.  I have had busy clients tell me they don't know what they want and don't have time to think about it.  They'll say maybe something beach related.  I email sketches and a quote to them several days later, they provide a minute or two of feedback, and then I show up to paint the following week.  They might spend 15 minutes working with me in advance of their ideas appearing on the wall.  That is less time than you would spend on a mural wallpaper website. The computer generated art businesses say the installation of their products is easy. Having never applied wall art, I can't refute this.  But I have put up wall paper before, and it is certainly not foolproof and does take time.  
5. Cost  
While the cost of mural work varies greatly, I can tell you that my quotes are competitive with the cost of mural wallpaper.  Remember, we artists are often in it for the love of it.  We would rather have a chance to paint a wall than not, so we are willing to work with your budget.  This does not mean you should take advantage of us.  We "starving artists" need to eat too and should be fairly compensated for our skilled work.  
6. Quality  
Most people can tell the difference between hand painted work and computer generated art.  You can see the quality in the sheen of the paint, the brushstrokes, and the depth of color.  Also, from what I've seen, wallpaper murals leave quite apparent seams on your wall. 
7. Enjoyment in the process of creation 
 It's fascinating and inspiring to watch art being created in front of your eyes.  Customers love to watch a hand painted scene unfold in front of them on the walls of your business.  I once had a teenager pull up a chair and watch silently as I worked on a mural in a daycare.  If I am working in a public place, people take photos of the work in progress and post to FaceBook.  If I'm working in a school, the children never fail to express authentic appreciation and gratitude.  If the artwork is in your home, your child will know that you had this artwork created specifically for them.  
8. Personal Satisfaction  
You can experience the personal satisfaction of supporting  the arts and small local business in your local community rather than adding to the profits of a huge anonymous business mass producing artwork. You can have the satisfaction of knowing you are doing your part to ensure that artists can continue to create art and be compensated for it.  If you are a business owner, your customers or clients can interact with the process and see the work being done.  This can also be a way to get press coverage.  Its a win-win.  You support local business and in return you get quality workmanship, increased interest, and accolades for supporting the arts.

So if you are considering art for your home or business, first consider hiring an artist. For more information about murals and custom art, visit Designs by Arianne. If you want to watch the process of a mural in progress from start to finish, visit Designs by Arianne on FaceBook, where a new project should be starting soon.  

Thanks for reading,

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