It’s always a dilemma in the beginning because if you under price your work people will think your work is worthless but if you over price you may never sell your work. Following are some methods to consider when deciding on the value of your painting.
- The easiest approach is to price all work by the size of canvas regardless of the time or materials cost. To arrive at the price check out local artwork comparable to your own and use that as a guideline. There are plenty of artists online as well as art galleries so this research should be readily available. One rule of thumb has always been to see what the local market will bear. This will change from area to area. For example, a painting will sell for more in Toronto than it would in Hamilton.
- To recover your costs you may add up all the materials that went into the painting and add your labor (time) plus a profit margin although your time could suffice as a profit margin. This method may lead people to ask why two paintings of the same size are priced differently. Generally speaking people don’t care how long it look you; they will think that the higher priced painting is too expensive.
- Decide on a per square inch price or centimeter and apply that to all your paintings. This actually is not a bad method to use because you can figure in your time and materials and people will likely accept this since paintings are still priced by size.
- Price your work according to style as well as size with realism being more expensive that say abstract. Again, this method gets into the time it took to produce which I believe people have a hard time accepting. Or perhaps abstract is more popular and more expensive.
As a member of the Women’s Art Association, I have to compare my work to that of the other artists in the group since we often exhibit together. These ladies range in talent from well know local artists to new hobbyist. We also work in different mediums and size of canvas so I aim to have my prices somewhere in the lower to middle of this group.