My previous blog which touched on pricing has elicited one or two comments which have spurred me on to add a post script on the subject. This can be a tricky issue for a lot of artists and for anyone reading this blog who is not a creative, it may be interesting to understand how we arrive at a value for our work.
The first two comments I have had come from two very different artists.
Painter Angela Canada Hopkins has an approach that I haven’t come across before – she prices by the square inch which she says « keeps her consistent ».
Ann Brauer who makes beautiful contemporary quilts believes that « each piece has its price and its owner”.
I price according to my perception of its worth to me to let it go (see previous blog).
Some artists will price according to time spent and cost of materials, but whilst this obviously works from a commercial standpoint, I don’t feel it takes account of the quality of the work.
Then there are those who compare their work with their peers and fix a price accordingly.
It is also true to say that work may need to be priced according to the venue in which it is displayed – price it too low in a good gallery and the work will not sell. I read a good article recently by Eric Rhodes who referred to an extremely successful artist who had failed to sell a piece at a low price and a few years later had shown the same piece at a price many times higher than the original one and sold it straight away!
So what conclusions should we reach? Fundamently, the artist must have faith in their own work – not always an easy one for the creative. (Given the title of this blog, I try to price mine on the days the roller coaster is at the top of the track!).
At the end of the day, for the art buyer I would say – remember the huge amount of work – both physical and emotional that usually goes into creating a piece and in my opinion – don’t try to negotiate. To other artists, if you have used another method of pricing it would be interesting to hear from you here.