For artists, pricing their work can be a daunting task. 

Not only is it hard to put an assigned value on something that you have poured your heart and soul into, but it can also be a complicated process. 

In this beginners guide, we’re giving you an introduction as to how to properly price your artwork so that you can get paid to continue producing. 

Are you ready to get selling? 

Then let’s get started! 

Compare Yourself to the Market 

While you shouldn’t compare the intrinsic value of your art as compared to other artists, understanding the market value of your work is important to price your art. 

Unfortunately, your art does not exist in a vacuum space where you can assign a price purely based on your own skill. 

Art valuation is dependent on similar works, whether that’s entirely fair or not. 

Naturally, this can be difficult to accept. But it can also be highly instructional. 

Start coming up with pricing models for your art by comparing the price tags of artists that you believe produce similar work as you. 

Be realistic in your comparisons. If you’re a novice, compare yourself to novices. While you may believe your work resembles Dali, that doesn’t mean you have the same clout. 

What Market Are You Participating In? 

To correctly price your art, considering who you are selling to is just as important as the seller themselves (you). 

Are you trying to stay local? 

Are you reaching a larger audience through social media

Or maybe you’d like to apply to sell at a reputable online marketplace that is dedicated to selling outstanding, original works from up and coming artists like you.

Local coffee shops are going to pay less for your work than an art buyer across the country. 

However, selling local to public spaces can increase exposure and get your name circling in the local art community. 

Sometimes, it’s not all about the money. There is real value in getting exposure and selling to individuals who are willing to spread your name for free. 

Low or High: Where to Start Pricing 

There are two schools of thought when it comes to pricing your work: you can come in low to attract more customers, or high to create a sense of prestige. 

Know that you aren’t going to sell your photography prints for hundreds of dollars right off the bat. For less labour-intensive works, starting out at a lower price point is generally going to serve you better in receiving customers testimonials, gaining a following, and more. 

If you work to create large paintings or sculptures, on the other hand, you might not want to price your pieces significantly lower than your peers, as buyers might not take you as seriously. 

Although it’s harder to recognize, the art market is just that—a market. It’s like buying toothpaste at the grocery store. There are generic brands and there are name brands, and companies have to compete against each other to get customers to buy. 

Labor Cost and Materials Considerations 

You should never sell a piece of art for less than the cost it required for you to complete it. 

So what does this mean? 

Price your art so that you are reimbursed for materials at a minimum. 

Additionally, you should attempt to pay yourself somewhat of an hourly wage. If you’re a beginning artist, start out with minimum wage and work your way up as you sell more. 

Note that you’re not likely to make huge profits off of your art as you start out on your journey. 

Price your art so that you repay yourself for materials, and give yourself an opportunity to buy more materials (to produce more, better art in the future)!

Conclusions 

Pricing your artwork can be confusing at first, as there is an emotional stake that just isn’t present in many other markets. 

We hope this guide has been helpful in giving you some ideas as to how to start pricing your artwork. 

Looking for a platform that goes to work for you? 

Gallerima is an awesome online marketplace that is looking for up-and-coming artists like you to sell your work in our thriving community. 

Apply as a seller today to tell your unique story, reach a global audience, and join a thriving community of like-minded artists. 

We’re excited to hear from you!