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Submitted on
May 18, 2013


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MOVE on 'Overpricing': About 'Overpricing' things

[My Opinion Versus Everyone's] Please remember these are simply my opinions and are not meant to imply that you should agree or disagree nor should these prove to be offensive in any way; if I do come across displeasingly then you have my apologies beforehand, thank you.

Ah! And btw, if you haven't seen Stephen Silver's video about pretty much this topic, please do :) ->…

I see a lot of comments here and there that go something like this...
"50 points?? Why would I pay 50 points for an adopt..."
"100 points? Are you sure you're not overpricing that...?!"

And I'm sure many of you have seen similar comments, now I understand that points aren't the easiest things to accumulate when you're fresh into dA or even well into your time here, as I was once a 13 year old kid who joined dA and got excited over her first 10 points :la: ...which I kept and refused to spend because it took a while's worth of designing adopts to get that ten points.

A while?
About ... oh.. over a good hour or so?

And in reality if I were 'convert' that now, of course considering the amount dA takes, I get 10 cents. That's $0.10 USD.

Minimum wage over here is $8 an hour and you get more for babysitting a kid --I don't know about you but industry standard for art goes up to the thousands range (don't believe me? Look it up) for something you can get for roughly $200 in dA, give or take a few +/-$50's etc, by artists anybody reasonable would deem professional, and of course I'm not saying it's reasonable to sell them at industry standard prices since most of us don't use art we commission, commercially.

I'm just saying that $0.10 for an hour's work, gives you about $1 after 10 hours.

That's... enough to buy you a burger after a hard's day work. Minus the drink and fries :)

--Oops! I forgot to include tax. Never mind! No burger at all.

Sure, when you don't/can't buy points and you don't get commissions at the moment (you will! :D Just keep drawing and you will be noticed! It's what I did :aww: If you don't believe me on that you can read a previous entry->…), it doesn't mean you have to be irrational and make someone feel bad for pricing art, designs, etc for something as insufficient as 10 points. Or 50, or even 100. Because technically once we convert that to real money -since points don't buy any food- we get $1. 

What I'm suggesting isn't that you go on a shopping spree and purchasing things priced at 100 points when all you have is 100 or so, just be thoughtful before commenting :)

Chances are, as I know there's no such thing as "all the time", most people -even people and friends I know-, will price commissions at anything from 4 points for a fully rendered image, and 100 points as their max.

I understand that some of us may still be 'amateurs' in this business (even I'm not professional right now!), but you know, instead of producing creative work for $0.10-$1 or maybe even $5 an hour on here, they could all be working a job for $8/hour (at least!), or if not old enough, then babysitting for $15/hour (or more!), or even doing other work that doesn't really give us the privilege so see the art we do and purchase for 10 points now do we?

Don't under-value yourself!
That's also another thing I need to write about, it's art style. 
As long as you stick to your own style, even if you're not even sure of a style yet or have one that's you yet, there's still not another person in the world that can perfectly replicate yours.
Also implying you can't replicate your idols' works unfortunately--take inspiration, yes! But never draw like them in that sense, frankly speaking.

So as long as you're doing art the way you feel it should be done, then there's no reason for your work to never be unoriginal or invaluable.  It took me a good year to settle on a style I find suits me and is still undergoing changes when I feel like I need to improve upon something, and for some it takes longer or shorter, but it's what attracts people to your work!

It's the same thing with you, what if you looked like every super model out there? No one would be pretty anymore, we'd just be another Barbie/Ken doll in a sea of other Barbies and Ken dolls!

So there's my little bit on self-appreciation. And for those that find it hard to be self confident, I can sympathize but that's no excuse to not try :)

So anyhow, don't complain if someone's pricing work at anything under 100 points because it doesn't matter how 'awful' you think their work is, just remember they're not pricing it at $100.

It's $1, mind you.

You would feel just as bad if you were pricing your work at $1 and have someone imply that your work isn't worth $1. 
$1 that probably in the hands of most kids and teens is spent at the school vendor for a bag of chips.

Weigh your options Wisely.

I've had people tell me 1000 points sounds ridiculous, and yes that's the thing with big numbers!
We think "1 thousand" and our jaws drop because we associate that with $1,000.

But even in other countries that aren't familiar with USD, some currencies are at an exchange rate of 1,000 ___ to $1. 

But either way, as hard as it may be to come by points without many means of earning them, it doesn't excuse you from thinking how your words and actions can affect others who at a first glance you might feel "overprice" things.

No one likes working for less than the minimum, and $1, let alone 10 cents, is far below that minimum standard.

Think more; wisely. Be less impulsive and rationalize for a change.

And imagine yourself being told that you're not worth 10 cents.

:) Because you and I know you're worth a lot more than that.

Supplements/Edits: (things I add after reading comments that remind me of things I should add :D)

-Just because you can't afford something, does not mean it's overpriced. Just because you can't buy a laptop, does not mean it's overpriced. 
Just because you can't buy a design/art, does not mean it's overpriced.

-I understand that 80 :points:=$1 ,but that money is virtually useless -no pun intended- for you as a living person, unless converted and dA takes 20 percent. But even then, 100 points is only $1.25... Okay so now you can get a burger.

-And yes, please don't under-value yourself once again. You can charge 25 points for an adoptable, like I once did, and be successful, and I always recommend starting small! Not too small as in 1 point, but 25 is a popular and reasonable starting point :) ....noooo pun intended xD This doesn't mean you're unappreciating yourself by undercharging, this just means you're being smart by actually making 25 points than if you priced it at 1,000 right of the bat and made 0 :) Just make sure that when you finally get a degree in art you still don't do the 25 points if you get my drift~

-Haha, and yes quality does matter of course! I wouldn't pay 100 points for a poorly colored base either, as mentioned in a comment, but for clarification, I do mean original art! :) Something someone put effort into!

-And this one is important, but I too thought a lot of things were so 'pricey' when I first joined dA. I had never sold a piece of art before and whatever work I did was requests, so I had no idea how to price things. That's when I looked to the already existent community of artists who took commissions to see how I should price my own things. When I saw prices like $5 or more eye-opening, 500 points, I recoiled a bit and wondered if that was a good idea. I didn't know of the industry standard or what people were even willing to value their art as since I'd been working free. But this is the real world, and no time is spent free :( Even when we're in school and don't need the money for 'food and rent' etc, we could be studying or doing other work but it's time we invest to bring you art. 
I understand that at first it may be a lot to get used to, but I never commented on anything saying it was overpriced, not only because I didn't feel like I had the right to even make someone feel bad--that's up to the commissioner I believe to point something like that out. But because I knew that without me actually experiencing the work load myself and taking time to learn the way this "works", I can't judge fairly. So please reconsider before making comments like "50 points is not worth is", because it makes you look bad, not the artist :)

-Oh haha, I forgot to mention this too! Also consider raising your prices for the benefit of others :meow: Why? Because let's say you're professional and you charge $5 (exaggerating for the purpose of easier visualization xD), and other professionals charge $100-200 for the same 'full picture' commission. 
Under simple circumstances, you'd look at those two prices and even if you had a good $300 on you, I think we'd all go for the $5, at least first :) Because that's just natural and it's fine.
But you know what you should do? Raise your prices, benefiting yourself, and the market. It's awfully nice for the consumer but not only are you going to be overworking yourself, others are going to really lose out on a lot of business too!

-By the way, Art is a creative business, you can't price the priceless :)

-OH, I must not forget to mention, this is going to be one of my biggest tips.


Build your reputation! When I first took commissions I spent 6-7 hours on a 1000 point commission which is ($12 not converted, $10 converted), meaning I made 70 points an hour. I then got a chibi commission I spent 3-4 hours on and made only $2. The initial time investment is FINE. It helps to start when you're younger and not needing the money to live, but as logical as you find it to not spend the big bucks on some company you don't know, it's the same case with art. How can you trust the artist will finish it on time? Or even at all? Or that it'll come out good? Chances are you INSTINCTIVELY DO NOT. So build people's trust and show them you can get the work done. :) With practice, the same quality image you spent 4 hours on, will reduce to 1 hour. As with me xD It's different for everyone, but trust me haha.
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GlaringFeline Featured By Owner Edited Jul 26, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I agree wholeheartedly! People shouldn't bust their ass for pennies. I spend roughly 2-4 hours on some of my best work and I'm not about to accept the price equivalent of a lunch at a fast food joint for all that time. Add on the years it took to get me where I am. Not only am I being payed for the work I do on that particular piece, I'm also getting paid for years of work it took me to get where I am now. I have a tenancy to under-rate myself but I can say that my years of work are not worth one USD.

It is very childish and very insulting to tell an artist that their work is overpriced, I wish more people on this site saw this; but a lot of people here are young and new to the art community. Let them have a few years on art sites, they'll realize that $10 is actually very cheap. :lol: I've gotten a commission that was almost $50 at a con in November. While I thought that was kinda high at first, I didn't complain because I know that was professional quality, expensive tools were used to draw it, the Artist Alley table rent isn't cheap, and it came out amazing; I didn't regret my purchase for a moment and it is still in the same condition I got it in.

I don't blame people for complaining about those that charge $10 for a terribly colored-over base or recolor of some sort.
Capukat Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014   General Artist
Sorry for the late reply!

But yeah my thoughts too! Since all artists spend years perfecting their craft. 

I have to say, after I've stayed here a decent while, even $50 is cheap to me at this point. 

Although yes x___x a bad recolor or something probably isn't worth it..
GlaringFeline Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
It's okay. ^^

Same. being here a few years gives you an idea of what the market is like.

Don't even get me started on how often I see amazing adoptables that weren't made with any sort of base sell for pretty much nothing. X-X I can't stand that.
Capukat Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014   General Artist
Yeah definitely!

I know what you mean D: It saddens me to see that as well!

Currently crossing my fingers that my latest adopt will sell well XD
GlaringFeline Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I hope it sells! ^^
Capukat Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2014   General Artist
GlaringFeline Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome~! ^^
RachBurns Featured By Owner May 14, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for posting this! It really helps me for thinking I was being 'too expensive' (at $7 per thing).

Though could you go over a few things with my own prices with me? I'm horrible with numbers and I want to be sure I'm asking fairly, since I may be asking a little high for my level/trying to get initial customers.
Capukat Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014   General Artist
Sorry for the late reply!
But no problem :D

Oh gosh you know if that question is still up for consideration I'll happily help you.
(gotta say though, highfive for using wix XD I use it too! 

But I think your prices are good right now! I started with prices like yours too :D
RachBurns Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wix is very good! :highfive: And no problem about late replies, everyone gets busy!

Thank you so much. I really do need help. XD
I had to raise my prices a little to attempt to help buy things around the house (I couldn't do that with my original prices ^^;). What I'm curious about is if I've gotten a little too expensive for my skill.

Commission prices (US):
-Sketches: $8
-Lineart: $10
-1 Character Flat Color: $12
-1 Full Color Character: $14
-Extra Characters: Add $5 per character

-1 Color Behind Character: Free with colored character
-Scene Without Color: $14
-Scene With Color: $16

-Bumper Stickers and Other Items Without Characters: Negotiable
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