In a new blog series, art collectors are sharing their stories about investing in art from Short North Arts District galleries. Read on for a Q&A from a variety of art lovers in Columbus.

SHenry Green VaseWhat is your first or favorite piece in your collection from the Short North?
My first piece was purchased in 1997 from the former Gallery V. It is a silk and calligraphy piece by Doshu Kanayama, a Japanese artist. Today, the majority of my collection is from Sherrie Gallerie.

Second, it’s hard for me to declare a single favorite piece (that’s like saying you have a favorite child). Instead, my collection has pieces that compliment each other.

Some pieces are better when paired — Davide Salvadore looks wonderful when paired with William Ortman; Laine Bachman, Claire Prenton, and Melinda Rosenberg are strong as a group. Of course they are all beautiful individually, but I view it as a collection, not single pieces.

How did you begin your art collection?
When I first moved to Columbus in 1987 I lived in the Short North, and every day I walked past Riley Hawk Galleries. I would window shop, and eventually gathered the courage to go in. Sherrie was so kind and generous with her time, and was willing to educate me about the art and the different techniques used to create the art.

I didn’t consider myself a collector until Sherrie told me I was. I suppose when you reach 50 pieces of art, you are a collector. I just like to surround myself with beautiful things.

What drew you to Sherrie Gallerie?
To me Sherrie Gallerie is synonymous with relationships, trust, quality, knowledge, and breadth of work. Sherrie and Margaret both are extremely knowledgeable about the work they represent. They get to know their clients, exchange and share ideas with them, and maintain an ongoing conversation. I’ve shared work from artists that they didn’t represent, and Sherrie has actually brought them into the gallery. There’s a mutual appreciation for art.

Also, the gallery openings they have allow you to meet the artists, and that experience makes supporting their work more emotional and as a collector, you have a connection with them. Some of Sherrie Gallerie artists are also in museums, which adds value to the work they represent.

What sort of artwork do you love?
Most of my collection is by contemporary artists. I have glass, ceramic, porcelain, wood, metal, water color, acrylic, oil, and ink — some are serious, some abstract, some fun, some satirical.

As a collector, what is special about the galleries in the Short North Arts District?
The current galleries have survived the recession, are experts in their fields, have a wide variety of artists. As with any business, they must build solid relationships with their customers, and have the ability to attract new ones.

In addition to Sherrie Gallerie, I am happy to see that Hammond Harkins Galleries has moved to the Short North Arts District to add to the synergy.

What tips do you have for beginner collectors?
Collecting art will bring joy to your life. Visit galleries often and build relationships. Don’t be afraid to jump in. Buy what you love. Always ask for a red dot (or two) when you are at an opening – there is nothing worst than coming back later and the piece you loved is sold. Some galleries allow their clients to pay in installments, so if you see something you can’t live without, but can’t afford it at the time, then don’t be afraid to ask for this arrangement.