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Submitted on
October 10, 2013


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So this is a thing!…  

So.  Your friendly neighborhood Auntie Toerning is going to step in for a second here.  Firstly, I think it's very groovy and awesome that DA is establishing their own marketplace.  It's a scary world out there of work for hire and it's totally awesome that DA artists now have this stepping stool to practice professional habits in the same way that we practice artistic skills!


I would like to take a moment to discuss the rates here.  I was just exploring quickly, and saw on the navigation on the left "price," and, like every other human on the planet, clicked on the most expensive first, thinking to myself "wow, good for DA to promote work that costs $1,000!" and wanting to see what that work would be.

Well.  Boy was I wrong.  In fact the prices are organized by Points.  Remember when you were a kid, and the dog peed on the Monopoly box, and so you drew dollar signs on a bunch of scraps of paper and used that for the money?  Points bear more resemblance to those scraps than to actual currency.

Quick conversion here: 1-29 points category?  (prices are organized in ascending categories.)  One Honest American Dollar is about 80 points.  Meaning the entire 1-29 points category is work for under a single dollar.  UNDER A SINGLE DOLLAR.  On the other end of the scale (not really,) the highest category is 1,000+ points.  1,000 points is, pardon my math, about $12.50.  This is not the maximum an artist can charge, no not at all, but it IS the HIGHEST CATEGORY, meaning it's setting a precedent and boundaries that no one's going to want to exceed.

Let me reiterate.  The most DA is suggesting you pay for a commission is $12.50.

If this system works for you, if it gives you joy and you are producing work and getting paid and being happy, there is NOTHING wrong with that, I mean that completely honestly.  If it works, that is fantastic.  I just needed to state for the record, for the sake of my conscience, that I think DA has a responsibility to its artists to set an example.  This is going to be the first encounter with art as a commodity for a lot of artists, and it is going to give them ideas about how this works and teach them habits and every other thing.  And I think that the example being set is, frankly, shameful.

I'm not going to go into a lecture about pricing your art.  I just wanted to have a "let's be real" moment.  My inner goddess of indignant vitriol is satisfied. 

Be safe; be happy; get money; get paid.
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JohntheMurray Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Thanks Auntie =P
hungerartist Featured By Owner Nov 5, 2013
I wouldn't sell my art for any less than 9000 points.
helloheath Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
I honestly think that if any artist is satisfied getting paid that little...than there is something really wrong with that.
Not only does it devalue their work and effort, but it brings the entire market down. "Clients" approach me and other artists all the time with ridiculous demands about pricing because they see this type of undercutting run rampant. I understand that a beginner is not going the charge the same as a seasoned pro, but >$1 really is just abhorrent and a slap in the face to the craft IMO.
elizabethzelia Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Student General Artist
I remember when they first announced this concept for dA and everyone (and their mother) literally had an opinion on this (and this is more ridiculous than we imagined). But, everyone was just making this an argument about how to price your work blah blah, but another issue (and I think it's the main issue in this specific case) is that this is about dA making the most money and self-promoting their points/membership system (equaling big $$$ for them). They're also burying their graves even deeper because their pricing system, by having the highest commission price at $12.50, is targeting youth/pre-teens and making the site more youth-oriented (as it seems to have been going down that route these past few years) and driving away older users to the (better, more efficient) wondaland that is tumblr!
Ashcat Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Professional General Artist
Yah the prices they are setting are just ridiculous. You spelled it out perfectly.
TuesdayNightCompany Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013
I agree, the price category settings are poorly thought out.
And I hate points.
sweet-pea-soup Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Krizy Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2013  Professional General Artist
I'm on the fence about the whole points system and point commissions in general (although I suppose it's good for those who don't have means to purchase their own points or no means to pay for commissions with money)... Having said that, I initially thought this new commissions shop thing is a good concept, but I think I'll stick to advertising my services in the forums and be in control myself, to be honest. As for the commissions shop, I won't judge nor comment on what artists should be charging for their services, but I suppose those lower prices like 100 points or w/e are fine for hobby artists perhaps, but for the artists who rely on commissions as a way of earning income to help them survive, it's simply not possible. So, I think (other than the 20% the artist loses), this new system would probably only be good for those who prefer to offer/buy point commissions.
Gabbi Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
I think the whole "commission culture" on dA is a big joke, and dA themselves doesn't make things better.
People should charge more for their art, but with everyone around them talking 5 or 10 dA points for a fullbody commission, a lot of people think that it's the norm.
And that's so fucking sad.

It  hurts the business as a whole, and I have pretty much hated dA's commission widget since it appeared.
The first points roof in that widget was 4000 points.... I think that says a lot of how dA thinks commissions should be done (and of course they take 20% of that as well...)
aspiringauthor20 Featured By Owner Oct 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
You can price it over 1000 points, it's just a shame that they're accepting such low point ranges for commissions, which makes it seem like it's ok to those who don't believe their art is worth much :(
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