Most artists envision supporting themselves by selling their artwork; however, it sometimes seems impossible. When you think of a thriving artist living off their work, we envisage big names in big galleries with massive price tags. If you’re an artist looking to start earning money from your work, the probability of selling art may seem impossible and intimidating.

sell art online paitings

illustration by tubik.arts

The following are essential things to know before you start selling your paintings.

1. Create an Online Art Shop within your Website

If you have an online art portfolio or website and do not want to involve a third-party marketplace, selling your paintings through your website would be best. Whether you present your paintings online or elsewhere, owning an online portfolio or website is still crucial.

Your website design should illustrate your artistic style and act as a display for prospective buyers and admirers of your paintings. The online art shop should include your best work and be a virtual illustration of your work.

2. Shipping

When selling your art online, you should also consider how the customer will get the painting after buying it. Your customer may be within the state, country, or overseas. Since you cannot personally deliver all the art pieces yourself, you must collaborate with art transport services. This unique transport service considers the delicate state of your paintings while in transit.

As such, they have special wrapping and packaging materials that ensure the art piece is not damaged during transportation.

3. Pricing your Art

Often, pricing your art is the most challenging part of selling art. And the issue is not what the artwork is worth. It is about what your time is worth and how to price the pieces concerning your career prospects. Most people are unaware of their time worth as they give it away daily to a menial job.

Consider the following if you start without a client base or name. It may take 10 hours to make a portrait where you give your time $20/hr as you would your office job. While working with this rate, you will create a $200 painting in 10 hours.

Now, if you can produce a portrait within 10 hours, you know your work is worth more than $200. It would help if you accepted, however, that you may not realize the actual worth of the painting when starting. Start by figuring out what your time is worth. Your monetary value as an artist is very little because you are yet to establish yourself, but that will change with time.

As you gain customers and sell more paintings, you will slowly increase the price of your artwork depending on market dynamics.

4. Determine your Market

When starting, use the people close to you and start selling close to home. Do not start by finding clients overseas. Look for people who can physically see your work, who you can personally deliver the paintings, and who keep it personal.

sell painting online

illustration by Tatiana O'Toole (Bischak)

Share your work through social media in neighborhood groups and show them that you can produce quality work. Always over-deliver for what you charge, and do not lose hope if some people are not willing to pay what the paintings are worth.

5. Have another Source of Income

An essential thing to do is to sell your work on various online art marketplaces or platforms. While starting, it would be better to concentrate your efforts on a single platform and learn from your blunders before you move on to other platforms.

Your art may not sell well on a particular website but sells great on another. Displaying your art on various marketplaces is an excellent way to increase income sources. Consider presenting your paintings differently, with lower and high price points.

If you have experience and the skill of working with a particular art medium, it’s good to consider launching an online course or teaching workshops. Check out platforms like Teachable and Skillshare, as they allow creatives to teach what they are good at to make extra income.

An online auction is another excellent way of selling your paintings. You can also try art markets and crafts fairs. Before you settle on a particular platform, thoroughly do your research and choose a reputable and trustworthy one.

6. Consider Including Print-On-Demand Products

You can significantly benefit from a print-on-demand website. After uploading a high-quality image of your painting, anyone can print it on any printing medium. This is a win-win situation as the website handles everything after you submit your artwork.


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