Decorate Your Workplace With These Office Artwork Ideas

Canvas, Photography, Prints and other Fine Art

You'd be surprised at what a little office artwork can do to any office or cubicle. Say goodbye to boring walls and sterile decor and try some of these easy Office Artwork Ideas.

How can you expect to work at your maximum potential if your office looks more like a mausoleum than a creative, efficient and stimulating environment? Or better yet, how can you impress coworkers, interviewees or anyone else if it looks like you're working out of a bomb shelter?

It's unfortunate, but many people fail to realize just how important a stimulating decor is to job performance. Regardless of what your job title is - or even where you work - adding some workplace art can do wonders for your job performance, focus, efficiency and, perhaps most importantly, you'll feel better while working. Plain walls and bland schemes would suck the life out of the most creative personalities in history, yet most people work in offices and cubicles that look more like cellars than workplaces. So let's change that.

Types Of Office Artwork

Your choices are limited only by your imagination, but the appropriateness might be limited by your employee handbook; so it's a good idea to read through your employment contract and speak with your supervisor before dropping your hard-earned money on some beautiful office artwork.

That said, here are several office artwork ideas that are sure to jazz up your workplace:

Photography. In the world of office artwork, photography is perhaps the most sought-after, especially if the prints themselves are original. There is no limit to size, as even the world's best designers disagree on the "one big photography vs several smaller photographs" debate. So I'll leave that up to you. But the point is that a killer photo mounted on your wall can really make your place of work stand out. Tip: Family photos don't count. Okay, they count in terms of emotional attachment, but not in terms of creativity. Try to find something unique, perhaps taken from an obscure perspective or of an odd subject. Original photography is king, but reproduction prints are just as good (and they are cheap, and cheap office artwork is never a bad thing).

Canvas Paintings. Some people prefer photos, but others choose paintings. If you're in the latter category, then by all means get out there and hang some office paintings up! There are as many styles as there are painters, so you're sure to find something that tickles your fancy - ranging from lifelike representations to the most abstract office paintings you've ever seen. Some people prefer still life, others like landscapes... the possibilities are endless.

Posters. Office artwork posters are another very popular option, and for good reason. They are often cheaper than photos and paintings, but still add some sparkle to your place of employment. There are no steadfast rules, simply find something you like and throw it up. But if you're looking for classy office artwork, don't think posters are out of the question. Posters have become collectors items over the years, so a "classic poster" can look just as classy as anything else, especially if you mount them in nice poster frames. For instance, one of the most successful businessmen I know has an old World War II propaganda poster (Rosie the Riveter) in his multimillion dollar office, and it gets more attention than anything else he's got - and he's got items that cost tens of thousands of dollars! Just something to think about.

Sculptures. Who says office art must hang on a wall? An office sculpture makes a great center point of any design scheme, and is sure to keep your creative juices flowing. You can find office sculptures in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, from small lifelike figurines to large, abstract impressionist pieces - and everything in between. But you'll probably want to check with your boss before picking up a replica of the Statue of David, just fair warning.

Office Artwork Glass Panels and Art Frames. Once you've got some great art on the walls, take every precaution to protect it. That starts with a glass panel to protect your print from scratches, tears and even bumps. And a great office art frame will hold everything together and add an element of class on its own. Ever wonder why art frames sometimes cost more than the art that's inside them? That's because they must look good but also serve a utilitarian purpose: Protecting your stuff! Personally, I'm not a huge fan of forking over big bucks for frames and glass, so I buy most of my stuff at Wal-Mart for $10 to $30, depending on the size. But if you want to get fancy, a custom frame shop can hook you up with some exquisite office art frames, but be prepared to pay the price.

Motivational Office Artwork. Personally, I think motivational office artwork is corny, cliche and demoralizing, but the stuff sells off the shelves like crazy, so somebody likes it. It's my guess that the largest buyers are bosses and managers, who think that such lame quotes as "There Is No 'I' In Team" makes people work harder underneath them. These kind of posters make me want to claw my eyeballs out with a dull fork, and my thoughts are likely shared by subordinates throughout the world. So my tip for office managers: Please don't buy motivational office artwork.

Anti Motivational Office Artwork. Contrary to the previous category, anti motivational office artwork rocks. I especially enjoy "Failure: When Your Best Just Isn't Good Enough." You can find a giant variety of these at

Don't Forget Office Furniture! While most people don't consider furniture "art," some non-traditional chairs, tables and desks can really up the ante in terms of artistic integrity. I've seen a handful of crazy looking office chairs that would make even the most seasoned sculptor scratch his head. So don't fall into the trap that office artwork must hang on your wall, think outside the box a little bit and you'll always figure out a way to create an exciting office workplace.