The first source of inexpensive wall art is (duh) books but don’t limit yourself to just art books. Consider vintage books, vintage cook books, books on history, gardening, flowers, herbs, travel, or poetry. The designs in many illustrated children’s books are wonderful and not just for use in children’s rooms. Browse through your own collection of books, borrow books from friends, or visit the local library.
I have used books to create wall art in 3 ways:
2) by using a home printer to make black and white copies, then using colored pencils to add colors/tones. You don’t have to be an artist to fill in the blanks and on some designs the shading is more or less done for you. Using colored pencils creates an old-fashioned tinted effect and somewhat personalizes the art. Black and white copies are also a great way to create adult coloring pages.
(If you don’t have a home printer, try your local library. They usually have a copier for patron use and it’s generally much fancier than a home printer. Our local library charges 50 cents for color copies and 10 cents for black and white.)
3) and, by disassembling a book (of mine) to obtain the art work within. (I know, I know, sacrilege!)
-Most of the designs are small and if enlarged will distort or lose visual clarity.
-One 4×6 anywhere on almost any wall is going to be out of scale but a grouping of six 4×6’s may work. Small designs work well in a grouping or small gallery.
-Obviously the prints are not gallery or museum quality, but gallery or museum quality can be very expensive.
-Very inexpensive, giving you flexibility to rotate new prints into the mats and frames. It’s an inexpensive way to celebrate the seasons or to easily freshen a room.
-Huge amount of designs available.
The designs shown above are from a great little book The Language of Flowers written and beautifully illustrated by Marthe Seguin-Fontes, 20001. The book is available on Amazon (used copies are available for just under $5.00 including shipping and handling).