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View Full Version : How do you feel about a gallery buying your work off ebay?


PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 06:28 PM
I sold two of my tiny paintings last week to a woman in the UK.

I believe she owns a gallery. When she bid on my paintings, she had one ebay name, then when she paid me, she had changed it. I won't post it here, don't want to offend anyone.

Anyway...I searched the internet and found a gallery in the UK, with the same name. Not sure it is or not...but could very well be.

She has purchased many paintings recently on ebay..for next to nothing.

I know it is not illegal to resell a painting you buy. I just feel strange out it.

Now that I think about it.....this has been discussed on here before, forgive me for being repetitive.

andymathis
01-23-2005, 06:43 PM
Once you sell a painting, I think its the owners right to do whatever they want to with it- donate it, sell it, give it away, etc.- even resale it on ebay.

conrad00
01-23-2005, 06:52 PM
It's a tricky one... :) I can understand feeling a bit strange about it, but overall I think I'd probably see it as a positive. I'd think well at the very least a sale is a sale and although they'll be charging more than I got, that would also apply to a gallery that was representing me. I think the sense of loss of control over things might get to me slightly but, as you say, there's no law against buying and reselling a painting so may as well just look at the plus side :D :D

DevineCreative
01-23-2005, 06:55 PM
It's happened to me too. I think that you really have to let go of your paintings if you plan to sell them. We never know what will happen to them. We hope they will be charished and not used to line a bird cage, but who knows? If you want to sell to actual collectors, raise your prices. The galleries are less likely to buy and the ones who do will are likely display them.

Pamela

PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 07:18 PM
Thanks everyone

Andy...I know its theirs to do with what they want....I was just talking about how it makes you feel.

Pamela....I sometimes wonder If I will run across any of mine in a garage sale... :D :D

Thanks Conrad......a friend at work also told me to think of it as positive. At least more people will see my work, if she does put it in a gallery. Then one of them can use it to line their birdcage....lol.

sandge
01-23-2005, 07:32 PM
I would love a gallery to buy my work off ebay. Saves all this sale or return nonsense and having to find the gallery, persuade them to take you on, frame the stuff and transport it.

Galleries this way, please! All welcome! The more the merrier! :D

theIsland
01-23-2005, 07:48 PM
I don't mind at all when a gallery buys to resell. I avoid gallery contracts because I don't want to be confined to one, but if a gallery wants to buy my stuff outright with no further obligation from me, that's fine. They're out there promoting my art, and I owe them nothing. What's not to like about that? :) Some of the gallery buyers on eBay pay very realistic wholesale prices, and if the artist sells well, they keep coming back for more. Get a couple of those competing against each other, and prices go up.

The only thing I miss is having a direct connection to the buyer, because I like that from both a personal and a business standpoint. If the buyer can buy from me directly, they'll be able to buy twice as much as they can if they buy through a retailer, and they'll feel a personal connection to me, so they're more likely to promote me to their friends.

Noma

idahogirl
01-23-2005, 07:54 PM
I would love a gallery to buy my work off ebay.
The only thing better would be two or more galleries in bidding wars :D

Dee

sandge
01-23-2005, 07:58 PM
The only thing better would be two or more galleries in bidding wars :D

Dee
What a wonderful thought! :D

andymathis
01-23-2005, 08:00 PM
Here's another thought. . . by having work seen and sold on Ebay, has anyone obtained gallery representation this way? Or is it a double edged sword, where galleries are content to remain somewhat anonymous and continue to buy work directly off ebay.

bepos
01-23-2005, 08:01 PM
Patti,

I have this one ebay customer that buys a lot of my stuff. She likes my brighter more whimsical paintings. I often wonder if she has a store or gallery. I don't care if she buys and sells them. But I would love to know just out of curiousity.
I am always curious to know where my paintings are being displayed. But I guess I never will :crying:

PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 08:02 PM
Thanks Sandge, Dee and Noma

You all have great points. If the paintings do sell for her and she comes back for more.

Even tho she is buying things cheap, I did get more than I asked for on my minis from her. Even had her bid against another.

She also bought one of Beverlys paintings....maybe it will be something good after all.

I think maybe what Noma said about not having a direct contact with the final buyer, is what was bugging me. I have made some great friends of a couple buyers.

Thanks again all!

PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 08:04 PM
Thanks Andy, thats a thought

Hey Cindy!! Good to see you here in the forum.

PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 08:07 PM
I agree Cindy....I would love to see where my paintings go, but guess we can't have it all. lol. I haven't even seen too many of my paintings framed.
Especially my watercolors, except the ones I have kept for myself.

ps...Sandra...off the subject a little. I want to get my painting of yours framed. What do you suggest for mat and frame?

sandge
01-23-2005, 08:32 PM
ps...Sandra...off the subject a little. I want to get my painting of yours framed. What do you suggest for mat and frame?
Wonderful! :D Personally, I like a double window matt - I'm looking at one on my wall now that has a white inner matt and a cream outer. And I always go for a gilt/goldy sort of frame. The style depends on what's available - simple but not too thin. And I do like to visit a frame store and play about with all the matt and moulding samples to see what would suit. Good luck! :D

PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 08:39 PM
Can you post a picture of it hanging on your wall Sandra?

sandge
01-23-2005, 08:58 PM
Can you post a picture of it hanging on your wall Sandra?
Here you go. Not the best photo I've ever taken in my life but then it is past my bedtime! :)


http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/23-Jan-2005/1073-P1240002.jpg

PMurphy42
01-23-2005, 09:07 PM
Oh..that is beautiful...I love the wide mat.

Thank you so much.

wayfarer
01-23-2005, 11:33 PM
I've had very open relationships with galleries, purchasing my works. My quandary about it was undercutting the gallery by continuing to sell at auction prices. I'm open about this and do not sell larger works at an auction price (ca 40% off of BIN). I have a few that I suspect are galleries, but that's fine. I prefer a direct sale than a consignment. Rather have the cash up front.

Chris

gnu
01-24-2005, 12:44 AM
the only one I've so far sold on auction(just starting out at this action stuff) is a framer who wants to buy my art regularly(If he likes the original, a set of minis) I'm wrapt..If I get to sell regularly fine, and like I said to him, I'll know my own art anywhere and it will benefit us both..(as long as I get a profit too)...he will sell it as mine in any case..
I will hear from him in a couple of days when he receives the art..:D

PMurphy42
01-24-2005, 02:42 AM
Congrats Gill!! Are you selling on ebay?

PMurphy42
01-24-2005, 02:46 AM
I remember now....you painted the beautiful purple flowers.

gnu
01-24-2005, 03:53 AM
thank you! :) twice!! :D
It was on Trade Me, an NZ site..
I am really surprised, because I think my art is different to others, but in a realistic way(expressionist often, but not abstract)there are times I'd love to paint in the style of lots of other artists, so I'm always surprised that pple like it, it seems not unusual enough..does that make sense ??(PS I'm not trying to fish for more compliments, none expected:D:D)
this is a really interesting question to one just starting out in the action world!!

PMurphy42
01-24-2005, 05:20 AM
Well...from someone still trying to find her "style" I think my paintings are boring too. But I luck out occassionally and do well.

I seem to do better with my portraits, which I love to do, but like you...I want to paint like other styles I see.

I can't seem to stick with one style, or subject. I guess thats not a bad thing, unless you want people to recognize your work. I figure in about 10 years or more, I might finally settle into a groove.

My friends tell me......but since you can paint many different things, isn't that good?

No one would know my work, if my name wasn't on it. :D :D

Anyway....did I just make any since?? It's 4 am here....and I'm still wide awake. Physically anyway. :D :D

sandge
01-24-2005, 07:33 AM
Well...from someone still trying to find her "style" I think my paintings are boring too. But I luck out occassionally and do well.

I seem to do better with my portraits, which I love to do, but like you...I want to paint like other styles I see.

I can't seem to stick with one style, or subject. I guess thats not a bad thing, unless you want people to recognize your work. I figure in about 10 years or more, I might finally settle into a groove.


That's funny. I think the same.

I don't think I have a style. I see work I admire and wish I could do something equally interesting. And although I am settling with the figure for the moment, I do get torn in other directions and wish I had time to paint other subjects.
:rolleyes: :D

stupot
01-24-2005, 07:36 AM
After a somewhat dry period on Ebay I was happy when 3 of my paintings were purchased by a coffee shop which is incorporating a gallery within it in Glasgow..I was offered a sale and return on future pieces of work but I declined prefering to have them bought outright...Obviously they are making more money on them but its a sale and I'm getting exposure in bonny scotland.

stupot

sandge
01-24-2005, 08:25 AM
After a somewhat dry period on Ebay I was happy when 3 of my paintings were purchased by a coffee shop which is incorporating a gallery within it in Glasgow..I was offered a sale and return on future pieces of work but I declined prefering to have them bought outright...Obviously they are making more money on them but its a sale and I'm getting exposure in bonny scotland.

stupot
Also, it's a guaranteed sale. They're taking the risk they might not be able to sell it on, rather than you.

Welcome, stupot. :)

PMurphy42
01-24-2005, 08:58 AM
Hi Stupot......congrats on those sales. Would love to see some of your stuff.

Sandra....I would know one of your paintings anywhere. When I posted earlier, I was thinking of you, Nina, and Te....to name a few.

LOL.....guess we all have the same feelings at times.

Laura Tasheiko
01-24-2005, 09:29 AM
I had a local gallery in a very nice coastal resort community find me on ebay. This will be our third summer working together. He still occassionally buys paintings directly from me during the winter (needs to keep his artists fed during the down times!), and, and knowing that I have bills to pay every month all year, he has no problem with me continuing to sell on ebay because we are marketing to different art buying populations. What I get $100 for online, he gets $1200 for!, but I need to sell all year, not just in the summer. I could use a few more gallery directors like him! L :)

andymathis
01-24-2005, 10:13 AM
That's excellent Laura- I think-
I could see where that could go south on you in a hurry- assuming the work is similar, same sizes, etc.- if those people, who have purchased your work in a gallery, cant see a difference between what is sold online and what is sold in the gallery, they will get mad-both at you and the gallery.

There was a letter to the editor of a framing magazine years ago from a picture framer who had a similar situation. Lady A purchased a signed limited edition print,assume it was "Mr. Lite Paintr", at a gallery show. She brought it in to be framed. While she was there, Lady B came in with the exact same print, purchased off tv, and announced what a great buy it was at x dollars. Lady A just melted, according to the framer. She quietly packed her print back in the tube and left, embarrassed and humilitated.

Do feed everyone, but be careful. :)

Laura Tasheiko
01-24-2005, 10:52 AM
That's excellent Laura- I think-
I could see where that could go south on you in a hurry- assuming the work is similar, same sizes, etc.- if those people, who have purchased your work in a gallery, cant see a difference between what is sold online and what is sold in the gallery, they will get mad-both at you and the gallery.

There was a letter to the editor of a framing magazine years ago from a picture framer who had a similar situation. Lady A purchased a signed limited edition print,assume it was "Mr. Lite Paintr", at a gallery show. She brought it in to be framed. While she was there, Lady B came in with the exact same print, purchased off tv, and announced what a great buy it was at x dollars. Lady A just melted, according to the framer. She quietly packed her print back in the tube and left, embarrassed and humilitated.

Do feed everyone, but be careful. :)

I'm not too worried the hypothetical situation discribed in the letter to the editor will actually occur. If the picture framer (or any gallery) wanted an 'exclusive' on the prints (or paintings), he would have to be able to prove and guarantee he could sell enough to warrant that exclusive representative status. Most won't and can't. They just make unreasonable demands on artists who don't know any better. L

sherina
01-24-2005, 05:16 PM
Here's another thought. . . by having work seen and sold on Ebay, has anyone obtained gallery representation this way? Or is it a double edged sword, where galleries are content to remain somewhat anonymous and continue to buy work directly off ebay.

Ditto to you again Andy, of course these Gallery owners are content with buying on Ebay, because they know they're getting over like little fat rats and they can do whatever they want to do with the work they've purchashed on Ebay. That's why I'm sooooo hesitant to put my work on Ebay. I'll bet you any amount of money that whatever price these art Gallery owners purchased these works, they in turn turned around and sold them for probably hundreds of dollars more than what they bought them for on Ebay. I'm a firm believer that's just why everyone should at least entertain the idea of selling Giclee's. At least you haven't lost your original forever for penny's on the dollar. You could always do open-ended and limited edtion prints and continue to make money. This really makes me angry. People really need to start thinking of the advantages and the disadvantages of selling their beautiful originals for little or nothing, I've seen some really awesome work here on W. C. that as far as I was concerned they just gave it away. :(

conrad00
01-25-2005, 06:57 AM
I can certainly see why it would be attractive for a gallery owner to be able just to buy good work on ebay for rock bottom prices and then resell it but on the other hand most still have the same problem that we all do - selling art for decent prices ain't too easy :D Galleries come and go out of business every year and I doubt the majority of them are in a very enviable position. They might slap another zero on the price of that painting they got on ebay but how long before they sell it, and how many overheads do they clock up in the meantime?

I think if you can sell work on ebay for a price which you're happy to accept regardless of what happens to it afterwards then there's no problem, but if you feel forced to sell for less than you're happy to take then I guess ebay is best avoided :)

hillrune
01-25-2005, 07:09 AM
The only thing better would be two or more galleries in bidding wars :D

Dee

Now that would be fun! especially if they "really" wanted your work! I've wondered when I see buyers swooping up art if they are really gallery owners who have found a way to get lots of art cheap. Think about it from their standpoint - if they are shrewd they can offer art from all over the world!

I think the art on eBay is amazing! Even the beginning painters have a lot to offer! I am one who loves naive art. (I do a lot of it myself actually - ha!).

Hey there's this guy selling in Pop Art who's making a killing! Only has a few feedbacks. The name is familiar like maybe he is a gallery star already and just beginning to sell online. It's amazing to see.

Anybody know what Pop Art is? I know the art history version of it...but now...what kind of art is it in present day art?

I want to do some!

Mary

hillrune
01-25-2005, 07:11 AM
Hi David looks like we agree on things! We must have been looking over each other's shoulders while we were typing!

I want to try a wave! I like your waves...oh darn where are they?

Mary

conrad00
01-25-2005, 07:23 AM
Hi David looks like we agree on things! We must have been looking over each other's shoulders while we were typing!

I want to try a wave! I like your waves...oh darn where are they?

Mary

:wave: :wave: Do you mean these kinds of waves or waves on the beach?? :D lol

I contemplate the pop art question too sometimes :) For example, I love Warhol and all that but when I see people doing screenprint type versions of other people's photographs now it just leaves me cold. I can't figure it out. They certainly do sell well on ebay though- I think the big advantage is that there's a ready non-art fan base to aim at. Do one of Al Pacino and the Al Pacino fans will find it even though they aren't intending to search for art. I think the only problem the ebay pop-artists have is that they are all in competition - often using the same photographs as a basis for their pics. Check out how many pop art versions of the same photo of Audrey Hepburn there are :)

theIsland
01-25-2005, 10:05 AM
Ditto to you again Andy, of course these Gallery owners are content with buying on Ebay, because they know they're getting over like little fat rats and they can do whatever they want to do with the work they've purchashed on Ebay. That's why I'm sooooo hesitant to put my work on Ebay. I'll bet you any amount of money that whatever price these art Gallery owners purchased these works, they in turn turned around and sold them for probably hundreds of dollars more than what they bought them for on Ebay.

Well, of course they do. Nothing wrong with that. I'll tell you the same thing I tell the people I sell for: Never expect retail prices on eBay. The only thing that lures buyers into giving money to complete strangers on the net for paintings they've never seen is a really great price. If these customers wanted to pay retail, they'd go to a retail store and have a much safer transaction. But no, they come to us, and trade a certain amount of risk for savings.

If I sell a painting at a wholesale price, then it only makes sense that someone might want to mark it up for a profit. That's great! How is it different from giving the gallery 40-50% to sell a painting, except on eBay, it's an outright cash-up-front sale with no further obligation?

I'm a firm believer that's just why everyone should at least entertain the idea of selling Giclee's. At least you haven't lost your original forever for penny's on the dollar. You could always do open-ended and limited edtion prints and continue to make money. This really makes me angry. People really need to start thinking of the advantages and the disadvantages of selling their beautiful originals for little or nothing, I've seen some really awesome work here on W. C. that as far as I was concerned they just gave it away.

You bring up a good point. My analogy is that it's like a musician who tries to make money by doing only live shows. Most artists do realize this, and have repros made, as soon as they can afford them.

No need to get angry about the choices other artists make. :) What's right for me might not be right for you. After thirty years of selling my art (as well as buying/selling limited edition prints by other artists for profit), I feel I'm a pretty good judge of what marketing choices suit me. EBay, despite it's problems, fits me like a glove. It appears it's not a good choice for you. That's fine. :) Buyers need the entire menu from which to choose, not just eBay.

Noma

sherina
01-25-2005, 05:22 PM
Well, of course they do. Nothing wrong with that. I'll tell you the same thing I tell the people I sell for: Never expect retail prices on eBay. The only thing that lures buyers into giving money to complete strangers on the net for paintings they've never seen is a really great price. If these customers wanted to pay retail, they'd go to a retail store and have a much safer transaction. But no, they come to us, and trade a certain amount of risk for savings.

If I sell a painting at a wholesale price, then it only makes sense that someone might want to mark it up for a profit. That's great! How is it different from giving the gallery 40-50% to sell a painting, except on eBay, it's an outright cash-up-front sale with no further obligation?



You bring up a good point. My analogy is that it's like a musician who tries to make money by doing only live shows. Most artists do realize this, and have repros made, as soon as they can afford them.

No need to get angry about the choices other artists make. :) What's right for me might not be right for you. After thirty years of selling my art (as well as buying/selling limited edition prints by other artists for profit), I feel I'm a pretty good judge of what marketing choices suit me. EBay, despite it's problems, fits me like a glove. It appears it's not a good choice for you. That's fine. :) Buyers need the entire menu from which to choose, not just eBay.

Noma
Hello Norma I agree with some of the things or feelings you expressed, but the difference to me is , because you used an art gallery as an analogy is that when you sell an art piece via through a gallery yes they take % 50, but I could live with that if the piece sold for thousands of dollars. Not like selling on Ebay where people are starting off bids at .99 cents or $99.00 and some art gallery comes along and buy's the piece at that price, then turns around and makes hundreds of dollars. That's just not right to me. But like you said to each is own. I wasn't trying to dictate what anyone should do, as I myself am contemplating using Ebay one day. I wish everyone who uses Ebay success and lot's of sales.

hillrune
01-25-2005, 08:26 PM
:wave: :wave: Do you mean these kinds of waves or waves on the beach?? :D lol

I contemplate the pop art question too sometimes :) For example, I love Warhol and all that but when I see people doing screenprint type versions of other people's photographs now it just leaves me cold. :)

what else besides screenprinting would you call the modern day Pop Art? How can they call it that since time has passed and it's no longer the same era?

what have I missed here?

as far as subject matter...isn't that what Pop Art was all about?

Mary

Picassosattic
01-31-2005, 09:25 PM
Much of my work on Ebay has been purchased by galleries, and I think it is great. The more people who own my work the better. That's how collectors find out about you.

www.ruthrobertson.com
www.e-moca.com

Fagan
02-01-2005, 09:36 AM
Patti....I probably will not be doing business with that gallery again. *LOL* I kind of bit off my nose to spite my face......again.

They wanted to buy several of my paintings but at cheaper prices. I consented to combining shipping costs but would not lower my original prices. They were already too low! They received one of my paintings (Pearadox) and a week later contacted me about the painting. In the painting on the board the pears were sitting on....I had written numbers and words (to make the board look like it was an old used one) I had up close pictures of this on my auction. They were not happy with the penciled words and numbers. (they acted like I was trying to pull a fast one on them) .....sheesh... They were very happy with the rest of the painting. They said they would not give me feedback on this painting. I pointed out they could send the painting back for a refund. They refused. I felt it was not fair that they did not give me favorable feedback as I did everything that I was supposed to do on this auction. They were very snotty about my having work in their gallery. I decided that these people were probably not someone I wanted to deal with in the future. Whether they have a gallery or not. There are a LOT of galleries ....much closer to home. I did not have a good feeling dealing with them.

But like I said....I do tend to cut my bridges behind me. :(

PMurphy42
02-01-2005, 05:45 PM
Hi Bev....sorry to hear about that. I bet they will be back.

They just bought a couple of my mini's. I haven't had anything else listed since.