How To Sell Original Artwork Online

hi guys Melanie here at vision city

design studio I want to thank you for

listening or watching today and in this

episode I want to talk to you all about

how to sell original artwork online now

for those of you who have never met me

or you don't know who I am again my name

is Melanie and I'm the founder of vision

city and I've been running my own design

service business for over 10 years now

about five years into that process I

also introduced art products which I

sell on Etsy I personally sell

black-and-white illustrations that I

have printed on beautiful papers that

I've been selling to customers all over

the world

now one of the things that have happened

in the process is I've also had the

opportunity to get licensing deals and

wholesale deals so as of now I've had

the opportunity to sell in Ross I've sold in Land of

Nod in their stores across North America

and I've also had wonderful

opportunities to be featured in a

variety of live events like trade shows

and craft fairs and I find that I've

learned a lot of different things in a

whole bunch of different ways and so

that's really why nowadays what I do is

I also teach artists who also want to

sell their art online and I teach them

through things like this through this

video or audio podcast I also teach

through webinar and I have a whole bunch

of awesome courses as well but in this

specific video I want to talk to you

specifically about how to sell your

original artwork to customers all around

the world

now when I say original artwork what I'm

talking about are things that are really

one-of-a-kind so maybe you are a painter

or maybe you do hand lettering on wood

or maybe you paint you know watercolors

on canvas whatever it might be if it's

an original piece that you want to sell

a lot of times people are nervous how do

I do that online you know maybe you're

familiar with people selling their

prints or their greeting cards or other

things that they might make but you

might think but can people do that

online if it's actually an original

piece of art and I just want to say to

you yes you absolutely can and that's

why I want to make sure to really focus

on this too

because a lot of people ask me this

question over my webinar or on my

Facebook group which is called the Etsy

artist dream team by the way if you want

to check that out

so you can actually join my webinar at

vision city dot biz forward slash sell

your art webinar so the first things

first one of the number one things you

need to do when selling original artwork

is to properly photograph it now I know

this seems like an obvious thing but

this might be a the one thing that's

causing people to stumble or to shy away

a lot of people might say yeah but I

don't know how to take photos properly

of art and I'm hoping that I can share a

few tips with you right now

so first things first whenever you're

photographing any artwork you want to

make sure you're using natural daylight

okay now if you're watching this video

I'm literally in a room right now in my

office where I have natural daylight I

have daylight coming in through windows

however above me there's obviously a

roof right and so that's the kind of

lighting you want to use when you're

photographing your own original artwork

I would suggest doing it indoors however

you could also do this in an opened door

garage or another area however you could

also deal with like wind and things like

that so that could actually become a bit

tricky but if you're just photographing

inside of a room like this one I've got

different windows opened but my lighting

over me is even and so for my purposes

right now giving this video or audio if

those of you listening over to the


there's really even light okay I don't

have any lights on me I don't have any

flashes going off it's just even

lighting that's the kind of light you're

gonna really aim for okay so that's

number one when it comes to photography

number two a lot of people say well I

don't have a professional camera well I

want to let you know that nowadays the

smartphones that we are using a lot of

times they're good enough quality you

basically want to make sure that the

photos that you're taking are going to

be able to be viewed clearly if somebody

zooms in so say if somebody's looking at

your your artwork on their phone you

want them to be able to zoom in to your

artwork to see the quality and the


so as long as you're able to offer that

and depending on where you're selling

online the dimensions may change so

you're gonna want to find out and that's

brings me to my second point which I

won't go there yet but depending on

where you're selling online they may

have different dimensions requirements

for the actual photographs that you're

submitting of your pieces so you're

gonna want to know what those are so

that you can make sure you can produce

that with whatever camera are using now

for those of you who are comfortable

with a digital SLR or a nice you know

professional camera then hey go for it

absolutely use that you're gonna want to

photograph your artwork straight on

basically as though you and your camera

lens are central and your artwork is

straight on that artwork is not tilted

up or down it is as 90 degrees as

humanly possible and you're gonna want

to just align your your-your-your

camera's viewfinder in a way so that

everything's squared on I know this is a

bit challenging but that's the way I

would suggest to do it if it's got a

slight tilt to it I don't think it's

gonna be a huge deal but that's just

something to be aware of if you're

selling a canvas piece then obviously

you're gonna be just using the canvas

maybe you can lean against a wall you

can hang it on a wall on a nail if you

want I would just really suggest keeping

the surrounding areas fairly simplified

maybe having it on a mantle maybe you

could have like a little candle or

something beside it for props I do that

sometimes but I would keep the actual

photograph fairly simple and clean so

that people can really focus on your

artwork and if you are selling say

something that can be framed then I

would suggest that you frame it always

remove glass from frames when you're

photographing things I know it sounds

like oh yeah I've never even thought

about that right it's one of those

things you don't ly think about it until

you're actually doing it but glass is

going to create all kinds of glares that

are going to distract people from your

beautiful artwork so you're gonna want

to just take the glass out pop your art

into the frame and then you're ready to

go so I hope that gives you guys some

ideas when it comes to photographing


art in original form obviously be very

careful with it and this is the one

piece that you're selling of this thing

so you're gonna want to make sure that

it's ready to go

okay so let's go on to the next thing

here the next thing on my list when it

comes to selling original art would be

choosing your online selling platform

now there are so many different selling

platforms nowadays you know I began

selling on Etsy I also have expanded to

selling on Shopify which I love you

could sell on Amazon on eBay on all

kinds of different platforms you can

also sell on your own personal website

and there's pros and cons to all of

those one of the pros to selling on a

platform that's already established is

that a lot of times they may have a

built in audience for example on Etsy

they have a whole bunch of people you

know millions people that are already

there shopping and so as you are adding

to that community then you're going to

be kind of organically discovered yes

you do need to still really work hard to

get yourself get awareness of your

actual art through the Etsy system which

I talk about in my courses and all kinds

of different webinars and things however

it's also something to think about

though do you want to be in a place

where there's already a community of

buyers or do you want to really more

establish your own online selling

platform on your website which is

totally cool as well it just means

you're gonna have to do a little bit

more work when it comes to marketing so

that you're not off alone on the

internet in the little corner of the

internet alone okay you don't want to be

have this beautiful website that

nobody's coming to so it just means you

have to work that much harder to get

people to come to your website in order

to go ahead and see the products that

you're offering to buy them now you can

do that a lot of that through online

marketing through social media is

obviously a great great way to bring

awareness to everything that you're

offering Pinterest is awesome

so those are different ways you can do

that but I talked a lot about that in my

other courses in webinars so I won't go

too much into that at this point now the

third thing you're gonna want to think

about is your descriptions as you're

writing descriptions for an original art

piece you're going to want to really

highlight the fact that this is an

original it's a one of a

find there's never gonna be another one

of these you're also gonna want to

highlight the materials you have used

the different types of materials may be

different materials or papers or

canvases may be you hand stretched it

yourself you know you're gonna want to

really highlight how how much how much

value is in this one piece okay so your

description is going to be very very

important when it comes to selling an

original piece of art you obviously the

number one thing you're highlighting is

the fact that this is an original art

piece and so that will just drive the

value up through the roof because

there's never going to be another one of

these originals and so that is something

that's very important obviously in your

description you also want to bring in a

lot of other things that are important

like key words things that are finding

words that are associated with what

you're selling so things that people are

already going to be typing in you're

gonna want to add all those words in

your descriptions but that goes more

into SEO topics so I will leave that as

is for now the next thing you want to

think about is price okay so as I just

mentioned there is so much value in an

original art piece okay you're gonna

want to be unashamed and unabashed about

actually selling this art piece at a

high price now when you're creating an

original art piece you are aware of how

much time and energy and you know

creativity goes into that one piece if

you're selling that one piece and it's

no longer going to be in your possession

you have to be willing to price that

higher obviously than you would if

you're selling prints so I would suggest

research research research find out what

other people are doing and selling their

art pieces for maybe the same sizing the

same materials the same genres maybe the

same themes to the same customer type so

maybe you are wanting to do art pieces

that are music themed for example and

maybe there's a certain crowd of people

that are really into that style and if

that's the case you're gonna want to

really research what are those customers

willing to spend what are they already

spending so that you're not going to

praise way too high or way too low

obviously you're gonna really also price

based on quality so the quality of the

actual art piece the materials paper is

the paints all the different things

you're using so that you know you're

selling a high quality piece you're

gonna want to sell for a higher price

again when you're pricing an original

you have to always have in mind yes you

want to sell so you don't want it to be

like outrageously priced but also number

two you want it to be sold well and to

sell it once so that you're not when

it's gone it's gone it's my point okay

another option when it comes to selling

your original artwork is also to sell

prints now I know people have mixed

feelings about this and I've had people

ask me about this over webinars and I've

offered this suggestion and it really

helped them so I wanted to be sure to

mention this idea maybe you're selling

original watercolor paintings and you

sell those for you know a couple hundred

dollars each but maybe people that love

your style they don't have that price

they don't have that much money to spend

on one piece to hang in their home maybe

they only have you know $30 or $40 so

what you can also do is you can also

create prints as well so maybe you make

a limited edition or supply of prints

from each of your original pieces so

maybe again let's let's say we do

watercolors on beautiful watercolor

paper and those sell for a few hundred

dollars each and I want to also sell

prints what I would do is I would

digitize that original piece now for

those of you who want to know how to

digitize original artwork I have a whole

video all about that so I won't go all

into that again or I also have a podcast

you're listening to this on podcast but

you can listen to that it's on the art

business podcast or it's here on my

youtube channel but it's all about how

to digitize original art I suggest that

you watch that because if you digitize

your original art you bring it in to

your computer then you can you know crop

it maybe edit it if need be and get it

sized for prints

and that way maybe you are doing art

fairs and craft markets for example in

person and you might have some of your

originals there but maybe the people at

that fair you know that maybe the

budgets may be a bit lower and they may

not have you know $300 for example to

spend on one piece maybe they only have

30 to 40 dollars okay so you can offer

people different price points so that

you're really serving more than just one

group or dynamic of customer so this is

something that I find is really helpful

and I don't do personally original

artwork per se

obviously everything I do is my own

however I sell prints but if I did do

you know paintings and originals

I would definitely also offer a print of

that maybe you can also do say numbered

and signed versions of the prints and

that might even increase the value even

more so say you have a very limited

supply maybe only 20 or 15 of each

painting for example and then that way

you can sign them a number of them and

they could still be have a lot of value

to the customer especially if you

already have safe following on Instagram

or Pinterest and you're developing a

really good following of people and this

could be a really good suggestion for

you guys so I hope that you've enjoyed

this episode on how to sell original

artwork online I hope it's really serves

you guys and for those of you who have

not ever watched my webinar I want to

encourage you to check it out vision

city dot biz forward slash sell your art

webinar thanks again guys I'll see you

next time