What Size of Art to Choose For Interior

What determines the size of paintings on canvas? We tell you how to determine the dimensions of the canvas, considering the area of the room, the convenience of viewing, and the format of the furniture.


The main rule: the larger the room, the larger the picture. A small photo in a spacious room is immediately lost and looks poor. Yes, and a picture of 2×2 meters in a modest standard small studio looks ridiculous, do you agree? Therefore, we maintain harmony.

Approximate guidelines:

small living room 16 m² – painting 60×90 cm;

average living room 20-25 m² – painting 100x120cm;

large living room 30-45 m² – painting 200×120 cm.

Sometimes interior designers neglect this rule. In some cases, a large canvas can decorate a small bedroom or living room. But it is better not to hang it on the wall, but to put it on the floor and lean it. Ideally, such a picture should be light and visually expand the space. For this, landscapes with a horizon line, roads stretching into the distance, window imitation, and so on are usually used.

If the canvas needs to be hung on a narrow wall, calculate the width of this wall. The width of the picture should be approximately ¾ (wall 120 cm – picture 90 cm). If the wall is too narrow, it is better to use a long vertical picture, or several small ones located one below the other.

In small and medium-sized rooms, huge canvases often overload the space and seem “heavy”. In this case, modular paintings come to the rescue: compositions. consisting of several parts. If you already have a favorite painting but it’s too small, pick up a couple of companions. Buy 2 small paintings in a similar style and hang them on the sides.


When choosing a picture, turn your gaze a little lower: examine the object standing on the floor. Designers recommend measuring the width of furniture: a sofa, a chest of drawers, or, for example, a bed. The width of the canvas must be at least ⅓ of the width of the object. If you hang a picture smaller, it will look ridiculous.

What is the ideal wall decor width? Some say – ⅔ of the size of the furniture, others – ¾. Visually, both options look good, just there are individual nuances. If you have a modular picture or a group of photos, this rule also applies. Consider the width of the composition from edge to edge.


Imagine: you have hung a huge picture in the hallway, where you can only step back 1 step. It’s like sitting in the front row at IMAX! To view the giant screen, you have to constantly turn your head. So you can break your neck…

A painting is not only an element of decor, but also an aesthetic object for contemplation. You should comfortably examine the work, fully embracing it with your eyes. Designers recommend: between the viewpoint and the picture, there should be a distance 2 times greater than the height of the canvas. Let’s say a 100×100 cm painting hangs on the wall. This means that you should be able to move away from the canvas by at least 2 meters.

Another important point in determining the distance for viewing: is the technique of execution. For example, impressionist painting, written in large strokes, a priori requires consideration from a greater distance. Multiply the long side of the canvas by 3 – you get the minimum distance from the viewer to the picture.


Each interior is unique and requires an individual approach. If you have calculated the width of the furniture and the area of the wall, pay attention to such points:

Vertical paintings make the ceiling visually higher – this is a great option for tight spaces. But if the ceilings in the room are already so high, long vertical canvases will aggravate the situation: the room will turn into a kind of “well”.

Consider wall decoration. A plain pastel wall without any decor just asks: “Hang a picture on me!”. But this is not always the case. If the wallpaper is embossed, and decorated with a pattern or ornament, then you should be more careful. It is better to hang one minimalist canvas, and not a group of small ones.

The size of the painting depends on the style of the interior. For example, when decorating hi-tech, they usually use one large canvas (usually an abstraction). Provence is a soulful and “cozy” style, which is decorated with a group of small paintings in white or wooden frames.

Consider another wall decor. The picture and lamps should be proportional to each other. Let’s say they act as equal partners. Combine small-sized paintings with unusual decorations: cameras, hats, and decorative plates.

If you have a large empty wall and several paintings of the same size, hang them in an organized group. For example, 4-6-8 pieces are strictly parallel to each other and in two rows.

If you have one large canvas and several smaller ones, place the large one in the center of the composition. Small ones should be on the sides or on top, but not on the bottom.

And now the main life hack: before buying a painting, go to a newsstand. Buy some newspapers and tape them to the wall. Imitate the future canvas and “play around” with the sizes. Take a few steps back and evaluate the composition. Did it work out well? Then measure the newspaper template and order a picture of the appropriate size.

What size should the painting be?

The size of the painting as a gift depends on the occasion and the impression you want to make. If you are giving a simple landscape as a postcard or as an addition to an envelope with money, you can get by with a modest 30×40 cm canvas. Do not be shy about this size, because it is easier to find a place in the house for a small picture! It can be placed on a shelf or bedside table.

The most optimal size of the painting: is 40×60 cm. If you have not been to a person’s apartment, you should not give a larger picture – perhaps there will be no place for it.

Sizes of portraits on canvas as a gift can be larger. A lot more! A gifted portrait of 120×80 cm and larger is appropriate if a person has a spacious apartment. A solid picture will be a full-fledged surprise for a wedding or birthday

LANA Evanova - the artist

2 thoughts on “What Size of Art to Choose For Interior

Comments are closed.