Sunday, 26 August 2007

You've Got to Explore: Etsy!

"I think that buying handmade is a way of expression and communication. You express yourself through the objects that you choose to live with and with the objects that you give to other people. Handmade objects have a different meaning compared to industrial objects because they carry a human energy. The thing that most impacts people is other people. That’s why we experience something nice when we get anything handmade. When you buy handmade you are not only buying an object but you’re also buying a concept, an idea that has to do with the appreciation of what’s human. By buying handmade you are saying in a subtle way that you care about other people and that you are open for them to bring something into your life, it is an exchange, it is human connection."

- elsita, on Etsy. (Elsita mainly sells prints and jewellery.)

Etsy is a marvellous website of all things handmade, by artists and craftspeople from all over the world!

Please don't think that Etsy is limited to craft alone: I searched for "original painting" only to receive over 2,000 results! These results include prints from the seller's original paintings as well as original paintings.

Items for sale on Etsy include: accessories, art, bags & purses, bath & beauty, books & zines, candles, ceramics & potter, (things for) children, clothing, crochet, furniture, geekery (!), glass, holidays (themed), housewares, jewellery, knitting, music, needlecraft, paper goods, patterns, pets, plants & edibles, quilts, supplies, toys, vintage, weddings, woodworking!

There are so many ways to explore Etsy! One of my favourites is the Geolocator, allowing you to see items for sale from almost anywhere in the world. You can also choose any colour, & Etsy will find items for sale to match! The "Recently Listed Items" updates every fifteen seconds! The whole design of the website is just brilliant.

It appears to be simple, quick, & inexpensive to become a seller on Etsy too, & buyers are encouraged to arrange payment via PayPal.

Take a look at Etsy, you'll be hooked!

PS: I found a fellow Queensland artist/craftsperson on Etsy: Nic Hohn!

Sunday, 12 August 2007

Painting: "Stoney Creek"

"Stoney Creek"
34.5cm x 22cm (13.6" x 8.7")
Acrylic on 300gsm watercolour paper

"Stoney Creek" is one of a series of paintings inspired by prints for sale at the Etsy shop "smallstump".

A creek winds through my parents' property. When we were children, we were allowed to 'swim' in the waterhole only when the creek was flowing with clear water.

Tuesday, 7 August 2007

Pricing your art

How do you price your art?

Paul Dorrell, gallery owner, in his article "Establishing Prices for your Work" says:

"...I’m often asked by novice browsers why paintings and sculptures are always so “expensive.”...I typically answer by explaining that my artists have been working in their disciplines for anywhere from twenty to forty years. They’ve established, through decades of struggle, techniques that are unique to them–meaning that their work is uncommon. They have now reached the point where they’re due proper compensation for all the privation they’ve been through, and, in most cases, that their families have been through as well. To charge any less would be a disservice to the artist. I carefully explain all this, then finish by asking the questioner that if they’d been down such a long, exhausting, risk-imperiled road, what would they charge for the work? Invariably the answer is, “More.”

I say, “Very good,” then proceed to close a deal

There are 18 interesting artists' comments to follow that article.

Sonya Paz, a professional artist, has a commonsense guide to pricing your work here in the EBSQ Archives - such as:

"...Add up the materials and give yourself a humble fee, then times it all by three. For instance your canvas 15.00, usage of paints 6.00, your humble fee based on a four hour project 40.00. Sub totaling 61.00, times three 183.00. This is just an example, you can make your humble fee whatever you feel is fair for you..."

The pros and cons of pricing your art by the square inch, on WetCanvas includes two long pages of artists' opinions, including:

"...I had to put together a quickie price chart. What I came up with is Level 1 ($1 per square inch); Level 2 ($1.25 per square inch); Level 3 ($1.50 per square inch) and Level 4 ($1.75 per square inch). I decide the "Level" based on the complexity of the subject. As we all know, some paintings are very quick and some with a lot of detail will take much longer..."


"...A flat $ / sq inch doesn't work for me because either my small paintings would cost too little, or the large ones would cost too much. So I have a sliding scale of different rates for different size ranges. For example, if <= 80, then $4.50 / <= 200, then $4.00 / <= 300, then $3.00 /
... > 500, then $2.00 /

That works for my own style and method of work. I came up with that by first trying to think of a realistic price for the different sizes that I typically work in. Then I made a spreadsheet of square inches vs. $/ When I saw that the prices I had in mind fit a nice curve on the spreadsheet, I came up with that sliding scale

Alyson B. Stanfield, on her Art Biz Blog, has Pricing Your Art: 10 Rules, including artist feedback, and:

"...if you can't produce enough work to keep up with the demand, it's time to raise your prices..." (!)

Friday, 3 August 2007

Painting: "Blokes"

This is the follow up painting to "Inspired But Grounded", which I posted on the 12th of June - it's the second of this series. This one is entitled "Blokes":

Which of the two is your favourite, and why?

What would you suggest for the third painting in this series?