A Look at Some of My Favorite Coastal-Inspired Art — and How to Hang It


I’ve been on a coastal kick lately. My most recent A-List certainly addresses my penchant for sand, water and sky! Coastal landscapes close to home, exotic tropical islands farther away … Anytime I want to “go” to these areas, I need only look at some of my coastal-inspired art that adorns my home. I encourage clients to surround themselves with art that reminds them of a great travel destination, a memorable trip, a peaceful feeling … and often those pieces feature water.

I think of renowned American writers like Henry David Thoreau and e.e. Cummings, who so aptly described how I feel when I look out to water.

“A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature. — Henry David Thoreau


For whatever we lose (like a you or a me), 
It’s always our self we find in the sea. — e.e. cummings

One of my favorite mediums for capturing water is watercolor! Paint seems to flow on the paper, just like water! Check out the works of local watercolor artist Megan Garbinski (paintings shown here, at top) of Greenbush Media. Look at the colors in those three paintings — love them! Shades of blues, greens and purples blending with sandy beaches and various bodies of water, stands of trees and endless sky. Much of what she paints reflects the northeast side of Michigan.

Peter Payette roseate Soonbills

During our last trip Up North, my family and I stumbled upon the most wonderful little eatery called Coho Café in Frankfort, MI. We soaked up the wall art photos, by Peter C. Payette. One of my favorites is “Lift Off,” of a crane heading out for a fly. Then there was “Roseate Spoonbills,” just gorgeous (see it above).

Coastal-themed images add great pops of color. For example, see the page here from Lonny mag. Neptune’s bounty of treasures is chockful of color and shape, adding wonderful splashes of home-decor intrigue.

lonny, best beach houses

I also adore the black-and-white Venice photos by Jason Henthorne (see below). Oh, but I could certainly find a nice spot to hang the image below! Right now, I’m working on my own gallery of black-and-white photos, taken by yours truly. I’ll post those soon.

Jason Henthorne Venice Italy

And you just can’t go wrong with anything in sepia. See how the last images here evoke a strong reminiscent feel?  The two yacht photos are by Ben Wood and the camel, framed in burled wood, is from Williams-Sonoma‘s home collection.

ben woods photo

Hanging art is an art in and of itself! Here, my best tips for you:

– A large, single piece can be centered on the wall for a pop of color. Or consider hanging two large images low. Remember that even if they are simple images, they become the focal point of the room.

– Consider a geometric grouping with different shaped frames for an interesting look.

– Hang a pair that complements one another; one is perhaps horizontal, while the other is vertical. Put them in oversized, intriguing frames.

– How about a row of same-size frames, which can emphasize the architectural features of the room

– I also like to hang art in a row,vertically, from the largest to smallest.

The bottom line: Surround yourself with art that makes you feel happy, inspires you and evokes good memories.

Do you enjoy coastal-inspired art? Who are some of your favorite artists?

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