Just for the art of it... - part 3 of 1 2 3

by Jim Chamberlain Published 01/10/2011


The frames I used on this sale were dark, slightly distressed wood with an old-world feel to them, perfect for their vacation home, built back in the 1930s. BTW I use only the best quality Italian frames on my work. They give my images the finishing touch. I also get 30% of my profit from framing.

Just for the art of it... image 3

Using lesser quality frames will not show your work at it's best and lead your clients to buy unframed work, if at all. They are going to put a good frame on it anyway, better it come from you. The size of the framed work you show is probably the most important piece of the selling process. Having an understanding of the room dynamics of the homes in my area, room size, ceiling heights, square feet of floor space and design style give me clues as to the frames I use, and the size of the finished piece. I have learned for experience - some of my images that never sold as 20''x24'' started selling on a regular basis once I resized them up to 30''x 40''. My images also 'tell' me what size to make them. Some images have detail that needs to be large in order to appreciate the story in the image. Some images are better smaller, to draw the viewer in closer to study it. The viewing distance, is also determined by the room size.

If a piece is being displayed over a couch, it needs to be larger to fit the space, with detail that can be enjoyed from the distance, since it will be difficult to get up close without climbing on the couch.

On the other hand I have images that work well in the kitchen and bedroom, placed on smaller wall sections, that the client will walk right next to and enjoy up close.

How you talk about tour art to your clients and the attitude you have, sets the tone and mood for selling.

Fine art photography is all that I sell. I describe my work, in the selling process, as 'my art', my 'original photographic art', my 'art pieces', my 'fine art images' and my 'original work'. Get the picture! I don't sell photographic prints, or pictures, or photos. Talk about your work as if it belongs in a museum or a top art gallery.

Wall decor sounds like something you might buy at the local hardware or paint shop, maybe something you might find at a 'flea market'. Pretty pictures are available from anyone with a camera, certainly not something a client will spend 'good' money for. Even when I'm selling a volume of images to a client, I do not devalue their status as wall decor.


Now to be honest, in my collection of over 350 images I sell, not every one is a masterpiece. Some of the images work well as small, accent designs.

This doesn't mean they are worth any less.

When I'm asked for a discount, I talk about what I call 'collector status'.

Those clients buying multiple pieces,or have a collection of my work from a previous sale. This helped me put together a selling strategy. Anyone with two or more of my work attains 'collector status' and qualifies for the 'multiple pricing structure', of discount, in simple terms. So when someone asks for a discount, I ask back if they are purchasing more than one piece or do they have other pieces of my art?

I have European clients seeing my work in Florida, but they usually purchase American scenes for their European home, and European scenes for their Florida home.

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1st Published 01/10/2011
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