Thank you for visiting Artinsight
Don't forget to bookmark this site and check in periodically. We will be changing the paintings and adding new work on a random, but continual basis. Don't miss the opportunity to find the perfect work of art for yourself or a loved one. Or, just stop by to see what's new!
If you would like more information, please refer to our section of Frequently Asked Questions, which explains how to purchase paintings and answers questions about the site, the artwork and its translation into digital media, and information about other services such as commissioned paintings and illustrations.
If after reading this FAQ section, you are still unable to find an answer to your question(s), feel free to contact us via e-mail:
We will "e-reply" as soon as possible.
We encourage your response and appreciate any comments or suggestions you may have.
Or if you prefer, you can contact the artist directly via e-mail:
Finally, if you experience technical or mechanical problems with this site, please let our site administrator know, so that the necessary repairs can be made.
KEEP READING ON FOR THE FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Home Gallery Directory Links Services Artist Statement Exhibition List
© 1999-2009 by Michael Cook / FeverDream Productions
(Continue scrolling along for the FAQs below)
The following items are intended to answer most questions. They are listed here by topic, and answered below in a Q and A format. You can either link through to the subject of your choice using the contents list here, or scroll through the information below
if you're really adventurous.(Be advised, it's quite a lengthy document.) If you don't find the information you need here,
contact us at the "Artinsight feedback" button (above)
If you're considering a purchase, we recommend that you (at least) scan though this material so that you can have a better idea of who we are, and how we do things.
Q: How often will the artwork at this site be changed?
New paintings will appear on a continuing, but random basis as they become available, or as new scans of paintings are ready to be displayed. At the moment, there is a considerable backlog of work we are hoping to eventually exhibit. Each requires scanning, a linking-page enlargement, etc., before it can be uploaded.
However, new and different paintings should be appearing approximately every two- to four weeks--but sprinkled among the ones already being displayed here, as opposed to having entirely new galleries of work changing on a regular basis. We may also be adding one or more completely new galleries of different work onto this site, and possibly additional artists' work as well, in the future. It is all in an evolving state. So, to keep abreast of our "shows" please bookmark this site and check in frequently to view new work. It will change, but in an ongoing process of replacement and substitution, rather than completely different exhibitions every month or two. Hey, we're not CNN!
This also means that if you see a painting you like and are interested in purchasing, it is important to contact us right away, because there's really no way to know how long any particular piece will be available.
It is imperative to us that we maintain a high level of quality and variety within the consistent spirit of the art you see here, and we will be doing our best to ensure that these standards are always met, and collector satisfaction is always a top priority.
Q: How do the actual paintings differ from what I see on my computer?
It depends mostly on the quality and resolution of your computer monitor itself, but we can say without hesitation that the actual paintings are remarkably superior to any reproduction available with present-day computer technology on the Internet. That's good and bad. While it's difficult to portray them exactly as the artist intended, these are a good approximation of what the paintings look like, and are capable of giving you a pretty good sense of them. However, the actual paintings still look a lot better, so if you can visualize them clearer and crisper, yet softer (with smoother graduations) and with more subtlety than they appear here, you'll get the idea.
It's important to realize that most computer monitors reproduce images at a resolution of about 72 dots per inch (dpi). For this reason, the original paintings here have been scanned in at 72 dpi, then professionally color-corrected and contrast-adjusted, etc., to match the actual paintings as closely as possible. Therefore, you can be assured that a lot of work has already gone into matching the paintings as accurately as possible to the original art.
Now for the bad news:
Images at 72 dpi result in a pretty mediocre quality. They are fuzzy, grainy, ("digitized"), and generally just fall short of the strength and delicacy of the originals. We could scan them in at higher resolutions for a clearer image, but because of all the different computers, monitors and modems out there connecting to the Internet from all over the world, it calls for a rather low common denominator--the 72 dpi scan--to keep everyone reasonably happy--and tuned in! You see, in order for the images to look better, say, even "100-dpi better," it would take nearly twice as long to download each image. We know some of you out there are "surffering" along the World Wide Web at about 23 miles per hour (or 14.4kbps) already, and if it takes you 5 minutes of staring blankly at a flickering screen in order to get a single page downloaded, you'll be off to another site before the tea kettle whistles. So we've opted for a middle ground--a balance between decent (not great) reproduction quality, that will allow decent (not forever) download times. Given the present state of this technology, it's hard to please everyone.That's just the way it is. We are considering including some "secondary" enlargements of a few selected paintings which would be larger and much clearer, for those with fast modems and great monitors. These could be beautiful if you had the appropriate equipment, or if you were willing to wait. Overall, we feel that we've struck a reasonable balance: providing images that can give you good idea of what the paintings look like, without taking all weekend to arrive onscreen.
The other factor is color itself. Different platforms (PC, Macintosh, etc.) have different ways of interpreting the colors they receive from the server over the Internet. So their palettes are slightly different. This affects the color balance of the paintings, but not tremendously. The number of colors (depth bit) plays a bigger role: how smooth the graduations are from one color to the next, as well as the richness (saturation) and chromatic range. Again, we have opted for the "common denominator" standard of 8-bit (256 colors), because it is still the most popular among general computer users. Many--if not most--people don't have monitors that can support 32-bit color at this time, and the human eye can't really even distinguish 16.7 million colors (much less billions!)--so all these folks wouldn't get any advantage out of it. They'd just be waiting longer to download them--about 700 percent longer! Since these paintings have very subtle graduations of color and tone, the images are certainly enhanced by a greater color depth, but it may be at the expense of alienating most viewers.
The bottom line is that if it takes too long to see the images, viewers will move on to something else--in which case the paintings will never be seen by them at all. We don't want that, but we apologize if you've just re-mortgaged your house for some state-of-the-art equipment. Again, these things (16-bit color scans) may be added to the site later on as an option.
Despite all this, it's still miraculous that we're able to send a pretty accurate digital image over a telephone wire to all corners of this planet, and have it appear on a computer in your home or office seconds later. But take a look for yourself; let us know what you think. There are, of course, other ways to get high quality images to you if necessary. They're just not this fast and easy. Let us know. . . .
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Q: Are the paintings framed?
Rarely, if ever. The reasons for this are numerous. While you can select a painting from us that you'll love living with, you might not be thrilled living with the frame that's attached to it--especially if that frame seriously increased the cost of the painting.
We are in the business of providing our clientele with fine quality, significant art. We don't want to sideline as a framing business. Although thousands of other people are in that business, including some right in your area, regardless of where you live. (We can practically guarantee it.) The difference is that you can go in there and choose which frame you want, and have it custom made for you. So you get exactly what you want, you didn't have to pay for two frames, and everybody is happy!
We are always glad to offer advice on the framing options and needs of different media, or even ideas (our opinions) for framing a particular painting. We want you to enjoy the work and display it to its best advantage, and understand how to protect it in such a way that it will still be around for your great-great-great-grandchildren!
Another reason we don't frame the artwork is that paintings with frames (especially those in glass, which all watercolors and pastels must be) are much more vulnerable to damage in transit than those without frames. Plexiglas is sometimes chosen as a way around this, but there are definite visual disadvantages to it. While it may not break, it scratches very easily, compounding the distortions and reflective problems. Besides, it does nothing to ensure that the frame arrives at its destination in one piece, either. We have a strong and reliable packing system for shipping that minimizes cost, yet ensures that the art arrives safely.
Q: How do you arrive at the prices for the paintings?
The artist responds:
These are the prices I have established over a period of many years of selling paintings, based on the value I place on my work, the amount of time required for each piece, and the prices I have come to expect they will sell for. Perhaps the only truly arbitrary factor is how much I happen to like a particular piece--how much I, as the artist, feel it is worth. It's all relative. While some people may find these prices high (in their own concept of what things should cost), other people will realize that they are actually quite a good value for the quality and expertise they represent. Needless to say, the prices have risen over the years, as has everything else. These prices are just the monetary value I attach to them. Keep in mind that it has taken me a tremendous amount of time and expense (not to mention the education) to get to this level of experience, this point of ability. I began painting when I was about five years old, and began selling paintings when I was about 16. Despite all those years, and all those paintings over the years, I've also had to work at a lot of other jobs to make a living--in order to support my "habit" of painting. Many, if not most of these jobs have paid better than being an artist, but for me there's no comparison in terms of creative satisfaction.
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Q: How do I go about purchasing a painting?
It's really quite easy! Just send us an e-mail message indicating which painting(s) you'd like. Please refer to paintings by title. We will send you an e-mail response confirming your order and answering any other questions you may have. At this time we do not accept credit cards. The way we conduct transactions is simply to have you send a check for your purchase. (Personal checks are okay.) After your check has been received, deposited, and credited by our bank, we send the painting to you via Federal Express (insured, of course). Paintings are usually sent out within a day of your check's clearance. (If you're in a hurry, we can work with you: we also accept postal money orders and bank cashier's checks, which eliminates the check-posting delay.)
Note that there is no sales tax on Internet transactions, but we do require a nominal $25.00 charge per painting (in the continental U.S.), which barely covers shipping and insurance costs.
We realize that this kind of a transaction requires a certain measure of faith on your part. Fear not! For every SPM (scam-per-minute) operation out on the Internet, there are hundreds of thousands of sincere people like us conducting legitimate business, finding a way to bridge the geography of this planet, bringing something beautiful and meaningful (like art connections!) together in a venue that couldn't even be imagined ten years ago.That, to us, represents a serious responsibility, and we're not about to mess with the free exchange of a whole new dimension of commerce for the sake of making a fast buck, or jeopardize our legitimacy, reputation, and your trust--for unethical means. After looking over this site you must concede that if we were setting out to rip off unsuspecting innocents, we could certainly come up with easier and more effective ways to go about it!
If you're still uneasy--or just plain paranoid--keep in mind that, in the course of getting to know you somewhat via e-mail communications, we will be providing a street address (and of course, will be requiring the same from you, so that we'll have a delivery address for the painting). No post office boxes. Phone numbers are optional, but may be helpful, too.
Finally, if you still have doubts, we've even developed a system whereby you can minimize your risk: Send a check for 1/3 down payment, along with the necessary information, and we will send the painting C.O.D. for the remaining balance.This, however, requires that you be available at the address stipulated when the painting arrives, so that a certified bank check for the balance can be collected by the delivery agent. This requires some communication.
Other notes and considerations
- Since we want everyone to be pleased with the paintings they order from us, it's worth taking a minute to ensure you're aware of a few things: Nearly all of the paintings represented here at this time are small. So that you have a good sense of scale yourself, we recommend measuring out and marking the dimensions of the painting you're interested in, on a blank sheet of paper. That way, you'll have a good visual reference for the size of the actual painting.The paintings shown here have a lot of "presence," and can erroneously give the impression of being larger than they actually are. We strongly recommend matting the paintings with a four- or five-inch minimum border all around, to enhance the art. Double mats are preferable, since they not only look better, but protect the art from contact with the glass. For this reason, double mats should always be used for pastel paintings, and if you must use plexiglass to frame them, we recommend using triple mats because of the inherent static charge from plexiglass. Acid-free, or at least neutral pH rag mats are the best choice, since they offer the greatest protection for the art's longevity. Your framer can provide other guidelines, or we will be happy to offer other framing suggestions. Keep in mind that all watercolor and pastel paintings must be framed under glass for their protection.
- It's important to us to make some kind of "personal" connection with our collectors, even if only through e-mail correspondence.This is one reason why we don't just have you enter a Visa number, and check off "items" on a form. It may be slightly less convenient, but we feel it is a less anonymous, more humane way to conduct business. That's just our philosophy. Thank you for your understanding.
Q: Can I commission a painting?
Absolutely. The artist is receptive to such possibilities, but you would need to arrange it with him. If, based on the look, feeling, and subject matter of the images presented here, you feel he would be appropriate for a painting you'd like to commission, by all means contact him to discuss it. Click the "Artist e-mail" button (above, on this page) to send a message directly to him.
Q: What about illustration work?
The artist has created numerous illustrations, and welcomes new inquiries regarding illustration work. If you feel any of these images would be appropriate for illustrations, or if, based on the artist's "look," you are interested in commissioning illustrations, please contact the artist to discuss the possibilities. Click the "Artist e-mail" button on this page to connect to the artist. (Please note that all images appearing here are copyrighted and cannot be used for any purpose without permission.)
Q: Does this artist paint other subjects not shown here?
Yes. Although these represent a good cross-section of the artist's oeuvre, other paintings occasionally depict different subjects such as cityscapes, sometimes with incidental figures. Other types of work not represented here include semi-abstract landscapes. We hope to include some examples of both variations in future exhibitions at this site.
Q: Will other artists' work be shown on this site?
We hope to do so eventually, but do not have a timetable for that to occur. Presently, we are not soliciting or reviewing other artists' work. There seems to be no shortage of other artists' work we would like to include, so stay tuned; you may be surprised at what develops. Our primary concern is to maintain the high quality of work and expand our viewing exposure, which will serve future artists and the public better. Help us spread the word! If you like what you see here, tell others.
Q: Can I link my web site to this site?
Of course. It's the World Wide Web! You're welcome to link your site to any other site you choose, and in fact, we encourage you to link with this site. If you do connect your home page or site to Artinsight, we would appreciate your letting us know. Reciprocal links are another matter though, and we haven't established a formal policy on them yet. For the time being, we're trying to keep it simple and not offer external links from here, but that may change. Such things will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. If you have a site you feel would be an appropriate link, it can't hurt to contact us and provide the URL, so that we can check it out.
Q: Can I use these images on my site?
No. Sorry, but all images, titles, text, logos and design elements are copyrighted, and cannot be used by anyone else--on another web site, nor for any other purpose--without specific written permission. This is done to protect the rights of the artist from illegal usage of his images, and to ensure that the artist maintains control over the reproduction of his work. Since we're on the subject, it's important to note that the artist also retains this international copyright on works that are sold, so even if you were to buy the original painting, you are not automatically granted the right to reproduce copies, or other uses of it. These reproduction rights are negotiated and sold separately.This is simply a matter of common practice in the industry.
Q: Is this artist's work available for exhibition in other galleries?
Since the artist continues to exhibit work in many other places and venues, these paintings or other works by the artist may find their way into other galleries, but it is being offered here as a comprehensive collection of changing work specifically as an Internet gallery format, in direct affiliation with the artist. Galleries who wish to exhibit the artist's work are encouraged to contact us, or the artist, if they feel they have a viable secondary market for the work. In other words, these paintings will not be consigned to galleries where they would be offered at retail prices less than those indicated here. This policy protects the collector, the artist, and the integrity of the price structure. If galleries choose to purchase work from us and offer it at their establishments (for resale) they would certainly have that option, because at that point they would be the owners of the work, and as such would be free to do whatever they wish. The artist may be receptive to consigning work to a particular gallery, but that would need to be arranged with the artist. We have no exclusivity contract with the artist. However, protective agreements do prevent these paintings from being offered anywhere else at a retail price that would be less than those indicated here.
Q: Where can I get more information on this artist?
If you've read the artist statement and exhibition list and would like further information, simply contact the artist directly at the "Artist--e-mail" button above.
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Home Gallery Directory Links Services Artist Statement Exhibition List
© 19992009 by Michael Cook / Feverdream Productions
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