I think it's interesting you're linking people to a product they have to buy in order to get to the "industry standard". If you don't make it accessible to everyone easily, it becomes difficult to impose it on others.Rozume wrote:Let me refer you to The Graphic Artists Guild Handbook.I am guessing the simplest answer would be to create an industry standard for prices and quality, but how would someone go around doing that in the first place?
I think this thread as a whole is interesting. The underlying idea here appears to be that, "People who don't charge enough for their work undermine their craft". This is a funny statement, because it takes a field that has so much freedom and in one fell swoop attacks everyone in that field who doesn't comply to an unwritten rule about the "value of the craft".
Pricing art is difficult. You not only have a lot of variables you have to attach a value to, but you also have to ask yourself if it's fair to value those things. After all, we live in a society where it doesn't matter if you spent one month learning how to do your job or if you spent two years doing so: you get paid for doing your job, and your job has a fixed value to it. But an artist, so some people in this thread say, should be charging their clients for all the time they put into studying. An artist, so it seems, is the one job in the world where you charge people not only for the work you do, but also for how long it took you to get the qualifications to do your job. Naturally, this offends some sensibilities and people put question marks next to it.
Artists can be very snobby. They're one of few trades in the world where people will be angry when you're paid exactly how much you value your own work. I remember a game designer advising people to find artists whose asking price is close to what you're willing to pay, instead of getting the more expensive artists whose art are closer to what you want. The result was a lot of artists being very angry and calling for a boycott, because no one should be paying the artists what they're asking for if those artists are just flat-out wrong.
More often than not, this anger is directed at hobbyists. People who want to earn some money on the side doing things they love, and who don't charge professional rates. I can understand that: if I were to write you a story in my spare time, I'd be loathe to charge you as much as the guy who sets aside time in his schedule and who writes for a living. That feels arrogant and disrespectful from my side.
So if you ask me, "How do you feel about artists with low prices?", I'll answer that if they find that fair compensation for their work, I respect that. I will never allow someone's pricing to be a factor in whether or not I will give them work. "I feel like it'd be exploitation so I don't want to work with them" is basically saying that rather than giving them work and pay them less than you feel comfortable with, you'd rather they don't get work. Why work hard for little pay when you can receive nothing for doing nothing? That, more than anything, annoys me: who are you to decide how I should feel, and who are you to decide what I should charge for my craft?
If I'm happy with what I do, and I feel comfortable with myself, I think it's supremely disrespectful to try and make me feel bad about myself, to deprive me from work, and to declare to others that I am somehow terrible for not charging as much as you do. There's a certain argument to be made for keeping art accessible for those with lower dispensable income. I'm OK with that.
There's always be people who feel you get what you pay for and who'd happily pay you more for your work. That's your market. Stop tearing into other people's market and chiding them for what they do. That bloke with $20 to spend isn't suddenly going to triple his budget so he can buy one piece of your art, so you don't need to be concerned about your own profits.