Is Collecting Art a Hobby?


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Many people are looking for new hobbies that are more home-centric since the Covid pandemic made social distancing a must and many corporations have shifted to a work-from-home policy, so how about art collecting as a hobby?

In this article, we’ll explore the hobby of art collecting and how it can be even more. We’ll discuss the culture of art collecting and how it has changed recently with technology and apps coming into play.

We’ll also look at how one person’s hobby can positively impact others in their orbit. Ever have dinner at friends’ homes? You know you want to go to the art collector’s house and see what’s your art collector friend likes.

We’ll also discuss how art collecting is a hobby that can also potentially be lucrative. Like many hobbies, if done correctly, it can have investment returns. Is an art collector a job? You might consider it.

What’s the Culture of Art Collecting?

As an art collector, you’ll naturally build relationships in the art business that might be drastically different from those that come from your career, neighborhood, other hobbies, etc. Art collectors themselves tend to be classic “Renaissance” people, having broad interests and able to carry a conversation on many topics. To be an art collector, you have to have discretionary money and that typically gets spent on other culture-building expenditures and media as well.

Art collecting typically is a reference to visual media, but art collectors are typically interested in fine art overall and likely to attend cultural events, travel widely, and have a more globalist perspective.

In terms of building culture, art collectors meet each other and others in the art world via gallery events, museum events, and art shows, and in large enough cities, may even live in the more “artsy districts.” Art collectors like to experience art in their daily routine, seeing murals on the way to the store, for example.

You’ll also find art collectors in online communities, where they can learn from each other, and also from experts such as art appraisers and art buyers who may have access to better networks and research tools.

How Does Art Collecting as a Hobby Impact Others?

Even hobby art collectors create a positive impact on those around them. An art collector’s home is naturally intellectually and visually stimulating for children, who are likely to become art collectors themselves. Their homes will also naturally become preferred meeting places for dinner events in the neighborhood.

From an economic perspective, art collectors support artists via their purchases. Whether buying direct or through galleries representing the artist, the purchase is revenue to that artist’s art business. For many hobby art collectors, they are buying from the local community so they are part of the broader “buy local” movement.

At a more macro scale, all but the living blue-chip artists (Damien Hirst, Jeff Koons, etc.) would be considered small businesses. The art ecosystem is rather small in comparison to many single corporations such as Meta, Nike, or even Ikea. Putting discretionary money into art as opposed to throwaway purchases like clothes, low-quality furniture, or depreciating automobiles directly supports the art ecosystem.

Indirectly, art collectors are great ambassadors for others in their network to become art collectors. In social media terms, you become an “influencer” supporting the artists that you have purchased.

Is an Art Collecting Hobby Potentially Lucrative?

Great news! Art collecting, like many hobbies, can generate revenue or be a “side hustle” if you don’t want to dive into it as your full-time reason for being. You get to choose who you buy, and if you continue to do your homework, such as reading other articles in our Art Collector’s Guide series, you’ll learn how to identify pieces with appreciation potential.

Much like stocks, bonds, real estate, or even cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, if you buy low, you have the potential to sell high. You can track the value of blue chip stocks online as there are firms, that specialize in compiling that data in the same way.

You’ll also find that investing in art is a good hedge against inflation. US Citizens may consider a new art collecting hobby as a diversification strategy in their overall investment portfolio. Mitt Romney has also recently stated publicly that he believes it’s an asset class that would be tax-advantaged if the US adopts a so-called “Rich Tax.”


We’re glad you’re considering art collecting as a hobby. It can be so much fun and has many advantages over hobbies that you might consider. You’ll have an amazing living space, get to add interesting people to your network, be a better entertainer to your existing network, and be supporting your local community while preserving history.

If you think it’s the right hobby for you, you’ll find fantastic resources here at ETChster.

When you sign up, you have access to our lite art collector app, which allows you to create Etchings (NFT-alternative for tangible art) for up to 100 works of art. You get to network with other art collectors in the community. You’ll have access to buy directly from artists in your community but also globally, so you can add works to your collection from any genre or location you like.

You also have access to ETChster University’s art collector resources: our Art Collector’s Guide and articles like this on various subtopics.

Lastly, you are welcome to reach out to our team, who can help introduce you to art appraisers and others when the time is right.

So what are you waiting for? Make it official that art collecting is your new hobby today.

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Eddie Davis

Back in 2018, Eddie decided there had to be a better way. He a baby on the way and a house full of original art from his ancestors. So he started building an art collecting app to catalog each piece and capture its story. And then he started buying (or trying to buy) original art in his home town of Atlanta, Georgia, United States and quickly discovered that nearly all artists had broken, out-of-date websites and made it nearly impossible to buy their work. So he connected his catalog app to a maintenance-free artist website. Somewhere in the middle, crypto NFTs exploded and then imploded, and the ETChster global community grew to ~15,000 artists and art collectors of all walks of life. Et cetera...