How to price a piece of ART

Updated: Nov 25

How to price a piece of ART
How to price a piece of ART

Most artists and collectors use their emotions when they are pricing their art.

Pricing artworks with emotions and not by studying the market is a recipe for disaster.

It is essential to put your emotions aside when you are selling a work of art.

If you would like to see your art sell and not collect dust in your studio, take the time to learn how to price art.


Oil paintings are high in demand because of their perfection and realism. These paintings have been the prime center of art in history for hundreds of years.

Materials cost, size, and the artwork quality dictate your price point, not your connection with the artwork.

Condition of the artwork

The First to consider is the condition of the artwork, Rotate the Painting, and check the canvas, the fabric is linen or cotton? is it in a good condition?


The demand and supply rules work here too, check the artist portfolio, an artist portfolio with dozens of paintings that are similar in terms of subjects or colors, or even techniques, chances for any of these paintings to rise in value are absent, scarcity indeed equals value, and versatility of the artist is crucial to limit the supply and create a demand around his artworks.

Who is the artist
Who is the artist

Who is the artist

the artist's ability to deliver his message to the public, to use his tools in a characteristic distinguishable way, and to interact with the community emphasizes his artwork's chances to be a good investment.

Before pricing an original painting have a close look at the artist's portfolio, and inspect the signature of the artist on the canvas, in the artist's portfolio you can see the development of the artist's production through time, does the artist have the potential to rise in value?

The versatility of the artist's portfolio artworks in terms of style (Realism, impressionism, expressionism ….), techniques, and subjects (landscapes, still life, figurative....) indicates the professionalism of the artist, otherwise, the last thing collectors want to do is buying a hobbyist painting.


The quality of the artist’s brushwork … allows the spectator to recreate how the artist moved the brush and applied paints to get the artwork out to light.

Oil paintings are created sometimes in one layer of paint or usually in overlapping multi-layer of paint,

An artist needs to follow the Fat over Lean rule to end up with high-durability oil paintings, by looking closely at the texture of the painting you can make sure there are no cracks in the top layers of the oil painting, otherwise, it is not the right choice to get.


The composition of an oil painting is the most important aspect in the pricing process, indeed we start with composition and end with composition, the artist can skip using a wide palette of colors or remarkable technique and still can produce a masterpiece, but the artist can not skip creating a good composition, otherwise, a painting with poor composition is worthless.

A good composition is one where the artist controls the movement of the viewer's eye, the utilization of the canvas two-dimensional space simply emphasizes the control of the artist over his tools,

Good composition could be done by a number of means, such as reinforcing the focal point with the Rule of Thirds, implied lines, the contrast of value, and selective color saturation.

Conclusion: The more you watch exhibited artworks, the better prepared you will be when it is time to decide on a retail price for original paintings.

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