Adorning your home with photographic wall art is a great way to make each room reflect your unique style and assign each area a specific purpose. Decorating each room with art pieces can help separate spaces or make the whole dwelling one cohesive project, depending on your intentions.
Choosing art for each room in your home requires some element of planning, though. Clashing pieces or items that don’t match the scale of your space can get in the way of the vision you have in mind, or the mood you want your rooms to create.
Read on to learn about how to choose appropriate photographic art pieces for each room in your home. Following these guidelines can make it easier to make the spaces you’ve created in your mind become a reality.
The Beauty and Benefits of Nature Photography
As amazing as it sounds, your brain has the same reaction to looking at nature as it does to actually being in nature. You don't believe me? It's true, and a wonderful trick to play on your brain.
The fact of the matter is that people who live in cities and urban areas are 17% more likely to suffer psychological distress of some kind -- anxiety, depression, the usual. You might be thinking you’re perfectly fine living your big city life, fulfilling your big city dreams. I’m sure you’re right. But like it or not, nature is absolutely mandatory in some capacity in order for our brains to function properly. We need it every once in a while to stay sane. Let’s face it, even New Yorkers -- the definitive city-dwellers, if you will -- live in a city that’s centerpiece is a huge park, meant to give them a much needed break from the high energy, high intensity lifestyle of the city.
Why Do Different Rooms Call for Different Art Types?
Each room in your home serves a unique purpose, as such, the way you decorate each room should emphasize its purpose. For example, you probably wouldn’t decorate your bedroom with bright neon lights like you would in your home’s game room. Just like you probably wouldn’t hang nursery art in your garage. Each room should have its own style because each room works differently to serve you in your dwelling.
Below, I'll cover five key rooms in your home, present examples of artwork that fits each space, and list the common elements that go into decorating these spaces.
Living Room Wall Art
A living room is the primary space for visiting in a person’s home, and because of this, the art in this area should be welcoming and promote conversation. Hanging any random piece of wall art isn’t going to create the most balanced room, so when choosing living room art, think about a few things.
Your primary colors, themes, and textures should incorporate your art pieces into the overall flow of the room rather than clashing with them. Making sure that each piece complements the room without overshadowing other art pieces is a smart goal to keep in mind.
When intentional and focused wall art is used, your living room is a perfect place to display a large statement piece, typically hung above a fireplace, a sofa or against the exterior wall of a large staircase. Smaller wall art pieces are often overlooked by the majority of guests. On the other hand, large beautiful scenes of nature command attention, creating welcoming, conversation starters for everyone who enters your home.
Popular living room art, aside from traditional landscapes includes still life and abstract photography, especially in more modern contemporary home designs. Natural wood or stone sculptures, large crystal and mineral specimens and exotic wood furniture are all design ideas that many use to tie art photography together with the rest of their space and throughout the home.
Bedroom Wall Art
Unlike living rooms, bedrooms are private areas designed to embrace solitude and encourage relaxation. The function of a bedroom influences the pieces of art that should adorn the space, so calm, soothing artwork is usually ideal.
Relaxing colors are important in a bedroom, and much of the time, it’s worth finding art that matches the room’s existing color scheme. Blues and natural shades are common in bedrooms, so try to focus on art that emphasizes these colors.
Landscapes, seascapes and smooth abstract imagery, are all perfect art elements to add to a bedroom.
That said, bedrooms present the greatest opportunity to showcase elements of oneself. Because your bedroom is a space few visitors see, you’re free to choose art pieces that appeal to your sense of calm on a personal level.
Accent pieces are great bedroom additions as well. Small framed prints, simplistic sketches of flowers and leaves, or miniature figurines atop shelves or dressers can add little elements of comfort to a space without drawing attention away from the room’s overall purpose.
Bathroom Wall Art
While bathroom artwork should be minimal compared to other rooms in your home, this room presents you with the chance to have fun and get creative.
Bathrooms are perfect for showcasing statement pieces, quirky art selections, and abstract photography that aims to soothe the viewer.
You might want to combine art mediums in the bathroom as well. For example, a smaller (approx 24”) piece of wall art hanging over the toilet can pair nicely with countertop figurines or tubside sculptures.
Bathroom art can be a combination of style and function as well. Because your bathroom is a designated rest area, adding a unique incense diffuser that makes the room smell like lavender or sandalwood is functional and aesthetically pleasing. In addition, if you store your dirty laundry in the bathroom, keeping hampers that double as artwork removes clutter and enhances the space. Colorful weaved baskets or large pieces of pottery make attractive sculptures as well as laundry enclosures.
Dining Room Wall Art
Dining rooms are another common visiting area in a home, where hosts and their guests gather and share food, drinks, and stories.
While living room art should inspire conversation and tie the room together at the same time, dining room art can be more on the bold side. Taking risks is part of what makes dining room decor so interesting, as it allows you to display art that might not enhance other rooms in your home.
Oversized wall art, dramatic sculptures, vibrant colors, and other elaborate pieces are perfect for dining rooms. If you’re working with wall art, consider making the frames as bold and interesting as the pieces themselves.
In the dining room, the goal is to encourage conversation and keep the energy flowing from person to person. This is compared to living rooms, which aim to start conversations but in a more relaxed and measured manner.
Home Office Wall Art
If you have a home office space, it’s a good idea to spruce it up in a way that not only makes the space more comfortable, but improves your ability to focus as well.
Motivational and inspirational pieces are great for home offices, as are calming images and color schemes associated with positive energy (soft greens, pops of pastel color, natural woods or metals). Popular subjects in office artwork include seascapes, beautiful landscapes & wildlife photography. Often times a natural scene that draws you in and calms you, or a powerful natural element like a large waterfall or majestic mountain scene fit well, depending on the type of work you do.
The purpose of office art is to help you maintain your focus without pushing yourself farther than what’s mentally constructive. You want to feel energized and able to take on the day’s workload, but relaxed enough to manage your time without leading yourself into burnout territory.
Part of the joy of having your own home is finding little ways to make each space therein look and feel like it truly belongs to you. Taking steps to ensure that your home is a representation of you as a person is a crucial component to focus on when you’re turning a house into a home.
The gathering areas in your house should display the same positive elements your family and friends enjoy about you. Your home should make others feel like they’re looking at a visual extension of who you are to them.
The secluded areas in your home should aim to welcome and relax you by showing you the visual cues that affect you most appropriately. If, say, images of waterfalls help ease you into sleep, this element should be a key focus of your bedroom art.
What Makes You Happy?
As every person is unique, the art collections they choose for each room in their homes will be too. Do your best to choose pieces that speak to you and you’ll be sure to make all of your spaces fit the mood you have in mind. If you'd like to explore more of the photography art that I offer, you can get lost in a number of online galleries including nature photography from Iceland to the American Southwest and everything in between.