I just read a thought provoking article on EmptyEasel entitled “Why Sell Limited Edition Prints? Art Should be for Everyone!”. The article challenges the practice of making limited edition prints and says that prints should be unlimited and cheap so that everyone can enjoy art.
I certainly support the idea that there should be affordable art in the market place so that anyone and everyone can buy something to add some beauty to there home or wherever. However, on the other hand I defend the artists who need to make a living.
I support a model where art “products” are offered in different price ranges to different markets. Want an original? Pay the full price. Want an almost original? Buy an expensive numbered giclee reproduction. Want one better? Have a signed, touched up and numbered giclee. No money, but want something beautiful to put on your wall? Buy a digital print.
I have been told in the past that if you offer digital prints then that cheapens your art, because people won’t want to pay more for the quality giclees. I’m not in the print market, because I don’t have the time and I need to be there because I make my living from my day job. So while I don’t have any personal experience, that doesn’t make sense to me. Discerning people will always pay more for a quality product.
My art is priced cheaply. However, when I show my art to people it is still often more than they can spend. I offer the option of digital prints for the Israeli market (sorry, it’s in Hebrew and yes, I know I need to update the number of prints offered).
Please don’t forget the customers who don’t have big budgets. It’s not altruistic, it’s good business.