- by Barney Davey
Renowned illustrator Drew Friedman, in collaboration with Irwin Chusid and Barbara Economon, has launched a new Web site at: DrewFriedman.net.
Renowned illustrator Drew Friedman, in collaboration with Irwin Chusid and Barbara Economon, has launched a new Web site at: DrewFriedman.net. The site is the exclusive source of fine art prints featuring new works by the iconic illustrator.
The art, much like the artist's career, is exceptional and eclectic. In our age of celebrity worship, e.g., 3 million Twitter followers for Ashton Kutcher, (no offense AK, I get you are riding the wave, but really, who cares and who are those people?), it's refreshing to find an artist who chooses mostly offbeat, anti-celebrity subjects to immortalize in his unique style.
Many who have followed this blog for the past three years know I am not a fan of limited editions for digitally printed art. That is, with the exception of very low numbers. It's arbitrary, but I have put the number at 100. Otherwise, it's just a marketing gimmick in my humble opinion.
Friedman and his experienced art professional partners have launched the site and the publishing business on a model of using the extremely low number of 30 in their editions. Now, if you are an artist who creates slowly, this can be a financial problem. On the other hand, if you can turn out the work quickly enough, a low-numbered edition model puts you in a league of your own. Friedman's achievements and oeuvre already put him in such a league. Following up with this daring and unique idea of very small edition sizes is sure to create devoted collectors for his work.
The flip side of low numbers is unlimited numbers. I'm not necessarily suggesting the idea for Drew Friedman and company, although I think it could work for them with the right image. As always, I feel the way to make unlimited editions have value is to number them sequentially. If the artist sells thousands of an image, everyone in the distribution channel, including buyers, gets to enjoy the art.
With nothing but brave conjecture to back up the theory, I go out on limb to say the low numbers of a sequentially numbered edition would have more value than higher numbers. In other words, they would be collectible despite freshly minted reproductions being available. Perhaps some other numbers would be valuable as well. If a date was painted in the picture, or perhaps the number correlating with subject's birth, death or debut date would have more value. Collectors tend to make up their own rules about what aspects make an item dear to them.
Best wishes to Drew, Irwin and Barbara for tremendous success in their new art publishing venture!