Hello, my pretty
Many years ago, I had a friend who was a brand new to the art world. She had only painted a handful of paintings when she decided to take a shot at selling her work. Eager to get started, she listed one of her favorite painting on eBay. I got an email from her in the middle of the night, and she sounded panic-stricken. She wanted to know if it was possible to delete the listing because she wanted to keep her painting.
I, too, have had second thoughts as soon as I pushed the post button. I’ve deactivated and/or deleted a listing as soon it went live. It doesn’t happen often, but it happens.
There is a very simple exercise I do in my head before I list a favorite painting online or send it off to a gallery. I imagine myself packaging up the painting, and getting it ready to ship off to its new forever home where I will never see it again in my lifetime. I imagine what I’m going to be feeling, and thinking as I’m preparing the painting for shipment. Will I be happy with the exchange of art (aka: my heart & soul) for money? Or will I be full of regret?
If you can’t imagine saying goodbye forever to a beloved painting, then you’re not ready to sell your artwork.
There are no rules in art, especially one that says because you paint you MUST sell your work. It’s your art. You can do whatever you like with it. If you don’t want to sell it, don’t sell it. It doesn’t matter what all the other artists are doing around you. You have to do what’s right for you.
The friend I mentioned above? Well, it’s 10 years later, and I don’t think she’s tried to sell another painting. Instead, she’s been teaching art for many years. She discovered a way to have a place within the art community without having to sacrifice her paintings, and it works for her.
My advice for new artists, if you are selling your work, be sure to price it correctly or you will be full of regret when a favorite piece sells.
More on selling artwork coming up next week. Stay tuned.