This is the ultimate answer to anyone wishing to sell their services or art. And really it requires a common sense answer.
But first here is my little story on this very subject when I started out. I used to think that my artwork was worth little and I had to create lots of it to make enough money to live…but then the realisation dawns on you that you are spending hours drawing each piece of artwork and you have to factor in an hourly rate to match the hours you spend on the drawings.
I’ve only really started to sell my art properly since the beginning of 2014 and that was on eBay selling my artwork for a couple of pounds each which was very ridiculous because you build your portfolio of art to sell and you expect that people won’t be able to afford to buy it at a higher price and so you price it low to sell and it sells for £2.80 or something pathetic.
Also factor in the silly free postage option which you have to pay for yourself so it isn’t free and the eBay associated fees and the grand total you have earn might be 27p. Your hard work hasn’t paid off.
Ebay itself has changed over the years and of course it isn’t the only place to sell ones art.
The other things you need to take into consideration are the materials used because they cost money too, the time it takes to create and finish an illustration and then you can figure out your hourly rate based on them other 2 factors.
Later on down the line when you become in demand you can price accordingly and more competitively. And of course being an Artist you sell the original art but you can also sell reproduction prints of the art so others can own it too thus making more money, so it’s best to have consistent prices in place for all works of art.
Here is a design that Appears as a postcard on Zazzle and I sold the original art for just under £3, but I kept a digital copy of it and published it elsewhere and so far has made over £90 which doesn’t sound a lot, but it demonstrates the power of retaining your art to sell in multiple places.
Pricing your art to sell isn’t complicated it just requires you to be confident in your abilities and to make you realize that you are worth more than peanuts when it comes to people purchasing your art. Now that I understand that I am worth more, I will definitely not let my art go for cheap any more. (Well, apart from the ones already listed on my eBay page)
My hourly rate is £20 an hour and this I worked out to be about right as A4 size drawings take me around an hour and a half to 2 hours to complete so that’s £40 and an A3 illustration could take longer at 5 or 6 hours so that’s around £120. You just have to be fair with yourself and be flexible as well as realistic with the amount you think you should earn rather than what people buying think they should pay you.
Of course at your own generous discretion, you could offer a discount for your artwork which is nice and good marketing to do so. You always feel obliged to offer more for the price and yes you could and sometimes should, but Artists need to live and eat just like anyone else, we can’t get paid with fresh air and self esteem.
Anything that I list on eBay or elsewhere in the future will be priced in accordance with my hourly rate and requested commissions will require a £10 deposit up front for me to commit to the work.