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So many artists underpricing...

Journal Entry: Sat Jul 26, 2014, 6:24 AM

It makes me really sad.

When an artist you want to commission finally open their commissions back and all of their slots are taken in less than a minute.

And I'm sure all the slots would still be taken if the price was increased of x2-x10.

So many artists are still underpricing themselves. People make it a standard for art to sell for so cheap and whenever someone charge more than this standard, which is probably still underpriced, people complain.

By underpricing yourself, you are also contributing to keep the price standard of art low on this site. Charging low can be insulting to other artists, but also to yourself.

Please, don't ever feel like you need to underprice yourself, because of the fear of what other might think or say. You art is worth more than that. There will always be someone complaining, you cannot please everyone. Your time, the efforts, the skills you gained over years of hard work, is worth far way more than a few cents/points.

If you ever open your commissions and all slots are taken in less than 5 minutes or you got more than enough requests by that time, please consider this.

Add a Comment:
Remiaro Featured By Owner Nov 12, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
As a rule of thumb, never lower your prices. Advertise instead.

Generally furafinity has a better commissions community if you're into drawing animals so it may be worth promoting yourself over there.
Ankit1480 Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Thank you for your great advice sir. But don't you think it can be used as a strategy for new artists (whose skills are not crappy) to gain a good audience. Just my thought.
MissSpock Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
tbh i think a big part of it is that when you charge points people are like "OMG 500 POINTS? THAT IS SO EXPENSIVE" when in reality 500 points is just $5???? I don't think they realize that?
ClarityWind Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I've had to lower my prices twice already. I've only ever had 1 USD commission. I feel like I am undercharging, but I honestly don't have any options. I need to get commissions to live as it is my only possibly source of income (full time student). 

I'm not advertising, so I wont post my commission info or any examples, but could you (or anyone) go to my gallery and look for examples and post what you'd charge for them, or buy them for?
I'd prefer someone to note me, honestly xD I don't want to flood this place with images and text from potential replies (not that I'm expecting any).
A piece can take me a minimum of 2 hours to do. More often than not it's much much more.
MultifandomLady Featured By Owner May 19, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks so much for this ^-^

I wanna raise my prices--I really want to--but the fact that most people will rather just commission someone for a lower price just flat-out discourages me. Either way, I regret the way I price because I know that there are others whom I disadvantage due to my prices :(

My commission prices are actually 5 points a pop in my other account, and my adoptables are 1 point each. I know, it is insulting for other artists who make a living. But when I tried to raise my adoptable prices to 10, nearly no one looked. If my situation is already dire at that ridiculously low price, how can I expect to raise it higher?

And then there's my previous adoptable history. I once tried to sell adoptables I spent a week on each for 20 points, and did everything to broadcast it to the world. How many did I sell over 10 of them? Only 1. That's just really depressing.

I'll, however, now try to raise my prices a little more, since I am a bit improving in my art now. It kinda feels unfair to me that I'll be paid only 5 points for something I drew in more than a few days :I
x-Riivenge Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I just decided to try the whole commission thing out, I did feel like maybe I should wait till I got better but I posted my price at 800 :points: because somehow I think that's fair. But we will see. =/
Satoga Featured By Owner Apr 2, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It's really sad.
one of my friends had to underprice their commissions to sell some of her sketches.
Also it is the same proplem with my art, I can't sell a sketch wirh 500 points as price. :I
yuukipink Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
There are so many artists selling that it's hard to make fair prices. Points make things harder too. Many people offer me points and I am grateful for any interest in my art but... I can not use points to buy things I need. ;___; so to be competitive I lower prices. ; 0 ;
NickinAmerica Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2015
I've considered raising my prices, but I'm worried that people won't ask for commissions any more because my art "isn't really that good" and they wouldn't consider it worth the price.
Satanies Featured By Owner Jan 6, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've noticed this insanely harmful trend going on a lot of art related sites. It's not only silly, but harmful for actual artists who does this for a living. I notice a lot of the underpriced one are the ones that usually attend school or do it as a hobby, leaving the ones dependent on the money from doing custom artworks, well, broke. It doesn't only harm you as an artist, placing you in a cheaper category, but also others that rely on this for simple living.
LunaSauce Featured By Owner Oct 23, 2014  Professional Artist
because of this I decided to up my prices. so yes........... thank you for this.
Dragunnity Featured By Owner Edited Aug 29, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the info, and i have a question if I may: Normally, what's the appropriate price for a drawing + colors and cell shaded?  :3
yuukipink Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
How long does it take you to finish a drawing? Price depends on time, skill and cost of supplies I think. 
Dragorama Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2014
heh, pretty sure I'm heeeaavily underpricing myself, but quite honestly I've tried advertising myself as much as I can, yet people still don't bite, so I don't know.
sapheda Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I know I shouldn't underprice

I just want people to buy my stuff
KaoruBlackstone1 Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I do them for free because not everybody has points and it makes me upset to see people not get to do the same things as the people with points.
OxyKitty Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I underprice because no one buys my commisions
yuukipink Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
It is sad isn't it? People seem more willing to pay popular artists. ^^; 
OxyKitty Featured By Owner Apr 4, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
summerfier Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2015  Hobbyist Interface Designer
i think that's probably because there's also an amount of trust and pride in buying a more expensive commission ;l
if someone is willing to spend, they would likely choose the more sought after artist, even if the artists' skills were similar
Singarl Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2014  Student
As an professional artist, I hate underpricing. On the other hand I can understand good artists underpricing themselves, because they get no attention and the really popular artist often refuse to feature other, not so popular artist who are very good though. So they try to underprice themselves to get attention.
That is why I started featuring an artist every month when I think they deserve more attention. In my opinion, we need to help each other out, not just posting journals about how underpriced other artists are bad and stuff.
We should actively help people so they don't need to undersprice themselves.
yuukipink Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I have seen popular artists feature their friends by drawing their characters. Ah, but I have not seen many journal features. 
hinema Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2014
Umm yeah, that's, how many commissions/pieces of art do you buy or request per month, at what you consider to be fair market prices?

If you're not actively combating the problem you see (i.e. putting your money where your mouth is) then you are in no place to be whining about it.
kwinzilla Featured By Owner Edited Aug 4, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Haha I used to take commissions for 5 points each and still no one would buy from me, but I'd still be happy when someone showed interest because I could at least get something (instead of nothing) for my art :') I know sometimes people underprice their artwork too because they don't feel confident enough to ask a reasonable amount. Please don't feel discouraged! Your art, the effort and time you spend on it are worth more than just a few points!
x3uu Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014
I remember the day I used a cash clock for a 20€ full-color headshot painting. I spent 6 hours, that makes 3,30€ per hour... could be better.

I lost faith regarding commissions on dA, because people tell me that my prices are too expensive. So I don't want to spend hours on dA commissions anymore.
MajdAddin-M-Alhasi Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
cavanjul Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014
I agree with this journal, I just started doing commisions recently but have yet to get one, that's why I keep them rather low despite it taking me about a day to complete...
Fshannan Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Same :'v
cavanjul Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014
:/  people be people.
Fshannan Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
ye ;w;
cavanjul Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2014
immortality1278 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I just found this in a related link. I really like the way you think, Kawiku. I know my stuff isn't nearly as good as what some of the artists here are capable of, but there are plenty charging way less than I do. It makes it harder on the cheaper artists, too, because they have to adjust their prices to fit the dropping ones. The prices should be steadily rising as time goes on, not dropping so far that the artists are doing their work for practically nothing. A lot of time and effort goes into most of the art here, and it's a shame people aren't willing to pay for that time and effort.
Kiwikku Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014
Yes. Just yes. 
Paradox-pony Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
ha..haha ;w; i wish this was the case for me...most of my commissions are like 10:points: and iv never once gotten a ACTUAL commission where someone used the commission widget ;w; but its okay i arts not perfect
Mechanical-Maniac Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014
Welcome to the world of business.

Cry moar.
UltimateVegetaKai Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
My god, this man made me almost cry.....
TheDemonicDarkrai Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
You're right. I need to raise the price. I only ask for 10 points for a full digital picture and now reading this I feel like I deserve a little more.
Deadninja21 Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Interesting opinion. I personally feel that unless the art is going to be auditioning, artists shouldn't charge more than at least $30 minimum for the piece of artwork. Especially if it's just line-art. I feel that if people are going to open commissions, they are free to set the prices to whatever they feel is reasonable. Although sad if the artwork is amazing and it only costs $5, it's the artist choice overall. 

If I was going to open commissions (I won't right now because I don't feel my art is worth a dollar yet), I'd set the prices to be based on how long it'd take for me to fully finish the piece, as well as how hard it normally is. Let's say that a piece of artwork usually takes around 30 minutes to an hour to complete for me. I'd set the price to be (And in my eyes this is reasonable), about $10 minimum. If it takes longer than that, the price will go up.

Again, I won't open commissions until I myself am satisfied with what I've come up with and I don't really understand completely on how commissions work exactly. This is going by the standpoint of selling art, which may not actually be the same as a commission or even close. These are just my thoughts. I do see we're you are coming from though.
AutumnZodiac Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
woah.i never thought of this.....but ive only sold like. 5 of my adoptable and no commissions. Hardly anyone who watches me really has coins they will give me for a drawing. So my prices are low......
If i get commissions i would make better pricing but, they arent selling D:
inspire8 Featured By Owner Edited Aug 1, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

I agree with Kawiku!Nod 


Working for decades as a professional artist I have come up with a set of happy rules for living as an artist.
It's been working for me so maybe it will work for you too. :D (Big Grin) 


1. Don't worry or ask others for "approval" if you or work is good enough to be an artist.  JUST GO FOR IT!
All artists & creativity are unique, keep on creating and promoting...


2. Don't make less of yourself or your art, and don't wait for someone to "love" or "approve" your art or creations.
Love it yourself  first, this will then come across in your art and your audiences will love it too.


3. It is YOU who determines the value of your art. If you feel overworked, tired or working like a "slave", it probably means you are you not charging enough. Waaaah! 
Increase your rate, and turn down those jobs that make you feel less or devalue your work.

4. By doing the above you raise your own standard & value as an artist, and you also help the rest of us keep ours. :happybounce: 

5. Just imagine how dull life would be without the things artists create....?
Great paintings & illustrations, amazing music, songs & dance, great stories, poetry,  theater & films. Beautiful designs, structures & gardens, etc... all these  things are created by artists like YOU.

Arlunwyr Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I understand this too well.  I don't like to do commissions for that reason.  Art trades to me, are more rewarding and less pressuring.
SaMKaY-3D Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Well since Im new. Is my skills and art commisionable?
Luxifurus Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014
Advice from my massage instructor: "Nobody will ever thank you for being cheap."
NaberruryAh Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Student General Artist
Yeah, but how do you know when the price is right?
Plumbledoor Featured By Owner Edited Aug 1, 2014  Student Digital Artist
Personal opinion, commissions had sort of lost their meaning to me. So many people do so, but the reason for why its lost any point to me is that I see people doing commissions when their standard of work isn't particularly high
I suppose for me it's kind of coming back to the way that there are popular artists where other unseen ones with a much higher standard of work aren't notices, the same could be said for commissioners though, though I've not ever actually considered the pricing as an element before to be honest

(Also apologies if you got a load of messages then, I kept accidentally sendin this before I was done, typing from an iPhone)
brinrose Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I finally worked up the courage to increase my prices into the 100($1) range
 and now nobody commissions me so i guess ill be lowering them again even though i really dont want to because everything you just said is 100% right :/
JayLights Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2014
Don't lower, advertise yourself instead. You should not be doing art for less than a dollar. No-sir-ee
Murlovely Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I wish people would actually commission me TTATT Am I doing it wrong?
LonPi Featured By Owner Aug 1, 2014
Slots taken in minutes vs months/years
When comparisons begin, those taking a longer time to fill their slots might end up underpricing even more.
Being sad for them is one thing but promoting them would be awesome.
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Submitted on
July 26, 2014


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