How Much to Charge for Digital Art Commissions?

How Much to Charge for Digital Art Commissions?

Listen up, digital artist extraordinaire. Three words should be etched into your creative soul: know your worth. The days of the starving artist are long gone, and it’s high time you got paid what you deserve for your labor and expertise. 

But in a highly competitive and global marketplace, it’s easy to see why some clients might expect a bargain. How do you confidently assert your worth as an artist without driving customers away? How do you know when to raise your rate—or realize if you’re charging too much?

The answer is a three-pronged approach: understand the market, carve out a niche where you can thrive, and recognize your value. Let’s explore these three concepts to learn what it takes to price yourself right and avoid selling yourself short.

Understanding the Digital Art Market

Before you can put a price tag on your work, it’s important to scope out the competitive landscape. Peer into other artists' portfolios with similar offerings and see what they’re charging. The market value of digital art can vary wildly depending on factors such as style, subject matter, and niche. Pay careful attention to other artists' rates and read customer reviews. Are they happy with the timeframe? Did they feel like the value was fair?

Of course, it’s not just about checking out fellow artists’ sales strategies. You also need to consider the demand for your particular style or genre. Are you creating commissions for fans of a popular setting or franchise, such as Dungeons & Dragons character portraits? Or are you working in a more specialized field with a tiny but dedicated audience? Understanding the potential demand can inform your prices and your choice of platform, which pieces you showcase in your storefront, and your approach to marketing tools like social media.

Finding Your Niche

Carve out a space for yourself in the digital art marketplace by identifying an in-demand art form that you can tackle consistently. As much as we all want to make our bread and butter creating things that appeal to us personally, commissions often come with input from your patron. For example, while you may not be a massive fan of a particular video game, it’s important to be prepared for a client who would love you to sketch one of its main characters. If you’re open and ready to apply your skills flexibly, you’ll be able to find plenty of satisfying artistic opportunities in nearly any piece your clients would like. 

Recognizing Your Value

Your expertise as an artist, the time you’ve spent mastering your technique, and the wealth of knowledge you’ve cultivated over the years all contribute to the price you can command for commissions. If you’re just starting out, you might need to dip your toes in with lower prices to attract clients and build a portfolio.

But, and that’s a big BUT, you probably wouldn’t be shocked to learn that many artists chronically underestimate their value. A good rule of thumb is to look at the range of prices out there in your target market and set yours somewhere in the upper third. That’s a reasonable starting point to make yourself look desirable without pricing your art out of the market, and you can always adjust from there.

Resources for Mastering Digital Art Commission Prices

Cubebrush provides a constantly growing vault of information to help you level up your skills both on the canvas and in the marketplace. If you’re struggling to harness the business potential of your artistic talents, check out the tutorials below:

Art Commission Specialist

From an artist who has truly “walked the walk” in the world of commissions, this tutorial package includes in-depth lessons on how to land your first gigs, price yourself appropriately, and keep the business coming. With a money-back guarantee and direct email to the creator, there’s zero reason to delay giving this tutorial a chance.

Personal Commission Tutorial for Artists

This 7-lesson tutorial has something for everyone, including experienced commission artists. Tackle tough challenges like drafting terms of service, keeping a budget, and customer contact. While the tutorial primarily focuses on illustration commissions, it will be helpful for all kinds of digital artists.

Art Business - How to Promote Your Art

This insightful guide walks you through finding an audience and perfecting your niche. This tutorial will help you harness your chosen space, land clients, and increase traffic to your digital storefronts by showing you the fundamentals of filters and tags on various platforms. Veteran sellers and business novices can both find helpful tips inside this PDF.

Keep Calculating How Much to Charge

For digital art commissions, the market will always be in flux. Pricing your art is a delicate balance between the value you place on your time and the need to build a strong presence. By analyzing the market space, you can create a successful business without feeling forced to accept unfair offers.

As you expand your digital art business knowledge, Cubebrush can support you with its wealth of resources and thriving marketplace. While you work on commissions, you can easily open a store on Cubebrush and share your bespoke art assets or expertise with a wider market. Or, drop by Cubebrush as a customer to improve your skills and increase the value of your work. 

As you paint your path to a booming business, don’t forget: know your worth. It’s up to you to get the credit you deserve!