The Greater Columbus Arts Council hosted a panel last winter called "The Art of Collecting" to rev up for the 50th-annual Columbus Arts Festival. We asked panelists Duff Lindsay and Ellen Pizzuti to recall their tips for aspiring collectors.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council hosted a panel last winter called "The Art of Collecting" to rev up for the 50th-annual Columbus Arts Festival. We asked panelists Duff Lindsay and Ellen Pizzuti to recall their tips for aspiring collectors.

1. Expose yourself to as much art as possible. "I think you need to go to everything and you need to look at everything," Pizzuti said. "Museums are cheap or free. Festivals like this are all over the country."

2. Figure out what moves you. "I'm certainly happy to sell somebody a painting just because it's going to match their couch, but frankly it's no fun," Lindsay said. "It's fun working with people who have a vision."

3. Know your price point. Lindsay recommends starting with some less expensive purchases. However, don't be afraid of spending money to match your passion if you can afford it.

"I remember the first piece of art that I ever bought that cost over $1,000," Lindsay said. "I literally thought I had lost my mind. I think my hand was shaking when I wrote the check."

Years later, he doesn't regret it.

"If it happens to be worth more than you paid for it someday, that's just icing on the cake," Lindsay said. "But you already got your good investment."

4. Consider your collection's long-term impact. We shape our art collections, but over time they also shape us.

"It sort of develops who you are and your personality," Pizzuti said. "What you choose to live with is very important."

5. Go with your gut. "You have to trust your gut reaction," Lindsay said. "You have to have an emotional response to the piece. It just has to draw you in and grab you."