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The Artist and the Car

Updated on December 10, 2014

Finding My Dream Car

Finding the perfect car seemed an impossible task. How do I figure out which car to buy? And how arm I going to finance my new car? It can all be so overwhelming. Since buying a car is such a huge decision, I wanted to get it right.

First, I did a little self-examination, asking myself some questions about what is important for me regarding my car. The list was a checklist that helped me narrow down my choices and find my dream car. I also found an inventive way to help finance a car. Come along for the ride and see how I did it.

"Hamster Car" Winner of Dream Car Contest for Toyota 2001

An Artist and Her Dream Car

My Dodge Dart and My Check List

I'm an artist and I have never been a car person but I am in love with my new Dodge Dart. Before I decided on the Dart, I had made a list of all the things I needed in a car. The Dart gave me all of them and one thing I didn't even know I wanted. Fun!

1) Styling: Like I said I'm an artist and I like to own things that are nice to look at. The Dart styling is beautiful both inside and out. The dashboard is great looking and the RaceTac lights are very cool.

2) Reliability: I paint landscapes on location all over the Southwest, so I am always in search of the perfect painting spot, I will go exploring on dirt roads, private farms and mountain fire roads. I feel safe driving my Dart anywhere. I remember a road between Flagstaff and Zion National Park where I did not see another car, building, or any sign of another human being for three hours. No cell phone either. If you have ever driven that stretch going from Arizona into Utah you understand why reliability is so important to me.

3) Great MPG: I can put a lot of miles on my car in one year so gas mileage is very important and with the Dart I average about 38 MPG. Better on the highway, a little less when I'm on those dirt roads.

4) Comfort: When I compare it to my last car, a Camry, it is much quieter with a smoother ride. The seats are very comfortable, great for my long road trips.

5) Storage Space: My occupation requires a lot of gear. so I need space. The back seat is roomy and the trunk is large enough to fit my frames, paints, canvases, easel, suitcase, cooler and more.

6) Fun Factor: It is fun to drive. Not being a car person, I didn't even have this on my list before driving the Dart. It is something I never even knew I wanted. The Dodge Dart handles everything with great control, hugging the road with sporty confidence. The brakes are strong and the steering responsive.

The car has become a big part of all my adventures.

Accessories for Your New Car

Universal Car Mount Holder (Black) (Latest Cigar Lighter Plug Holder with Dual USB Port, Search ASIN: B00MINMK9G)
Universal Car Mount Holder (Black) (Latest Cigar Lighter Plug Holder with Dual USB Port, Search ASIN: B00MINMK9G)

For my road trips I like to use my phone to research the area, find restaurant and gas stations. This mount makes it easy.

 
HS (12204) Aliens Double-Sided Car Sunshade
HS (12204) Aliens Double-Sided Car Sunshade

Driving through Area 51, everyone should have an alien sunshade for their car.

 
New 14 Pieces Safari Cheetah Print Low Back Front Car Seat Covers, Rear Bench Cover, Seat Belt Covers, Steering Wheel Cover, 4 Pieces Carpet Floor Mats
New 14 Pieces Safari Cheetah Print Low Back Front Car Seat Covers, Rear Bench Cover, Seat Belt Covers, Steering Wheel Cover, 4 Pieces Carpet Floor Mats

Even if you don't drive as much as I do, you'll want to add these seat covers for comfort. I like the Cheetah print too.

 
Car Black Box Kit - Includes Car DVR Camera Recorder with 2.5-Inch Screen and HDMI Out
Car Black Box Kit - Includes Car DVR Camera Recorder with 2.5-Inch Screen and HDMI Out

After seeing the videos of the meteor hitting the ground in Russia, it seems a great idea to have one of these mounted cameras in your car to record those mysterious lights in the sky.

 
AAA 70 Piece Explorer Road Assistance Kit
AAA 70 Piece Explorer Road Assistance Kit

Just in case you run over a nail, it doesn't hurt to be prepared for life's little problems. This kit has everything you may need.

 

Crowdsource Your Dart

Why didn't someone think of this when I got married? That way I could have gotten my Dodge Dart for a wedding present. Now there is a gift registry for friends and family to help you do just that. Chrysler has taken the gift registries for couples getting married, expecting babies or a graduation celebration and crossed it with a social media funding website.

The Dodge Dart Registry at RocketHub lets you customize a new Dart to your specifications and then encourages friends and family to purchase some or all of the cars parts as gifts. Grandma can buy the tires, mom and dad the engine, and Uncle Joe the radio. With fewer young drivers able to buy a car, it's an innovative way to help them purchase a new car and a lot more fun than the obligatory bath towels.

Photo from Dodge Dart Registry

Get What You Want

The Funds You Raise Can be Used to Buy Anything

Here is a list of reasons why this registry idea is the greatest way to finance your car.

1) Convenience: Instead of going to Bed, Bath and Beyond for the better part of an afternoon with an electronic scanner you can do it all on your computer from home.

2) The registry lets you add cool features like dark headlights, dual exhaust, various wheels and even interior options without being limited to any specific trim level.

3) The registry is is all linked to social media so you can share it with everyone.you know, Once registered, you have the option to connect to Facebook and Twitter to spread the word to family and friends about your desire to own a new Dodge Dart.

4) A gift registry ensures they'll be giving a gift that you really want, whether it is for birthdays, graduations or any other gift-giving moments throughout the year

.

5) RocketHub handles the entire crowdfunding process. Funds raised on the registry, minus processing fees, can be used to purchase a new Dodge Dart or any car you want. Yep, that's right, you get a check that you can use for what ever you want.

Purple Stars Rock

WOW

Thank you for my purple star!!!!! I am very excited to get a purple star for my lens The Artist and the Car.

Dodge Dart Stuff

Dodge Dart License Plate Frame (Zinc Metal)
Dodge Dart License Plate Frame (Zinc Metal)

Part of the fun of buying a new car is customizing it so it is unique. I have one of these on my Dart.

 
JADA 1:64 SCALE BIG TIME MUSCLE RED AND BLACK 1969 DODGE DART GTS DIE-CAST REPLICA
JADA 1:64 SCALE BIG TIME MUSCLE RED AND BLACK 1969 DODGE DART GTS DIE-CAST REPLICA

My brother is a car enthusiast who would love this. Maybe the man in your life would too.

 
1968 Dodge Dart Muscle Car-toon No Parking Sign
1968 Dodge Dart Muscle Car-toon No Parking Sign

If you want to stop folks from parking in your space this would be great.

 

Do you drive Your Dream Car or "The Hamster Car" ?

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    • Sharon Weaver profile image
      Author

      Sharon Weaver 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      @Erin Mellor: Why not! I think you can do this with anything. An art project, a charity, even a home as long as there is a good story and people want to help you achieve your goal you can do it with anything.

    • Erin Mellor profile image

      Erin Mellor 4 years ago from Europe

      I'd never heard of the crowdfunding option - what a brilliant idea. I wonder if it would work for a downpayment on a house?

    • Sharon Weaver profile image
      Author

      Sharon Weaver 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      @allaneaglesham lm: Pretty interesting.

    • allaneaglesham lm profile image

      allaneaglesham lm 4 years ago

      Crowd fund a car - what a hoot!!

    • Sharon Weaver profile image
      Author

      Sharon Weaver 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      @RinchenChodron: As far as I know Ford does not have a sponsored registry but I am sure there is a way to make your own registry with a Ford car. The beauty of a registry is that you get the money to use as you like so it could go toward a Ford, a BMW or anything.

    • profile image

      RinchenChodron 4 years ago

      Interesting! Do you know if Ford has a car registry?

    • Sharon Weaver profile image
      Author

      Sharon Weaver 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      @geosum: Thanks. Glad you enjoyed my article.

    • geosum profile image

      geosum 4 years ago

      Great lens. I wish I could be more artistic.

    • Sharon Weaver profile image
      Author

      Sharon Weaver 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      @shewins: You could be right. I'm going to think about that.

    • shewins profile image

      shewins 4 years ago

      I drive something in between. I think this is a great lens. I wonder if the reason it's not getting the attention it deserves is that maybe the title is not searched much. I'm no expert in such matters, but maybe tweaking it a little would help. Maybe "How I chose my car" or "The art of choosing your dream car"