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Am I Overpricing My Work?

Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/29/2013 - 5:02 AM

I have been looking through submissions on here and noticing a definite 40-70 dollar range on a lot of submissions.. I'll see the occasional $120.00 tag on things and it makes me wonder if I am actually overpricing my work? I mean, I price it based on what I think it is worth, but that is my opinion, and naturally not what someone else might think. I have polled some "regular" people who seem to think the price is fair, but that they simply cannot afford it, but I would be curious to hear the opinion of someone in the field. Is there a general rule of thumb? This is an example of one of my pieces:


Most Recent Reply

Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/11/2013 - 2:56 PM

most of my fractals are symmetrical, and I like to think my colours are pleasing aesthetically, but that is a per person observation.

and I said "one of the only people" - not "the only person" ;)

also new fractals - need to do a bit of touchup on the spaceships but noone seems to have noticed or commented on that yet.

Art PrintsSell Art OnlinePhotography Prints


Posted by: Dan Turner on 02/08/2013 - 10:52 PM

"I seem to be one of the only people utilizing a fusion photoshop/fractal style in that fashion :)"

Hold on there, Shawn...

Photography Prints

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"so the more colourful, the more depth, and the more vivid I believe will be what separates them in the eyes of people."

There are tons of amateur fractals out there and most of them have two things in common: 1) Garish color combinations 2) Symetrical composition. Avoid those two things and you'll be on your way to making art instead of churning out fractals.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/08/2013 - 9:02 PM

you just force it in there, you can make it any size that way. there are many combining many different methods on this site. like one runs it through a water color filter of some kind. i'm just starting on the program, once i understand the mechanics, each will get a bit better. i want to stay away from the random look.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/08/2013 - 8:54 PM

mine take about 5 hours to render.. but it doesn't give me an option to do it at 6200.. it's one resaon I incorporate it with other elements - that and it really allows them to become quite a lot more vivid than they would be on their own - which really gives it that pop factor.. and I seem to be one of the only people utilizing a fusion photoshop/fractal style in that fashion :)

with fractals.. there are a lot of fractals out there.. so the more colourful, the more depth, and the more vivid I believe will be what separates them in the eyes of people. Then again if someone likes it they'll pay for it regardless if the price is right.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/08/2013 - 12:05 PM

if you can make it high then make it high, it never hurts to be too big. unless you run out of ram.

right now i'm experimenting with the sizes in that. i find that oversampling of 1 works fine as long as the radius is around 1 to 1.5. at 6200, it only uses 380 megs or so. i'll be running a new experiment with other sizes. 4000 does make it nice, but i find even at 1500 works. but it depends how much blur you add. 4000 takes like 20 hours, and i don't want it to take that long.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/08/2013 - 11:48 AM

actually I was told by the people that print the artwork here on this site that they print at 100 dpi for their ideal.. that is what mine are set at.. so in order to do a 72 x 45 inch piece I have to make it.. 7200 x 4500. aand that IS the highest size. So I dunno.

And totally.. I wanna hit the corporate market with some billboard sizes for grand foyers and such.. I've always had a fream of seeing my fractal work presented in such a way :)

also there is an.. I think it's called oversample.. the more you up this the less pixelly your pieces will become.. but the more retarded amt of memory it will use. It basically just layers more copies of it over itself so that it has more to work with. I put it at 2 as my pc can't handle more.. filter radius to .7, and quality to 4000, and size to the highest my pc will allow, which I believe is 2400 x 3600.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/08/2013 - 7:33 AM

it's a little oversized now, but it's clear. the max size here is 6200px so you can aim in at around that area for this site, unless he ups it more. i don't know if they will sell bill board sized, but it's best to have it anyway, cuz it doesn't hurt. i finished uploading one batch, but i can't say i like or dislike them. mostly because i can't repeat the results totally yet.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/08/2013 - 5:53 AM

check these out Mike.. just finished them.. took forever as the bigger sizes makes photoshop take FOREVER to load as well as the fractals to take FOREVER to render.. but clicking full zoom in is very much worth it - they are both 72 x 45 inches :)

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Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 5:38 PM

hahaha I know.. some words are just like that :P


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 5:04 PM

the name looks simple and looks right until i type it in, and well, not so much.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 4:19 PM

apophysis? :P

I don't know of any offhand sorry.. I just kinda learned them on my own. Try just finding a basic tutorial of how to use the program.. that helped me in the beginning.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 3:22 PM

you wouldn't happen to know of any guides that explains the basic functions would you? i'm using 7x 15b - i'm not going to spell it the name, i can never spell it right, not even once.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 3:17 PM

no no it doesn't hehehe.. you might wanna go for more a collage look.. render smaller and fill up a space that is 6200 pixels wide.. itll make your render times shorter.

also some of the settings intentionally put in noise or pixels or dust.. that's what their function is. usually to give a blurred effect but on their own it's just dust.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 3:07 PM

i save everything as a png, so i can control the background better. though even after a render i'll still get a star field or static look in the background. it doesn't seem to effect all shapes though.

and i still need to figure out why some take 30min to do and others 14 hours to do. like it just jumps up there suddenly. i think it's has to do with blur modes. each take a while anyway, because i'm doing them at 6200px across. the memory doesn't much like that.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 2:37 PM

some advice:

make a shape first.. any shape.. then go through all of the paramaters and start increasing by 0.1, and notice what that effect does do your shape. Do this up until about 0.5 or 1, and then go back to 0 and go down, -0.1 and observe the same thing.

Do this for all of them. They all alter your shape in specific ways. I generally don't go above 1 for any parameters.

also rotating, sizing, skewing and moving the triangles around will greatly affect your drawing.. as will altering world view if you use the 3d version, as it will actually rotate the parameters in 3d. Fractal making isn`t easy.. that is why most people export random patterns, because in reality they don`t REALLY know what they are doing. I know what I am doing so I can go in with a set goal and create what I want.. but it takes time to be familiar enough with all the commands to do so.

also apophysis has evolved over time so the reason the shapes don`t look the same as the tutorials is because you aren`t using the same version as they are.

also if you export, if you don`t want it on a black background make sure to export transparent as that will allow you to combine it with different elements in a program such as photoshop :)

as for the noise.. exporting it really really high will convert that noise into a smooth looking transition - all fractals look pixally in apophysis until you render them :)

also as you make cool modifications - save parameter and save it a new name in the flame package you created.. this will allow you to go back to any of the creation modifications you made, say if you screwed up, and also allow you to export them all uniquely :)


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 2:34 PM

oh and the other part is how to prevent the noise it makes. i have one that looks like it's in a star field, and i'm hoping they won't complain about it. neat image took some of it out, but it's a bit annoying.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 2:33 PM

so far, i only figured out parts of the program. the problem is, i follow the the tutorials and don't get anything like what they shown, and i added all the numbers in where they said. it's a bit annoying. they do take a while to make, but i have a laptop that's working in the background, i'm experimenting on quality settings right now, verse speed. the problem with the tutorials are - they tell you to put numbers in, but they don't tell you why. i have yet to find lessons as to why i'm doing what i'm doing. as soon as i can find the definition i can make sense of it. right now i can make an interesting thing, but nothing in mind since most of those terms go right over my head.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 2:30 PM

just an example of the fern I am working on - printscreened outta apophysis so no high detail yet:

Art Prints

what one learns with fractals is by slightly altering their original creation they can get a myraid of effects.. I did this for many of my pieces :)

they're mostly the same element manipulated over and over to get different variations then combined together.

It's why I laugh if people say digital work is simply a "click of a button" - if you don't know what you're doing or don't have an eye for design and collage you're gonna be clicking and tweaking for a loooong time :P


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 2:24 PM

fractals can be a headache to generate, esp. if you have something in mind.. it takes a while to get down pat just how all the parameters alter the pixels.. regrettably I appear to be a bit rusty and have forgotten what a lot of them do.. resulting in horrible looking fractals.. but now I seem to have gotten back in the swing of things.. making ferns and centipedes atm.

People like fractals when they are VIVID - the key is vividnes, which is why I bring them into photoshop and incorporate them with other elements to really make them POP :)


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 11:14 AM

i will be experimenting with them right now, the program is a bit complex, so i'll have to post adjusted random things for now, i'm starting to edit the first batch. there seems to be something about fractals people like.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 10:53 AM

yes I know! So I am very excited at the exposure!

And yes all fractals so far.. and yes I am not sure if it is just luck or not yet.. mine are pretty vivid in colour so that might help too. It should be interesting to see if I sell anything other than fractals..

I have also been doing a LOT of networking.. I am part of a lot of big groups on facebook and also have my own fan page.. so.. yeah.. that probably helps.. been joining a lot of groups.. just a lot of selling myself right now :)


Posted by: Wendy J St Christopher on 02/02/2013 - 10:31 AM

You're on a roll with your sales, Shawn -- congratulations!

The great thing about sales is they rank you higher in the FAA search engine. Success leads to success -- all good. :-)


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 10:24 AM

all fractals? i guess people like them.

when you hit it in, you can make quite a bit of money. though i'm not sure what the trick is, sometimes you just get in quick and lucky. if anything it will pay for the $30 membership.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/02/2013 - 10:05 AM

thanks Mike.. I started mine at 10 bucks and increased by 10 from there..and guess what.. sold 2 just this morning - I've made almost 100 bucks in just 3 days! Four pieces sold so far.. I'd say that's not too shabby!


Posted by: Mike Savad on 02/02/2013 - 7:01 AM

i start at $20 and add $10 or so to each one. certain sizes are priced their own way. you have to experiment. usually you won't sell at first if your too high, you shouldn't get greedy. as people start looking for you by name, and you sell more, you can raise them more. like my prices may not make your pieces move, and i know others that charge even more than you original did and have no problems doing that.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Nik Olajuwon Shumway on 02/01/2013 - 11:28 PM

Its totally up to you.Find that line between too high of a price ,whats going to sell and too low of a price.....


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 02/01/2013 - 11:25 PM

that is a good progression rate? should I price by percentage? so say a 8 x 5 is 1/9th of a 72 x 45.. so 8 x 5 would be 20 and 72 x 45 would be 180? I mean technically if one were to go by price per inch that would be ACCURATE...


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/31/2013 - 11:48 AM

they are a bit too low. try like 1/3rd of your original price. like i start mine with a $20 profit and work my way up from there.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/31/2013 - 11:37 AM

I'm now wondering if my prices are too low hahaha...


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 2:43 PM

I noticed that.. just on some of them.. I think those may have already been there.. but imo it doesn't really take away from the piece. I'M HAPPY WITH IT lol..

lets just hope the site is.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 1:15 PM

i think it should print now, though, there are some compression issues around the star bursts.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 12:25 PM

OK! Made a few changes.. updated my photoshop.. made it just a WEE bit bigger to fit within 15 x 24.. the image quality zoomed in looks.. great.. I really can't complain..

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still sad that I won't be able to get the higher sizes but hey, I'll just make em bigger when I make new ones :)

thanks for the help!


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 11:11 AM

yeah good thinking.. like I said before my last sale was 15 x 24.. so I want to at least maintain that.. however I looked at that one, cosmic heart of the universe, and I didn't notice really any significant loss of detail.. it's hard looking at my own piece to judge that.

tbh this one might be better than the rest.. it didn't have a black border around it so I actually shrunk it first to put it around.. if I put a big enough border around it before I expand it I might be able to get that 24" size.. what do you think? As is stands without any border its at 23.333" wide.


yes it makes a perfectly acceptable border at 1730 x 1100 pixels total which brings it just above 24 x 15" without any dpi raising :)

saving it as a png originally probably helped too.

I will reupload the image and let you see for yourself :)

..aww damn it its 15.25 inches..


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 11:05 AM

i bought a laptop as a thing to do when the power goes out. since i bought it... well i don't like getting things that i don't plan to use like a 100% of the time. and i thought it would be a waste. during hurricane sandy we had no power for like 2 weeks. there wasn't anything to do, which is why i got it. but now, with these fractal things, i can create something on that, while i work in the computer. i have no idea how to use that program, but i'm making stuff that looks like something. though they take about 2 hours to make 1. using 6200x4000 something.

if they started at 1600 - that can make a 16" print here, a 10x16. i wouldn't want to sell it for more than that due to a great loss of detail. and when we speak fractals, people expect infinite clarity since that's what fractals are. you might be able to go a size higher, but you would have to double check with management. mostly they don't want returns.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 11:00 AM

yeah in the past I didn't have any target size to work with.. and working on fractals on super huge sizes.. well it bogs down the computer hehehe.. I was always taught that by increasing the dpi of a drawing that you could print it at bigger sizes.. guess I was taught wrong.. but that's ok! I am here to learn and sometimes you gotta bump around early so you know what not to do later :)

so lets look at this again..

I made my fractals to fit my desktop, which is 1680 x 1050 pixels. if I hadn't upped the dpi (from 72 dpi to about 430 dpi) to 10,000 pixels by 6250 pixels, what size do you think would have been an acceptable scaling up without making it unprintable?


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 10:55 AM

the biggest size you can print here in a rectangle is 6200 px across, which makes a 72" print. the other 3 sizes are for panorama. but to get that size, your camera or software has to make it that size, you can't force it. like my camera natively makes 60" prints, but if i increase the size i'll lose some detail. but if i'm making an abstract, or now these fractals, i'll make it that size to start with.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 10:48 AM

yeah you're right.. I could probably lower the size.. I mean.. as you said.. 10,000 pixels wide is.. unnecessary. I just wanted to get the highest prints I could. Can't blame a guy for trying I guess hehehe..


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 10:02 AM

you'll know probably by the end of the day. i think my thing was bought in the morning and about 14 hours later i got the note. and if you don't the note, you'll see when you log in.

if you remove prices for all the large ones, you could probably still sell them small. i would ask contact support, and see what they say would be the largest safest size you can sell. this way it won't be a loss if you say cut it off at 12" or so. the main problem with the star on is, you took an image that was like 2000px and stretched it to 10,000px. if you reduce that to at least 5000px, they might not have a problem. but it's still pretty stretched and compressed looking up close.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 9:57 AM

I'll see if I am told my prints have an issue.. to be told to simply discard artwork.. well.. yeah sorry no hehe.

also cosmic heart of the universe doesn't appear to look bad close up - and at 24 x 15 I don't see there being a quality issue on that one, but we all know I could very much be wrong!

Still I will keep the advice of making higher resolution fractals in mind in future when making work.


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 9:47 AM

the main problem is all the detail is lost up close. i have one in holding, waiting for cortney to tell me it's ok. there was a bit of noise in one spot and the image wasn't that large. i'll have to say is do more and get rid of the old ones. it's a bummer but....

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 9:41 AM

I also polled some artists as to what I should do.. some guy took one of my images and did this to it - I dunno if it's better or not.. I'll let you guys decide - this is the original I have uploaded:

and this is what he did, dunno if you guys can view it or not..

I am not sure what the purpose of putting the frame on the picture is but whatever..

I noticed his enlarged one at least seems to be less pixally..


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 9:38 AM

I sold cosmic heart of the universe.. I sold it at 15 x 24.. I cannot change the size as the original is too small. Already tried.. :/

also I sold it at the low price hehehe.. slashed my price by about 5 times to make that sale.

and yeah fractals can take forever to render at high quality hehe :)

I used to make one whenever I was depressed.. so I've been depressed.. *counts* 11 times hahaha..

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Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 8:09 AM

did you sell it at the high price or the low one?

and which one was it?

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Wendy J St Christopher on 01/30/2013 - 8:00 AM

Congrats on your very quick sale, Shawn -- that's awesome! I hope it works out for you. :-)


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/30/2013 - 7:56 AM

if the image is sold small, it should be ok. i can't tell if the quality is ok with the link you sent. but whatever the native size was you made, should be that size. i'm starting to get into fractals because they are oddly popular, but the larger sizes take like 1-3 hours to render.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 3:22 AM

also just sold a print.. I will try reuploading the older files and see if that works better. Actually I think I will wait and see if I get the cannot print msg and then reupload.

*edit* my fractals were originally done for desktops.. tried uploading the original size but it's not large enough.. I'll just have to see how things go..


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/30/2013 - 3:17 AM

I lowered my prices.. unfortunately I no longer have the photoshops of the original fractals anymore.. although I will admit I upped the DPI to try to get bigger images.. is this quality better?


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/29/2013 - 9:40 AM

also keep in mind, that there are many other people selling fractal art for less, and they sell a lot of it. they will always be seen first and they will be the scale of quality to compare too.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Wendy J St Christopher on 01/29/2013 - 9:18 AM

Hi, Shawn,

Since Mike has already mentioned image quality (for print purposes), here's some info you might find useful:

I hope you can get your quality issues ironed out -- your unique Apophysis images are great.

Regarding your original topic, unless you can bring in buyers already prepared for your pricing structure, I think it's likely you'll price yourself out of contention with your current rates. Even well-known artists rarely command prices like that for Open Edition, unsigned prints.

Best of luck to you if you decide to go for it -- I know I'll be watching to see what happens! :-)


Posted by: Mike Savad on 01/29/2013 - 7:51 AM

you can see all kinds of price ranges, but unless you look at the work that is actually selling, then your fooling yourself along with the others who think that somehow they will sell at that price just because they posted in what is called a gallery. personally i think your prices are way too high. unless your famous or something. what regular people did you poll? the general rule of thumb is, people do want to get something worthy of the money they spend. but they do have a cut off limit. $94 is very high for a print the size of my hand. even if it was a limited edition, i don't think it would go for that much.

as mentioned in the other thread, people often buy a single card and not the smallest, the price difference you have on there is a huge one. and most will go for the card. so instead of a $80 profit, you'll get about a dollar. this is why you see the card price the price it's set at, around $10-15. packs of cards are less. you'll just scare people away with those prices.

your keywords by the way - the site tags on digital art for you, so you don't have to have that phrase after every word.

oh and

Photography Prints
will never print, see the close up? it's totally blurry, they won't print that here. since it's digital, you should be able to create these large in house, you can't just enlarge it. 6200px across will make the largest non panorama crop, yours is way over that. but they will not print it.

so far all the fractals i clicked on - none will print here because they are too soft. too jaggy.

Art Prints
same problem with the sketch. the art is good, but not the presentation, scan it in higher like 2400dpi to keep the detail. you can't enlarge it, it will look terrible up close as this does.

this site has parameters to follow to make a print. if the image is dirty, noisy, blurry, blocky, jaggy, dull, darker than it looks (maybe), they won't print it. you'll get the dreaded note telling you to fix it, upload a new one or the order won't go through.

---Mike Savad


Posted by: Shawn Dall on 01/29/2013 - 6:42 AM

hmm I guess only time will tell hehehe..


Posted by: Gregory Scott on 01/29/2013 - 5:19 AM

That's a rather personal subject. Do you like tightie whities, boxers, or commando?
Try what seems good, and see how it works out for you.
Experimental adjustments over time can help you determine what is optimal, yet fits into your own perception of value.
My very personal rule of thumb is that the physical print, with framing and matting, should cost about the same as the art.


This discussion is closed.