One of our members, Bob, has the opportunity to hold an exhibition of his completed artwork at a local cricket club. Bob has asked if I could give him a few tips on how to go about the do’s and don’t’s of presenting his pictures for sale. I am sure that from time to time this situation might well occur with other members so I am offering a few suggestions that might help.
Frame Some of Your Work
It is a good idea to have some of the of the work framed as this gives the best presentation but of course this can be pricey and there is no guarantee the work would sell. Another way in which to present your pictures is to have them mounted and placed in plastic sleeve this still presents the pictures better than having them infrared and unmounted showing all the rough edges that are inevitable with original art.
Pricing your work is very hard, almost certainly you would set the price point too low as you would not be objective about your own efforts. Therefore it’s a good idea to ask someone you can trust to be objective and suggest a price to you although the final decision is up to to you. Price can also depend on the subject material. Domestic animals, particularly cute ones, would be popular and could be priced higher. Landscapes of local scenes again would be popular but obscure scenes that you might like would be no guarantee others would feel the same about them.
It is important to be present at the exhibition if at all possible because people love to meet the artist’s and talk over the inspiration and reasons why you painted the picture. In my experience it can tip the balance when it comes to a sale. Of course it is possible, but not usually likely, you may receive negative comments so it is always best to be prepared for this possibility.
Another possibility that might arise is requests for commissions, while this would be tempting I would strongly suggest that you resist any such request. Commission work can be very stressful and unless you are confident that you are able to ‘take the strain’ politely decline the request.
Bob has sold some prints of his work already so in his case he is used to meeting and conversing with potential customers, but holding an exhibition for the first time can be daunting but it can also be exhilarating so if you do get a chance give it your be shot.
I hope these tips help with anyone else that has the opportunity in future. If you feel this article would benefit others then please share using the buttons below.
Update: Bob had exhibition and here’s what he sent to us: “Well it happened yesterday (art exhibition) I said I would get back to you on the result, well I did what Colin said, and yes it went well. I kept it to a small window 1 till 4 pm and sold 8 pastel paintings, all at £30 00 which all helps towards new materials, I really enjoyed it and definitely will be doing it again in 6 – 9 months, thanks very much for your tuition and help. Bob”.