Pricing Artwork

Have had a few second thoughts about how much I priced the minimum bid for my little framed shark watercolor/ink drawing. I thought, since I’d be splitting the price with the gallery, I would like to get $50 for the piece, which means I put the minimum bid at $100. Now I’m thinking that I should have reduced the minimum bid to $80 or something like that. It’s so hard to gauge what you think people will shell out for a piece of artwork. I realized when I was looking for something to put in this benefit auction that I actually sold almost all of my oil paintings produced in the past five years. The most expensive ones that sold were $400 each, with a middle price of around $250. But people seemed fine with $300 or $400 for a painting.

It’s a luxury indulgence, fine art, but it’s not like it is something that will depreciate or deteriorate, and in the best sense of everything, it will bring some color and good energy to someone’s living or work space. Considering the hours that are put into each piece, if hourly rates determined the price, most of the oils would be quite expensive. I find that my pal Kate is a good person to price my artwork. She’s fair but doesn’t let me low-ball myself. At my first open studio event she went around and added one’s in front of all the prices I’d posted. Good friend.

I don’t think anyone is going to buy my little shark painting. If it’s still available after tonight’s auction, maybe I can give it to a reader of this here blog. Send it out into the world regardless. That would be ok with me.


  1. Thanks, Lee, and of course you’re right. No sense in having regrets, not about this. I’m curious to know how other people price their work. It seems like an art in itself.

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