Putting A Price Tag on Your Magnum Opus

As an artist it can be a challenge earning yourself and your artwork recognition, this can be a daunting task on its own. But once you have established yourself and your style the next step is making it all worthwhile, a.k.a selling your work and actually making a profit.

One of the most important factors concerning selling one’s artwork is pricing. It is easy to set the bar high for yourself but it is also all too common for artists to sell themselves short, resulting in lost time, money and effort, which can become very discouraging.

Obviously if you are an artist you do what you do because you are passionate about it, not because you want to make money. But taking yourself and your work to the next level requires a marriage between this passion and a business-minded approach to pricing your work.

Here are some key tips to consider when deciding how much you think you and your artwork is worth:


1. Materials.

First and foremost, whatever the cost of all materials used in producing any given artwork should be the base for giving it a price tag. Let’s say you spend $60 on all materials for a single piece, start here.


2. Time.

Decide on an hourly wage that you think you deserve, but be realistic. If you haven’t sold anything before, then start low, obviously no lower than minimum wage. Then multiply this number by how many hours you spent working on your piece, plus the cost of materials.

And remember; base this off how much time you spent working on the piece, not how long it took you to complete it. Let’s say your wage is $18/hour and you spent 10 hours working on it, that’s $180.


3. Be competitive.

Now that you have priced your work according to the cost of your materials and the time you have devoted to your baby, take a look around. Explore how much people are paying for similar artwork by similar artists within your community or artist network.

You don’t want to charge way more than other artists are charging for art that looks just as good as yours, nor should you sell yourself short. This is the trickiest part of setting your price and it can add hundreds if not thousands of dollars to your price tag.