How to Choose the Right Artwork for Your Space

The brain knows what the eye likes right?  We can’t always explain why we like how something looks, we just do.  So you may ask ‘why the article on how to choose art? I’ll just pick one I like’.  While this is a great approach, it may not always be the right one.

Wall Art for Your Business

One of the many things I love about art is that it’s subjective.  This is a particularly important point to consider if you have a responsibility for designing a space that is open to the public such as a hotel, restaurant or cafe.  Another important point to consider is the look and feel you are hoping to achieve for your space.  The art you choose should complement the design.  It should be noticeable but not distracting.

Let’s say for example you have a restaurant with a modern look and vibrant tones and you want a lively atmosphere from your guests.  You wouldn’t want to hang something on the wall with subtle, muted tones or it would disappear into the background.  In this kind of environment you want your customers focussed on the food they’re eating and the conversation they are having with each other but to also notice your chosen art work.  It may even become the subject of their conversation, helping to make your restaurant memorable for more than just the food.

Consider the Subject

Choosing the right artwork to complement your space goes a little deeper than the colours.  It’s equally important to consider how the subject is composed.  For example, if you’re hanging portraits, is the subject’s expression conveying the sense of emotion you want your customers or employees to feel?  

Did you know that the shapes formed in a piece of art can also have an impact on how it makes us feel?  As I’m a landscape photographer I will use some examples of my own work to illustrate what I mean.

The composition of Old Harry’s Rocks form a circle in the image below and circles are proven to have a calming effect on the viewer.  So this would work well in a hotel or cafe as you want your customers to feel relaxed.


Conversely, if you are looking to give the viewer a sense of energy and confidence, images that contain triangles are proven to give the viewer a feeling of dynamism.  This would be useful in an office space for example where you want your staff to feel motivated.  The rocks ledges in this image form a series of triangles and are a good example of this point.  The motion in the waves add to the energy in this scene.


I hope this article has given you a useful insight into helping you with your next interior design project.  If you’d like to have a landscape photographer work with your interior design team or help you choose wall art to complement your space please drop me an email to or call me on 07928840034.  My name’s Owen by the way!

Thanks for reading.

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