Looking to add some personality and style to your home decor? There’s no need to spend a fortune on art prints. There are many websites that offer free art downloads, from classic paintings to modern illustrations. In this blog post, we’ll share some of our favorite sources for free art, as well as tips on how to print and frame your finds.
How to Find Free Art
OK, I’m going to let you in on a little-known way to find really beautiful artwork that won’t cost you a dime!! You do need to print it yourself though.
SO many pieces of art are considered public domain (open source) and are available for you to download for free but need to know where to look.
This post may include affiliate links; you can read my disclosure policy here.
National Gallery of Art
You will find an enormous collection of artwork on the National Gallery of Art. You can search through the collection (there are thousands!) and my advice is to narrow down the search categories to the style of artwork you are searching for.
I like to search through Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings.
For my kitchen, I wanted to add a small piece of artwork to add a pop of color near my sink area. I picked Renoir’s “Peaches on a Plate”.
One trick that I love to use for my DIY artwork is to use cotton canvas printer sheets to give the artwork an authentic look.
Remember that printer sheets are 8 1/2 x 11 so are larger than an 8 x10 frame. Just make sure you adjust your printer picture settings to the proper size of what you want to print..everyone’s printers are different so you will have to figure this part out on your own.
Another option if you don’t have a home printer is to go to Staples and have them print it out for you.
After I printed out the Peaches picture I used spray adhesive to attach it to a wood frame that I had in my craft stash.
Another still life painting that I loved for my kitchen was this Manet “Pears”
If you don’t have a computer to download the images to you can save them to your phone’s camera roll and print them from there too.
I screenshotted some of the pages so I could remember the artist and name of the paintings.
Other Sources For Free Artwork
Here are a few other places where you can download open-source artwork that are in the public domain for free. You will have to do some clicking through the images to find what you like. There are so many beautiful pieces of artwork available.
- Wikimedia Commons (that’s the impressionist section)
- The Metropolitan Museum of Art
- The Art Institute of Chicago
- The Cleveland Museum of Art
- Boston Museum of Fine Arts
Easy Artwork Project Idea
Another project that I did was to upcycle an old picture that I had. This one was pulled from my Fall storage bin…I can’t even remember the last time that I displayed it!!
This time I printed out the image on a sheet of watercolor paper which is textured.
Because the sheet of watercolor paper is larger than a sheet of copy paper I needed to trim off the excess so it would go through the copy machine.
Then I had to trim around the edges to fit in the picture frame that I am going to use today.
For this picture upcycle I am going to use Mod Podge to adhere the picture to the frame and Rub ‘n Buff to give the frame a different look.
Rub ‘n Buff works like magic!! It takes just a few seconds to completely change the look of something and you only need a tiny dab to do it!!
Using a sponge brush I covered the old picture with Mod Podge to adhere the print to it. Another option would be to use a spray adhesive.
The Graphics Fairy
The Graphics Fairy website has thousands of free images and clipart available to you. If you are looking for vintage-looking artwork this is your place!
For Fall, I printed out this vintage-looking mushroom painting. to use in my entryway.
I tucked it into the back pocket of an old picnic basket that I had styled with lots of Fall items. I decorated my entryway with lots of thrifted and vintage items.
Last Christmas, I printed out 9 different vintage Santa and Christmas images from The Graphics Fairy and made a gallery wall in my kitchen. Take a tour of my green & red Christmas kitchen here.
Free Botanical Prints
This is a reader favorite on Cottage on Bunker Hill! How about creating a botanical gallery wall??
There is no need to pay for botanical print downloads on Etsy, seriously!! You can find hundreds of pretty options for free on Botanicus.org.
You will need to scroll down the column on the left side of the page until you see “plate” instead of “text” and that will be the botanical images.
If you want to save some time just go to my Botanical Print Gallery Wall and I have a curated group of the images already in a folder for you to download.
Check out my art library for more free artwork to download!
Fine Art DIY Gallery Wall Idea
Since I first wrote this article I’ve done another big project using open source artwork that I had printed. I created a large gallery wall in my living room.
I’ve added most of the artwork seen here and many others to create a collection of 29 art prints that are an email subscriber exclusive. If you are interested just click the button below and you will have instant access to my private library.
Fine Art Printables
29 Free Downloads
exclusively for email subscribers
Where to Print Large Artwork
When I did my big gallery wall I had all of the prints done at Shutterfly. (Bonus, If you are a Costco member go to the Costco website or app and click on photo services and they have partnered with Shutterfly and you get 51% off & free shipping)
Mpix is also another popular website for your printing needs.
So instead of thinking that you have to run out and buy new artwork for your home try doing it on your own and saving some money too!!
Plus you will have so many more options to curate your own style for your home.
Thrifty style team
For this month’s Thrifty Style Team we all have great decorating ideas and DIYs for our readers! Every month a group of my blogging friends organized by Julie of Redhead Can Decorate come together to share thrifty and budget-friendly decorating ideas with you. At the end of my post, you will see what everyone else is sharing today.
Redhead Can Decorate –Cozy Fall Corner
Our Crafty Mom –Ghost Mug Pottery Barn Dupe
I Should Be Mopping the Floor – Fall Simmer Pot Recipe
The How to Home –Dollar Store Halloween Apothecary Jars
DIY Beautify –Anthro Minka Pot Dupe for Under $5
2 Bees in a Pod –Olive Topiary Ballard’s Dupe
The Tattered Pew –Simple DIY Halloween Ghost Pillow
My Family Thyme – How to Make a Dried Hydrangea Wreath
Amy Sadler Designs –Felt Bookmark with Embroidered Initial
Songbird –Decorating Lanterns for Fall