How much is a painting that size worth?
I’ve been asked that a few times.
How long is a piece of string?
You can see the training required to develop your eye to see tone and shape. After mastering these skills, you must study paint chemistry and practice the technique of applying a clean edge or a blended tone to a section of a painting. Then there are the years of practice necessary to produce a truly beautiful flower painting, such as the one below from a gallery I once managed.
Before purchasing artwork (especially if buying online) beware of fraud.
A painting may be a real investment artwork from an old master. But it could be a screen print on canvas with a slap or two of paint, as most sold-online paintings are. If you saw a painting on feebay from an unknown dealer, would you be able to differentiate a legitimate work of art from a cheap imitation? I am not saying that you cannot buy quality artwork online. As a matter of fact, online is the primary channel I use to sell my work. I simply want you to make sure you are dealing with a reputable dealer if you are seeking investment-quality artwork.
Be aware that there is a style of rose painting called folk art that takes a fraction of the time of fine-art painting. With this style, roses are stylised, not painted in the fine art way that I teach. Obviously, stylised painting is craft painting and, unless accompanied by marketing bull..., should be marketplace and home decor, affordably priced.
Price by Quarters method.
1/4 Raw materials cost.
1/4 Advertising expenses or Exhibition fees.
1/4 for Artist's Living Wage.
So, if you need $25. per hour in your county for a living wage, you would need to charge $100. per hour. If $25. an hour equals the costs of the raw materials, the overheads and exhibition advertising or commission cots, that might be a correct price. Here are two examples where that formula might work.
Leading artist: Painting priced at $1,400.
Quality Belgian linen stretched canvas and the worlds best quality paints and a premium quality frame. The total wholesale cost to artist $350.
Premium exhibition venue rental and adverting divided by sales $350.
Overheads and expenses as painting sales per year divided by annual overhead costs equal $359. per artwork. These overheads might be towards the cost of a computer, office supplies, travel for the landscape painter, the garden of a flower painter, camera equipment for a wildlife artist, plus studio lighting and air conditioning, ane an occasional assistant if required.
$350. x 4 = $1,400 for a quality work that takes the artist 14 hours to paint IF the living artist's wage in that location is $25. per hour and the value of the materials, overheads and expenses are all proportionate.
That formula, based on the above calculations, would be totally wrong for an artist using student grade paint, and a cheap chain-store canvas, none of which are archival value.
I'm using conservative figures here. An artist might be at the height of their profession and their work highly in demand. They might frame in hand-carved gold encrusted frames and display through high market, costly gallery space. They may need to charge $400. an hour to clear $100. an hour due to high overhead expenses and gallery fees. They may have clients happy to pay $4,000. for a painting that took ten hours to paint.
However, a speed painting created it a country where living expenses are low, often an Asian sweatshop factory where the painter might earn $6. per day to paint with cheap acrylic paint onto a poor quality screen printed canvas, to be sold in the Western world as an original oil painting, is worth—what? These paintings are purchased by number for a few cents, if small, and for a few dollars each, and are then fobbed off on eBay and at markets, or door-to-door, as the original work of the seller, for a 1000% markup. Shudder. Don't ever attempt to compete at that level. Just paint with integrity.
Exhibit where you believe there will be clients who can tell the difference and don't expect that the world owes you a living because you chose to become an artist. Being a professional artist is extremely hard work involving long hours of work and no job security. The rewards aren't financial, they are in working a job that's your passion, a job that you love.
Commercial or Amateur Artist. Painting priced at $40.
If the art materials for the painting cost $10.
If the overheads to complete the painting are minimal, say $10.
If the exhibition fee is only an eBay listing cost and fee on sale, or a local market, barely a cost of $10. per painting sold, and the artist whacked the work together as a speed painting, or it is an amateurish work, of no more value than a speed-painting, then $40. might be a fair price for that work, especially if it represents a flung together, painted to a price, craft work, speed painting rather than a work of original fine art.
If the customer cannot tell the difference, don't bother trying to convince them why one work is worth more than the other. Fine art appeals to slightly less than 2% of the population. If you want to create and sell fine art, don't try to do it in a speed painter's marketplace and expect everyone to understand that you spent more on the canvas than the speed painter can sell their work for. You cannot paint to please everyone.
Price by size method
Once you have worked out your overheads and exhibition and raw materials costs, and how long it takes you to complete artworks of varied sizes, you may be able to work out a price per size for our work. If you were to paint similar works, each taking the same amount of time per inch to complete, then that method might work for you.
Calculate the painting size by length multiplied by width = size x by dollar value = price of painting.
Calculate the painting size by length plus width = size x by dollar value = price of painting.
With one of those methods there is a wider variation in price between your smaller and your larger paintings. I've heard artists who use the length plus width method say that they don't put that much more work into a large painting than they do a small painting. so those prices work for them.
12" x 16" = 192 x 7.5 (an average trained portrait artist's calculation) = 1,440. is not an unrealistic price for a skilled framed artwork of that size.
As my overheads are lower, but I use the wold's best quality materials and paint to a high standard and in a labour intensive way, I price as width inches multiplied by length inches, multiplied by five, equals my unframed artwork price, plus delivery costs.
That makes a a 12" x 16" painting such as this one above, AU$960. direct from artist and unframed. Those are the prices I've charged for portraiture standard work, and had no difficulty getting for the past couple of decades. I generally will charge less if a painting takes me sell time because it hasn't required the skill of a portrait artist. Most artists will have their art bargains, lovely works, still painted with integrity, but of easier to paint subjects that took considerably less time to paint.
Award-Winning Original Glazed Stoneware Sculpture by Ryn Shell
Believe in yourself
I recall when I invested $7,500. on a professional pottery studio, half a lifetime ago, and before I could throw a pot. Some people thought I was mad. That would have been back in the 1970s. That pottery studio investment furnished me with many hours of joy through the years. Hopefully it is bringing joy to others as I sold it all when I downsized to travel and write novels in 2007.
My man never doubted me—bless him. I firmly believed that all I needed was a desire to become a good potter, a skilled tutor, and a lot of practice and I would become, and I did become, an award winning master potter and sculpture—as well as remaining an artist as my primary profession. I'm not saying that to beat my drum. I state it as a reminder that I need to take that s same determined approach to creating videos.
To become skilled at pottery, I needed to throw 1000 pots before I could throw a good one. I needed to throw another 2000 pots before I could consistently throw good ones. So. if it takes me 3000 video shoots and editing sessions to master this, I'll put that work in—but master the skill I will. It is happening. It took me six weeks of quality tuition and full time practice to throw pots as well as your average potter. It took years to reach the standard I was after.
OIL PAINTING or SOFT PASTELS