How much my prints worth?

A few days back I wrote a post about pricing of fine art prints. After thinking a bit I decided to do an experiment with upcoming exhibition to find out how much people are willing to pay for my prints. I’m going to do a silent auction with no reserve, no starting price for the prints that are going to be exhibited. I’ll find out just how much people are willing to pay for them (if they are willing to pay for them at all, of cause).

Here are the images that are going to be exhibited:

Palouse at Sunset  
Sketch with a tree and road Three trees by the road Tree

All the prints are on a canvas stretched with gallery wrap 27”x18”.

I’ll let you know results.

How much does a print worth?

As the time of my new show is getting closer the same question of pricing comes up again. What’s the price tag to put on prints?

The discussion about pricing of prints is probably as long as photography itself. Some take approach of costing materials, their time put into producing and framing the print, all other expenses and then adding some mark up. But why the person who looks at prints in a gallery and may buy them would care about how much money and effort photographer put into the print? Wouldn’t the amount potential buyer may spent on a print actually depend on the image itself, on how much it connects with a viewer on a deep emotional level?

Other approach is to pull some high price out of thin air – this is art and thus should cost a lot. It seems to me that it would just alienate viewer. People think that we artists are crazy thinking that someone would pay that price. There is an opinion that value creates a perception of value – the higher you price the print the more likely to sell for high price. That might be true for some limited group of people. I don’t think most of us would fall into that.

What does the history teaches us? If we look back at history how many of famous artists of the past become rich by painting their paintings we all enjoy today and which are considered priceless. If they could not selling their paintings for crazy high prices why would someone pay crazy high prices for a print? Let get real. The print cannot be worth the price tag unless it can be sold for that price.