I don’t know about you, but my Landlord doesn’t accept ‘Exposure’ as payment for rent.

Many times I have been contacted or answered a ‘call’ for commission work. My reasonable rates are often met with a 50%- off counter offer, which doesn’t even cover my material costs.

‘But it will be great exposure’ they say…

Well that’s great, but I say we need to support eachother and not let others opinions of the value of our art and unique skillsets drive our value down.

In other words, we need to stand strong in order to take the romance out of the term ‘starving artist.’

Admittedly, there are times when taking a job for an incredibly low wage or volunteering is part of the overall plan. But, it’s important to be mindful of how low in price one goes.

Lowering your value may be hurting you and your fellow artists in the long run.

That being said, assigning a value to your art can be difficult.

Here is my very fair but complex personal way of pricing art:

‘We See You’, Acrylic on Canvas, Rhiannon Barry 2019

SIZE: How large is the piece? at $.50 per square inch


WAGE: How much time did I invest/complexity? $25 an hour (average 10 to 12 hours)


SUPPLIES: Material cost (average canvas, paint, sealer, wear on tools, frame, other)


MEANINGFUL: Assign a value to how much heart and soul is in this piece.

1=$50 2=$100 3=$175 4=$275 5=$400


APPEALING: Assign a value to public reaction and compliments, both on and off line.

1=$50 2=$100 3=$175 4=$275 5=$400


= my price 🙂

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