July 16, 2024

Hiring a decorative artist to work in your home is a personal experience. From the beginning planning stage to the actual process of painting, a homeowner and artist will spend many hours together. Below are five tips to aid the creative process, and insure you hire the most qualified studio that fits your projects needs.

Finding the Artist.

Home Shows, interior designers, and local home magazines are ideal places to find professional artists. Check out the walls of established hair salons or restaurants. Try the local phone book– many times artists are included in the paint contractors category.
A quick search on the web, using key words such as “Des Moines Faux Finish” may lead to immediate local results when looking for a specific area. Make sure to go through the first three pages of your search. You may also try a national database.

Questions For The Artist and You.

When contacting the artist be prepared with questions. First, make sure the mural artist is an actual business entity, rather than a hobby painter. For example, decorative artists work is considered to be part of the construction industry in Iowa. Artists working on walls and interiors of homes are required to be a registered contractor with the state. To see if the artist your considering to hire check here , ask if the artist is covered by insurance. It is extremely important to ask if they are covered not only by liability insurance, but that all helpers on the jobsite are covered by workers compensation insurance. Decorative artists work on ladders and scaffolding on most jobs; safety must come first.

Other questions to ask include:

 Do you have a website?

 What is your lead time?

 How much is your consultation fee?

 Will you make a sample of any proposed ideas?

 Where have you been trained?

 Do you use professional, durable products?

While on the phone be prepared to explain to the artist what your vision and goals are for the proposed project area. Discuss ideas such as interior design style, or if you would like to add texture to the wall. Specific problems you are trying to solve, such as incorporating color into an open floor plan are crucial. Be ready to talk about budget–what is the amount of money you feel comfortable spending on a project.

During The Consultation.

Most artists will meet potential clients in their homes. An average consultation takes approximately 60 to 90 minutes. If more than one room is to be discussed, prepare the artist before hand so plenty of time is scheduled. For large projects, a consultation can run considerably longer. Ideally, all decision makers are present. The artist will bring a portfolio of work. The portfolio can include a number of items such as large samples boards, photographs of completed homes, idea books, and color decks. Make sure to judge the portfolio on the quality of items, and not the sheer number. However, an artist who has many years experience will have a much larger portfolio than an artist starting out. Let the artist know what your budget is. If you do not feel comfortable, speak in broad terms such as By telling the artist an approximate price range, the best finishes can be chosen that fall into the budget. The artist will also measure out the wall or ceiling area, and take your contact information to return your estimate.

Compare Estimates.

When comparing estimates from several different decorative studios, make sure you are comparing the same finishes. An eight layer finish can range in the 8-12 s.f. category, while a 3 layer finish may price at 4 s.f. Glazed walls will be significantly less than textured finishes. The below example gives different price comparisons:
A small powder room is to mimic an old rustic and aged leather that finisher A. refers to as a colorwash. The finisher prices this at $1300. Finisher B doesn’t recommend the color red for the bathroom, but suggest a light tan leather look, also referred to as a colorwash on their estimate. The price is 650. Though it may seem as finisher A is double the price, the finishes are greatly different. The red leather finish will need a grey primer basecoat, as well as 2 coats of red paint. Red paint is often priced slightly higher than other colors, due to the red colorants added. The brown leather finish may not require a basecoat–the homeowner has leftover wall paint, and the painter has agreed this will work great for the basecoat by showing the homeowner a sample. The painter then will have to glaze the walls.


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