Alright, I'm laying it on the line today, folks ... this isn't going to be easy for me to say (damn pride!) but in all seriousness, you probably saw it way before I did anyway ...
As from today, I'm lowering the prices of my portrait artwork ...
It is the most humbling thing I have done since opening up this portrait business ... not because I've been knocked down into my place (also), but because I finally realised today that my message is more important to me than making money ...
This is, on the one hand a marvellous revelation and on the other one, a bit of a surprise!
I had been ready to wait for those clients who could afford what I was offering ... my prices were reflective of a lifetimes work ... years spent practising yoga and (literally) thousands of pounds (and Euros) spent on education. My process had been carved out with blood, sweat and tears and I wanted to show that through the high end prices of my work.
In my mind there was always a little nagging doubt ... the voice of low self-worth ... could I really justify charging over €1000 for a small piece of artwork? Am I really that good? No, for sure I'm not ... I'm being greedy, overinflated, egotistical ... nobody in their right minds would pay that ... what was I thinking?
The other side argued ... BUT people WILL pay it! You simply have to market to the right audience ... find your tribe ... they are waiting for you ... they want what you are making! Just be patient ... it will happen.
It didn't really help that there is absolutely NO information anywhere in the goddam world (it seems) that tells you step by step exactly how to price your artwork! The clearest information I could find on it was 'look at what other artists are doing and go somewhere in the middle' ... WHAT?! I had seen portrait artists charging €10 000 per portrait and others charging €30! How could I possibly get a mean average when I have that, plus the polar opposites of being relatively unknown and living in one of the richest countries in world to consider?
Other pieces of advice that I received were 'never sell yourself short' and once even 'charge a price so high that you feel slightly uncomfortable telling people ... then you will have hit the sweet spot' and still others offered a more technical view of charging per hour or per sq inch, but never exactly HOW MUCH ... I just didn't know what to do!
So I decided that I would charge per hour for my time ... something that I value over all possessions. It turned out that my time wasn't cheap!
But today I realised ... I actually just want to help people to feel good! I want folks to see themselves reflected in my portraits and think to themselves 'holy hell, I am one SEXY MUTHA!!' ... I want to offer some small relief from the tirade of negative thinking about our bodies that we CONSTANTLY berate ourselves with ... and I want everyone to be able to access this ... not only the affluent. This, for me, would be worth lowering my € per hour rate simply to have the knowledge that loads more lovely peeps would be able to afford a portrait package from me.
I realised that I'm not just selling art ... I am selling a little piece of freedom from self-hatred, a little help with the negative self-talk, a small segment of peoples lives just as they are right NOW, this moment ... I'm offering companionship through the murky waters of acceptance and a helping hand onto the bright, sandy beach of embracing their uniqueness.
This shouldn't only be on offer to people who have endless bags of money but to EVERYONE!
So I decided then ... my prices need to come down ...
Don't get me wrong ... they still aren't CHEAP ... I still value my time over mostly everything else (and I gotta eat, folks LOL) but now they are affordable to most people living the sort of lifestyle who would be considering this kind of a purchase!
I also decided to run a Kickstarter with prices even lower ... this was more of an experiment to see what happened and I don't expect much but if you have read this far and feel like having a look ... check it out HERE!
And the little video I made in my pyjamas below! LOL
So that is my humbling experience this week! There are things bigger than me at work here ... I just gotta try not to get too distracted by bells, whistles and green paper!
Living my truth ... one realisation at a time!
Keep it real lovelies! X