5 Practical Tips for Pricing Your Artwork
Imagine you are in an art fair. Your artwork caught a potential buyer’s attention. You talked a bit and the buyer got more interested. Soon the question popped up, “how much is your art’s price?” You can’t afford to go blank and do the math then and there.
As an artist, you have spent thousands of hours honing your skills. You could even make a decent artwork with a blindfold on. You are a pro when it comes to your craft since you have loved it and poured so much dedication. Then, after all the finishing touches, you will face the hardest struggle an artist could face – pricing.
Money talk can be awkward whether with family or with strangers. And pricing an artwork is no different. How can you correctly put a value on something too unique and personal especially if you are just starting up your career? As an artist, you want (and need) to make sales, but you also don’t want to sell yourself short. Here are some tips if you have no experience with pricing your art yet.
Research on Comparable Artwork
Since you are a budding artist in your chosen medium and style, you have to know how much the other artists are pricing for their own work. Though you can consider your art unique, chances are someone has a similar style to yours.
Go online and start your search. Find out how much they charge for their work and the pattern they use with their pricing. This will give you an idea on where to start. Make sure that you are making an honest self-evaluation and compare your work to those who have very similar styles, mediums, experience, and of course, geographical location.
The next time you go to a conference or a dinner party with other artists, ask for their pricing tips too. Ask them why they have that pricing style or tip.
Don’t Undersell Yourself
Anyone who works hard and gets underpaid is bound to burn out.
Creating your art is not cheap at all. You have invested time, effort, and expensive materials on it. If you are one of the paper sculpture artists, you sure have invested in high-quality paper, glue, and right tools to create the best artwork. Needless to say, you still have to make a living after all the costs have been deducted.
According to the United States Department of Labor, a fine artist can charge an hourly rate of $24.58. Be diligent when noting your work hours when creating artwork.
While you are personally attached to your artwork, you have to remain objective when pricing. Let go of your emotions if the artwork holds a sentimental value. Approach your pricing as if you are doing it to another person’s work. Some artists use a sizing formula. They allocate a certain value per square inch – Square Inch × Dollar Amount. You can start off with $2 per square inch if you are selling in an art fair.
Create Artworks Within Range
Some buyers can afford $4,000 while others would love your artwork but can only afford $300. Entertain those with a lower budget too. Once they already have more budget, they will come back to make another purchase.
Print is one of the best ways to cater to them. Though it is not an original work, they can still take home a piece of your art. More people will see your work too and will talk about your work.
If someone asks if your price seems expensive, you need to be prepared to defend it. Show that your art is unique and one of a kind. Show evidence that other people have made similar purchases and that they value your artwork. This goes back to the first tip, you need to be honet with your self-evaluation to convince your buyers taht you are worth every cent.