Pricing art commissions

„It's too much money. Sorry.“

This was is a common objection to the question of what is holding you back from commissioning your very own nude painting when asked in an AMA on Instagram.

Let me say a few words about that:

When pricing the images, I always try to find a good balance from the beginning. Between what an original painting by an artist usually costs and the fact that I making art so much that I would prefer to give them away for free. Just to be able to paint for you and to meet your trust and openness.

And of course what value it brings.

Pricing art commissions in Euro, Dollar or Pound.

The hard facts and numbers

"The market" makes it easy for me. There is a simple formula with which you can calculate the price of an original painting: You add the width and the height of the picture. And you multiply this sum by an „artist factor“. So a picture with an artist factor of, say, 10 and in DIN A3 size costs 717 Euros according to this formula: (29.7 + 42) x 10. So simple so good.


But how do you determine the artist factor? It results from various very soft and interpretable things: The artist's experience, his recognition, the painting technique used and so on. So this value is more of a gut feeling. If you are not necessarily a complete beginner - which I will nonchalantly claim for myself - but you are just starting to understand watercolour art as a business, this artist factor is at least 5. According to this, the most popular format of 30 x 40 cm should be at a price of 350.00 Euros. But anyone who has my price table in mind (thanks, Superfans!) knows: I offer this for 230.00 Euros? That corresponds to a factor of 3.28571. So much for that ...

But why only 230.00 Euros then? Because I really want to do it. And I'm also quite transparent about the fact that I don't have to live off it (yet). The idea is to earn a substantial part of my living with it for the foreseeable future. But not yet and not with these formats. (More on that soon. This much I can reveal: it's going to be ... big.) So I lowered the price until it hurt me a little bit to let a picture I've worked on for many hours and which I've probably also taken to my heart by then, go for that less of a price. (Yes, it always hurts a little to hand over the watercolours to DHL. But I know they are in good hands with you. Sigh.)

(Please be noted that the prices will rise in September. I will inform you about the new numbers sometime in August. Mainly the sizes will shift one tier up. So a 24 x 32 cm watercolour will then be €230 instead of €185 and so on.)

The value it (hopefully) brings

But what real value apart from money does commissioned nude art bring?

This is an even tougher one. Because it's so individual. I can only guess. But buying a nude art personally for you is probably a once in a lifetime invest. And I mean invest literally. You get something to remember this time of your life. How you looked, how it felt. Who you where. It's hopefully way more than just paint and paper. It's you. This is value that is so different from money it probably can't be measured. And it's surely not on me to do that. I just wanted to put these thoughts into your mind when considering purchasing original commissioned art.

Thankfully, I would like to conclude by saying that you also write to me again and again that you know very well that my art is worth it. And that some of you prefer to save a little more before commissioning. That's great. Let me know when you are ready.

Thank you

Thank you for taking the time to read this. And of course for your interest in my art. Besides all that this post is about, that is the main drive for me. Thank you for being here.

And if you have any questions: always ask. Hit me at markus@freise.de or via WhatsApp/Telegram on +4915112549129.

Greetings from Bielefeld
Markus