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Uhg I'm so tired of seeing artists under selling themselves cause there's cheap asses out there who seem to have no sense of value.

To artists: Don't undersell yourself. If you spend hours on a picture for someone who only paid you $5... stop. Seriously you under selling yourself just to get a commission shouldn't happen. I understand that you might think you're not popular enough to get tons of commissions so you think that if you sell them for really cheap people will buy them, but who cares! If you spend 4 hours on a picture worth $5 you've essentially paid your commissioner with your life. You might as well open up requests! Charge what your art is worth!! You not only hurt yourself but everyone else. The reason you have to sell your art for chump change is because everyone else is selling it for chump change. Also, why are you drawing primarily for money anyway? It's not exactly a good job. Heck most of us don't even make minimum wage ((myself included)), so what a rewarding job indeed. If you want to make money, get a part time job... it pays WAY more. Enjoy what you do, and if you want to get paid to do it, bonus! It's not being greedy or mean to charge what your art is worth, its called having some confidence in yourself! DRAW WHAT YOUU WANT PAINT THE SKYYYYY
If they do complain to you about pricing, tell them to draw the picture they want themselves and watch them shut up.

To Commissioners: I understand not all of you are cheap people, some of you really don't have any money or various other reasons. But everyone else, keep your mouth shut. Don't tell an artist their prices are too high and you want them to lower it so YOU can get art. Can you walk up to a car dealer and tell them to lower the car's price because you want one? No. Save your money if you want art like you would for a car. And if you say that buying a car and buying art are two different things because being an artist isn't a real job then please go bury yourself in a tiny hole. Flipping burgers at McDonalds isn't a real job but guess what, they still get paid minimum wage. In all honesty, paying even $60 for a piece of detailed work that the artist spent many hours on is a STEAL, and most don't even charge that. Even if they spent 6 hours on it for $60, do you realize that's only $10 an hour? Professionals charge like x 10000000 times that. Try $1000 minimum. So you still wanna keep complaining that commissions are too expensive? Save your money, just like you would for anything else in life. Art is a product, just because you talk to the creator doesn't automatically mean you get to have your way.

Lastly: I am both an artist and a commissioner. In fact a lot of the money I get from commissions I spend on artwork from others! I don't necessarily need the artwork, but I really love buying from new artists. Call me weird, but when I first started out the most flattering thing in the world was when someone wanted to buy art from me and they were willing to pay for it. So actually when I find an artist underselling themselves, I tip them heavily. I'm sure there are a few of you that can contest to that. As commissioners you have the power to encourage someone beyond words! Giving an artist a tip or even just telling them you really love their art and you want to buy it will seriously make them happier than you could imagine. This doesn't only apply for commissioners, artist put aside some money and help support others as well. Don't let them undersell themselves, encourage them!

So artists, grow a spine!
And commissioners, have some understanding and stop being greedy jerks.

That is all *table flip*
Add a Comment:
 
:iconnightmares4breakfast:
Nightmares4Breakfast Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2014  Student Filmographer
I'm think about doing commissions next month, and I've already started doing free requests. If I do simple b&w sketches in Photoshop for $5 each, would that be good? Each pic takes about an hour for me to draw.
Reply
:iconmegaanimefreak7:
MegaAnimeFreak7 Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2014  Student Digital Artist
YES
Reply
:iconjurggonnaloveit:
jurggonnaloveit Featured By Owner May 13, 2014   Traditional Artist
I love this! And I love it even more that you wrote 'table flip' at the end! 
Reply
:icons-p-r-i-n-k-l-e-z:
s-p-r-i-n-k-l-e-z Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2014  Student General Artist
Eh, Im a beginner and my art isn't all that great so I would only charged like 15 :points: or 0.50 USD for a shaded traditional :P
Reply
:iconsakurasadamewingz:
SakuraSadameWingz Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013
Thank you for this. It's really inspirational. =]
Reply
:iconthe-cannibal-sheep:
The-cannibal-sheep Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013
AMEN. :I
It's sad how people don't seem to have a clue on how much effort a piece can take. I don't even opened commissions here, cuz I doubt I can get a fair price with my audience at all. ;;xD So I just don't so it. I have better things to do, or I do trades instead cuz I at least get something equal back and it's fun.
I admit I do buy point commissions, but I usually tip people cuz I feel so bad when I get a really nice pic and I pay like 30 points which is like a few cents :T
Reply
:icondamaimikaz:
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It's about time somebody said this
Reply
:iconmagicpawed:
Magicpawed Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I agree, although what should you say to a beginner artist who wants to sell? I usually tell them that 5$ is a bare minimum. Like never go lower to (or even near) 5$

Reply
:iconlowlyworm:
LowlyWorm Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
THIS JOURNAL TELLS THE TRUTH.
Reply
:iconxuza:
xuza Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013   Digital Artist
People forget that art is a luxury, and they feel entitled to getting it for cheap. DeviantART is a cesspool for breeding the idea that buying art should cost next to nothing. And underselling does nothing but rip off the artist and perpetuate this terrible mindset :I
Reply
:iconskudges:
skudges Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013
ahhh i love this journal! you put it so well, especially the 'to commissioners' part. i think a lot of the problem is that the general dA audience is pretty young and not in the art industry and they don't realize that people who do art as their real job charge WAYY higher than these so-called 'expensive' artists on dA. I mean, professional artists/designers charge can charge like $50+ an hour, so that is like 10x more than what people complain about being expensive here! thanks for posting this journal; i hope a lot of people read it. c:
Reply
:iconsemyaza-devora:
Semyaza-Devora Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I agree with this, but at the same time I'm probably one of those people that undersells, but I undersell because...I RARELY get commissioned. I'm lucky if I get a single commission in a year, so it made me really feel as if I'm charging far too much. I do want to lift my prices as I only charge about $50-$60 for a fully colored picture with background in traditional media, but I have the fear that I'll scare off people by raising my prices. It's quite the dilemma.
Reply
:iconfenrirrose:
FenrirRose Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Wow thanks, your rant made my day :) Faith in the world grew just a bit more ^-^
Reply
:iconinvisibleking:
InvisibleKing Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
These things are annoying me too, I have very low prices too but I don't have what to do, I'm really dissapointed that the popularity decides the prices of art and not the quality, I sometimes look at my adopts and realise how if a popular person would post them they'd get at least 10$ for them, but I can't get a 3$ . _ . it hurts.
Reply
:iconnekootakugirl:
nekootakugirl Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
I wouldn't ever have the courage to ever sell my work o - o Seeing as it isn't that good.
Reply
:iconwolfdesigner10:
WolfDesigner10 Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013   Digital Artist
this was really informative!
thank you!I didn't know that some artists do that .O.
and wow I didn't know commissioners did that either :/
I recently commissioned someone and they were affordable for me when I went to a con
I also saw this other person who was REALLY GOOD and I wanted to commission them but I couldn't afford it
That's why I didn't say anything about her pricing! Her stuff looked liked it deserved the amount she was selling for
I never knew commissioners would talk about pricing like that :/ even though the commissioner would have liked to
get a certain artists artwork but cant afford it they could at least keep it to themselves and not ask the artist if they can lower the pricing
at least compliment the artist's work and be courteous and not talk them down on pricing they do work hard on they're commission for
I think they should keep looking for other people who might be affordable for them doing what some of them do apparently

But this was a nice rant! and was informative! :3 This kind of helps me think a lot more about pricing and stuff! Especially since I've been thinking about
doing commissions but am not quite sure yet still! >U< Thankyou again for this ! Even though it was a rant! xD
Reply
:iconstarlightangel-wolf:
StarlightAngel-Wolf Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
lol I should have read this BEFORE I posted my commission prices on your more recent journal. ^^''
I actually encourage you to yell at me if you think mine's too low XD I can't know where to improve if people don't tell me!

but until I actually GET another commission I see no reason to raise them as I am still a beginner just barely starting to gain technique or style. so little interest shown in my art anyway since I don't get to do it often
I am one of those people who knows the pain of being unable to afford nice art because of budget, that's what began my low prices after I could no longer afford to do requests. At least I get Something AND enjoyment of helping make people happy for a moment.
Plus I, like others, have seen both sides, artists underselling and overselling.

The only 2 people who actually ordered :point: commissions from me are the ones who encouraged me to raise prices to what they are now based on their wordless expression of giving more than what I had asked for (and one of them told me not to be afraid to charge more, made me happy someone felt I deserved more). SO my prices now are based on what they paid me.
Reply
:iconjam-a-val:
jam-a-val Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Spread More Love Emote - PLZ :love: In love YOU ARE AWESOME. Love Tards SO MUCH LUFF :heartemote: 




Yes, I'm weird. :dummy: I'm also awesome.
Reply
:iconslimeattackk:
SlimeAttackk Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
;w; /Undersells self/ *flails away*
--
There should just be a week where all underselling artists on dA have to raise their price by a certain amount, as to make more than minimum wage. Then, if others buy their art, they'd see they make more money, and thus, they'd keep that price. c:
Reply
:iconchriswillar:
CHRISwillar Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I agree with you, generally.

However, you must also take into account that some people - who perhaps do not want to be professional - have low prices because they just want to get some pocket-money for doing something they enjoy, and not live of it. These are usually the ones using the dART points system. Some decide to work for free, and you can't tell them not to - it's their choice. And as someone else stated, certain artists also overprice themselves compared to the product they offer. Really, leave it up to the artists to decide what conditions they "work" under. If you think an artist undersells themselves, let them know individually and privately. Have set prices according to what you offer and what you feel comfortable about, then commissioners can decide whether they want to pay the amount or not (but good grief, don't ask for a discount or say it's too high!) Does it lower the industry standards? Perhaps here on dART, but that can hardly count for a huge part - most professionals got their own portfolio websites and such; it's there the "real" industry is.
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
Well if only people commissioning artists could turn a blind eye and say that each artists charges for what they believe they deserve and are willing to save and pay for some of the artists who charge more than dirt. But I can't tell you how many times I see someone will really amazing art selling it for pennies to the dollar because they don't think people will commission them otherwise or because its just a side hobby and they don't really care, which forces everyone else who isn't as good as they are to sell their commissions that they worked just as hard on for practically nothing. Like seriously, if I sold my commissions for $10 then I would get tons of commissions that earn me practically nothing in addition to giving the mind set that if they can get art like mine for this cheap than nothing else is worth more. I know nothing will just but uhg.
Reply
:iconchriswillar:
CHRISwillar Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I understand your point perfectly; however, fact is, on a site as dART you cannot expect everyone to be professional, act professional, nor wish to become professional artists in the future. I would say, 90% of those who offer commissions and requests are hobbyists who do it for fun, and hey, if they can gain a few pennies from that, then they will do it gladly. That's why I mentioned that professional artists typically have a portfolio website where their best artworks are displayed and also their fixed prices - and then they use dART as a social medium, like FB, to spread awareness and get supporters. Keep in mind that you shouldn't give social networks as dART and Tumblr too much credit when it comes to professionalism - they are "get together and show" sites, not sky high class community only for the top 10 of the best; this place is for everyone to show their work, good and bad, amateurs and professionals, and those in between. Everyone is welcome, and everyone has the same rights and opportunities. Yes, this might effect the standard, but dART wouldn't have been this successful otherwise, and would quickly lose a great deal of their foundation if they decided to change it now. Keep your prices as they are, and let others keep theirs - because whether you like it or not, far from everyone is interested in selling enough art online to live decently of it; it is simply a fun hobby that they may or may not be able to get pocket-money from. Working professionally as an artist is tough, and dART is just not where you should rely on getting a steady amount of money, only a very few selected handful can earn enough here to call it their main income, simply because dART is not that kind of site. And sorry to say, but you cannot change the way things are now, nor is it truly any of your business how much people want to offer for their work - if you think someone is underselling, let them know, but do so discreetly, because when it comes down to it, it's their choice completely and you can only offer your opinion, just like you decided what your prices are. It sucks, I know it does, especially if it's effecting your potential buyers, but that is life.
Reply
:iconmunnkie:
munnkie Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I was beginning to feel like my commission charges were too high but I can't afford to go any lower because I really need the money... ^^;
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
well unfortunately there's a reason why the saying "starving artist exists" =/

but because there are enough people willing to for for nothing it hurts people trying to earn a decent wage.
Reply
:iconcodetsuzuki:
codeTsuzuki Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Professional General Artist
Thank you for posting this! T A T;; This is the problem I am having as well! I feel no one will commission me because so many people are underselling themselves and the DA point system has devalued the dollar. I'm trying to somehow stay afloat, but the ones getting commissions are the ones selling really low or are really really good art. There doesn't seem to be any middle ground anymore.
Reply
:iconkraikrai:
KraiKrai Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
i agree with this at the same time that i dont:

as an artist/buyer i know that people can undersell themselves BUT i ALSO know that people can oversell themselves. if everyone and their mother is saying "thats too much for this piece" then MAYBE its too much. sorry, it may be harsh, i may be breaking your heart, but it might be overpriced. a few cheap people saying its too pricey is one thing but when EVERYONE is saying it is, i think its time to wake up. same with underpriced pieces: if everyone is saying how great it is then charge more, feel free to do so

you can price commissions however you want, at whatever price you want but with commissions its all about popularity and what the people want(ie you can charge an arm and a leg for anything MLP but simple bunny chibis no). because in the end theyre buying your art. i may like my art but if the person hiring me doesnt think so then that means crap.

but then again if you're doing art simply "to art" why even bother with
commissions? its great for a little side cash but like you said it's
better to get a job. why care if no one is buying your commissions if you're simply here to draw(or are drawing for the fun/pleasure of it)?
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
No I'm not saying an artist drawing stick figures sell their art for $40 because the stick figure took them 4 hours lol.

But I do see a lot of very good artists under selling themselves all of the time. Imagine if I cut my prices as someone who has an audience, what would that do to the value of everyone else's art who aren't quite at my level yet? Yet this is exactly what other people are doing thus making it indefinitely harder for other artists. If "popular" artist charged what their art was actually worth then everyone else could sell their art for at least some money instead of for bread crumbs. That is the problem I have.

And just because you enjoy doing something doesn't mean you can't get paid for it. That's like saying if you enjoy being a lawyer you should work for free. If someone wants to be an artist, or even if they just want to make some extra cash, just because they enjoy drawing doesn't mean they should draw for others for free.
Reply
:iconkraikrai:
KraiKrai Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
sadly thats the case. popular artists will always over shadow the lesser known artists no matter how much better they are and because they know this they can charge whatever they want.

its a popularity game. being an artist is all about competition and who's got the better price. its all and sink or swim. itd be nice if people could be civil and charge things as they should be but unfortunately that wont happen anytime soon. all we can do is try our best and hope for the best.

also that last thing runs both ways: just because you enjoy something doesnt mean you ll get paid for it. not a lot of people get to do what they love for a living and GET PAID. im just saying people(especially young people)should play it safe. also im not saying you should draw for free or not charge people but like you said "If you want to make money, get a part time job... it pays WAY more. Enjoy what you do, and if you want to get paid to do it, bonus!"
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
Unfortunately, supply and demand in action.
Reply
:iconkraikrai:
KraiKrai Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
yeah it sucks ;-;
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:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
should add a disclaimer "in a perfect world"
Reply
:iconkraikrai:
KraiKrai Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
definitely.

i just feel like you should have a back up plan. it good to go for your dreams and price things how you like but it cant work for everyone. so what would it hurt to get a job? most people i meet refuse to get a non art related (and paying) job and only work commissions for a living. like its a BAD thing or something
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
There's a word for people like that lol, idealists xDDD
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconnestly:
Nestly Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
My thoughts exactly. By under-cutting yourself as an artist, you lower the standard, thus, you help ALL artists make less.

Without an industry standard, people simply cannot get paid what they're worth.
Reply
:iconquinnettice:
Quinnettice Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I Have Been Doing Free Art Requests And I Would Be Taking Hours On Them. For A While It's Be Affecting My Sleep And It's Been Making My Health Go Down Quite A Bit. I Don't Even Have Time For My Own Artworks. When I Read This Something Sparked In My Head And Just Minutes Ago I Closed It And Linked This With My Own Small Rant. I Really Only Did Them To Get More Watchers/Get Myself Out There, Iv'e Only Gotten 4 Watchers From Doing It. They Said They Liked My Art And Stuff But Ever Since Then They Haven't Commented Or Favorited Anything I Did. I Just Felt Used Even Though I Was Doing It For Free. So Thank You Sooo Much For Writing This !! :iconyuiglompplz:
Reply
:iconpikapaws:
Pikapaws Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you for posting this >w< I struggled with this a lot in the past and have a lot of confidence issues still but I feel like I've been getting better and now charge fairly for my commissions.
I used to do cheap commissions just to get work. I mean yes i have a min wage job and 40 hours a week so i used the commission money on stuff i liked, like commissioning other artists, buying manga, etc but the more commissions i took i realized that i'm stressing myself out for like a dollar an hour and it seriously killed my passion for drawing for a while.
So now i'm kinda in between. I like the extra income but it's not worth the stress and often times i don't even have time to draw what i want between work, school, and family.
All in all i just stopped replying to people who spoke negatively when i raised prices and in some cases even had to block a few because of spam comments such as "wow, that's way to expensive" and such on every journal or piece of art where i advertised that my commissions were open.
Art is a not a necessity so i don't think it should be charged as such. We put a lot of passion and hard work into what we create and often times we charge less than what it would cost to go eat at a fast food joint and still people think we are "unfair"
//sorry for the rant this stuff just really bothers me
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
hehe good for you ; v ;

And no I know exactly what you mean! With school starting I don't have time to do commissions which are actually just a side hobby in all reality that I get paid for. There's no way I could support myself with the money I make from commissions alone D:

But conventions help a lot and I do have a few repeat commissioners which just help me with the basics like food weheh. ♥ food ~
Reply
:iconpikapaws:
Pikapaws Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Ah yes same boat here >w<
I've never done conventions though haha i live in ohio so we have a big one like once a year at a local college and it's still weird and awkward xD A lot of big vendors w/ overpriced stuff (like 50$ stuffed animals and crap) versus original artists so it's not as fun :c love to catch some of the bigger ones though when i have more leeway and travel time! 
Reply
:iconrainfreezer:
rainfreezer Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
aw haha ikk but im not realy sure ;w; i remember when i used to undersell myself a lot

i think im ok for now, and haha i know it's kinda a personal thing but i'd love it if you could let me know what you think of my prices /w\ like are they too low or too high and stuff idk im not good with this stuff
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
I'd say you're underselling yourself by a few dollars, especially your pixels which are amazing. Charge $5 at least. Same applies for your art, $5-10 is still on the low side but it's a practical price increase.
Reply
:iconrainfreezer:
rainfreezer Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
aw thank you so much whispy!!
i decided to raise some of my cheapest items a bit, your feedback is great, thank you :') !!
Reply
:iconcoyvid:
coyvid Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
welp its either cheap and make money or fair price and go broke :dummy:
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
are you really making that much money with really cheap commissions that it should matter though? I'm not saying to charge an arm and a leg but seriously...
Reply
:iconcoyvid:
coyvid Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
im not a very popular artist so no one would even think to commission me unless it was cheap. i've never made more that $6 at one time even though i offer more expensive things than that
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
Yea I know it's really hard and seems impractical but it's all due to the current mindset. I myself am underselling to a degree, but jsut imagine if I dropped my prices. That would immediately under value other people who aren't as "popular". And that is exactly what is going on. The reason you have to sell your art that you worked hard on for near nothing is this starving mans mentality everyone seems to have. I know nothing will change, but it still urks me.
Reply
:iconcoyvid:
coyvid Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
well i know it sucks but that $20 a month a get really does help and i know i wouldn't get it if i raised my prices. i used to have them much lower though, i guess if i slowly raise them no one will notice?? (maybe)
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
hehe I know the feeling, and well I know you can't make the good money until you become a professional but don't cut yourself cheap too much ♥
Reply
:iconaoidimitri:
AoiDimitri Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
//undersells self and rolls away

:iconlazyrollplz:
Reply
:iconmeirii:
Meirii Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013
i find myself making less than minimum wage with almost everything i offer. uou"
i end up justifying it by saying i'm working my own hours in my home, and such.
i'm torn between charging more, competing with other artists, and making my art available to as many people as possible (cause i want my art to be affordable)
THAT IS TO SAY i totally agree with you tho. just, circumstances /flop
Reply
:iconwhispwill:
whispwill Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student General Artist
yea I get you, I'm in a money pinch myself and I undersell my art to a degree. But imagine if I charged lower? How many people would that effect? Suddenly people who aren't as "popular" as I am would think their art isn't worth anything!

Same goes for you missy, charge people more. Trust me their will be people willing to pay for your art, myself included ♥
Reply
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