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How much should I charge for my art? If I over-price it, I may not be able to sell anything. If I under-price it, potential buyers may not take me seriously.

There are many things to consider:

  • Price should not be less than your out-of-pocket expenses. Add up your expenses such as paper, paint, mat and frame. Add a reasonable amount for overhead items such as electricity, rent for studio space, or money paid to a model.
  • Price should have some relationship to the time it took you to create it. Keep track of how long it takes you to make a painting, even though as a beginner you may not get much for your time.
  • Price should reflect your level of experience. Where you are in your career as a fine artist has an influence on the prices you can command for your work. So, even if you do believe your art is better than a lot of the stuff you see in galleries, if you're just beginning to sell your work, you need to be realistic about pricing your art.
  • Price should be appropriate for your local market. The geographical location where you sell your art will determine what you can charge. Research your local market to find out what other artists are charging in your area.

Robert Genn's Ten Commandments of Art Pricing

  1. Thous shalt start out cheap.
  2. Thou shalt publish thy prices.
  3. Thous shalt raise thy prices regularly and a little.
  4. Thou shalt not lower thy prices.
  5. Thou shalt not have one price for Sam and another for Joe.
  6. Thou shalt not price by talent or time taken, but by size.
  7. Thou shalt not easily discount thy prices.
  8. Thou shalt lay control on thy agents and dealers.
  9. Thou shalt deal with those who will honour thee.
  10. Thou shalt end up expensive.

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