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July 22, 2015



Great post. Very true - luxury branding is all about perception - you have to set the bar for yourself in your art business and value your work highly. Once you do that, you put yourself in a position for others to value your work at that level.

Excited to read more of your posts!

lee ackerman

There is an artist in Slovakia named Tibor Nagy who in my opinion and several of my friends who thinks Mr Nagy is every bit an artist's artist
that there ever was. Please check out his art on his web site and think about what a benefit his presence at Plein Air 16 would be. I contacted him via email with the suggestion that he attend and he replied that he lived half way around the world and didn't have enough paintings ?? but I would love for him to come share his expertise, talent and wonder with us.
Could you have any influence? I'd be surprised if you said not.

Laurel Sherrie

To backtrack a little, On your Christmas in July idea, I did it. I sent out 66 Christmas mailers to clients who have purchased original paintings in the past. I modified your sample letter to fit my scene & my clients, and included the candy cane in the envelope! Lo and behold, I have gotten a Commission to do as a surprise Christmas present for a spouse! It was worth the time and postage! Thank you Eric!

Chaz Wyman

If you think you cannot afford an EXPENSIVE FRAME - think! you are an artist. The best artists are good craftspersons. Learn Frame-making! And make great frames.


I moved from Europe to America.
no work for the poor artists ... thing is that there is no interest in them.
World without art...this is the beginning of the end....


Ann Sansone

Eric, A few things: if we are underpaid and not selling, how do you propose we buy superexpensive frames to surround our paintings? : I live in an area with MANY galleries. These businesses are looking at their own bottom line and most will not price high because it reduces the number of people who can/will pay for it. The few high end galleries with the $2000.00 + paintings will witness a $2000.00 one hanging for well over a year before they, or the artist, finally sell it.: And then, usually, that customer got it on sale because they were aware of how long it hung there.(They talked the gallery owner down in price) : Most customers have NO IDEA that the gallery gets 1/2 of that sale.Which brings me to this-if you really want to make money, do only commissions. But, for that, you need a P.R. person and they are difficult to find/employ, at least in Florida. : Area is relevant; I did much better in Wisconsin 15 years ago. :
finally, you mentioned something about hanging in more than one gallery at once. Can't do that! at least not here, where there is a 25 mile radius for exclusivity, making your paintings seem more "rare". Your article is okay but I don't think you fully understand our field. And I don't want someone to buy my piecejust because it was expensive (what an insult!)...I want them to truly enjoy and cherish it, not show off their wallet.

Rob Macintosh

I lived in the States for 15?years up till 2002. I was labelled a wildlife artist and was doing pretty well. Went back to SA for 11 years. Since I returned last year I have won three 1st places in an online art competition. Have been accepted into very good galleries. Was accepted into two more art organizations .
My prices came down due to the fact that I had to re establish myself in the USA. But sales have been very slow. I push myself my name on FB LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest google+. Now am advertising in a top notch art magazine. What do I need to do to get more sales. I have put up my prices as of now. Still reasonable but an increase as I knew I was too cheap. Especially that I am a realist artist and it takes me a long time to paint one piece. I put my heart and soul into each piece. Whatever can I do to boost my sales. Prices have been raised for the up coming season.?

Steve Ceccato

What about pieces that are small (7"X7") before framing?


Excelent marketing strategy . good post.

Suzanne Gibson

Valuable information to think about. Finding my niche, understanding my value in the market. Knowing whobmy clients bare.... There's so much to learn.

Mary Taglieri

As a painter for over 30 years I so agree with Eric. I have done very well over most of these years selling in a low to mid range. Once our economy went down the drain I lost the low and middle income buyers. They're gone. I have since started painting a lot larger and raised my prices for the high end buyer since they seem to be the only ones buying. It works.
If something doesn't sell I raise the price instead of lowering it.

Ned Mueller

Some of what Eric says is true, but some of us who have been around see a lot of the other side of some of these issues. There are more artists that are putting their prices way over what they are worth..trying to sell them at prices that are just not equal to their quality. I know there are more like me in their feelings about all of this and I hope they have the chance to chime in! There is another side to all of this and one or two examples does not make It so for everyone. I appreciate and respect Eric for much of what he has done, but not so sure that some of this advice is so good for everyone.

Marian Fortunati

More food for thought.

Bernard Fallon

Great information and great stories to prove it!

Patrice A Federspiel

I'm a watercolor artist, charging above average prices in my market (Honolulu), but not nearly the kinds of prices you mention. Does the medium we use dictate any kind of pricing structure or is this more brainwashing?

Thank you for your wonderfully explicit post.


This is so, so, so true. I've slowly raised my prices over the years, and I went from having a stack of originals that no one buys, to struggling to fill a gallery show because my originals are selling as fast as I make them.

But I noticed that I still struggle to keep from wincing when I say my prices, to wait for that inevitable 'you are so overpriced' reaction.

Fiona Purdy

ps - this is the second blog post I received today about charging higher prices. Something is trying to tell me it's time for me to raise my prices again!

Fiona Purdy

Eric- what a wonderful post (as always). It's so true what you've said, unfortunately too many artists are brainwashed into not believing that they can charge so much more for their work. I believed it too when I was first starting out, but now I think the way you outlined it above. Your post just reinforced that I am on now on the right track. I hope your post gets through to lots of artists.

Thanks for sharing your expertise.

David Kasman

Well reasoned, excellent points.

Maria Brophy

Excellent article!

Now I'm wondering, how does a well known artist, who has built a brand on a fan base that is middle to lower middle class, move up into the luxury market?

My first thought is to create higher value work (bigger, better, greater quality materials), but what next?

Would love to hear your thoughts on this, Eric!

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