Milestone: 1,200+ art and photography sales on Pixels and Fine Art America!

I’ve been selling my fine art photography on Fine Art America and now Pixels since 2011.  I started slowly, building my portfolio from a few images to nearly 5,000 artworks.

Along the way I’ve been developing my stock photography offerings through Arcangel, licensing to publishers for book covers and magazine articles, showing in galleries such as the Whitney in Pittsfield, MA and the AVA Gallery in Lebanon, NH. and traveling – adding images from around the world including Iceland, Hawaii, Italy, Florida, Vermont, Maine, New York, Connecticut, New Hampshire etc.

My art sales did not start right away.  I think it took me about three months before I made my first sale.  At the time I was concentrating on my skills and basically learning to create better images and more compelling imagery.  Also telling stories through images inspired by the demands of the commercial photography market.

Photography Prints

I also wasn’t doing much of my own marketing, rather thinking that sales would come to me.  After a few years I realized that this doesn’t happen so much.  If you want to the world to see and care about your photography, you have to market yourself and develop your brand.  You need to push your photography out unto the world if you want anyone to see it and then perhaps purchase it.

Sell Art Online

You also have to produce images that buyers are looking for – I’ve found that buyers want image that project a feeling of place or a mood, rather than the image I call “Look I saw a squirrel”.  So many of the flow of photographs people post on Facebook or even offer to sell on Fine Art America, Pixels or other POD sites are simply snapshots.  They point and shoot.  Not much pre-thought or even any sense of passion for the scene.    The result is boring and uninteresting images.

Art Prints

Good images require good subjects, good composition and compelling lighting. I’ve seen people offering the most boring images – photographs of drainage ditches, animal butts, weeds, clouds etc.  You’re left wondering why someone would think these would sell or even why they even bothered to upload them.  The scenes were boring enough in person and then made even more boring with not post processing work, cropping or even exposure adjustments.

Art Prints

Great photographs hit you immediately.  Poor, boring photographs should also be apparent.  If not, the viewer/photographer/editor of their own portfolio, should start learning to see.  Hit the museums, hit the books, hit the galleries – learn to see great composition, great lighting and understand what is compelling and what is not.

How can you get thousands of sales on Pixels and Fine Art America?

Getting thousands of art and photography sales on Pixels and Fine Art America is as simple as:

  • creating a large portfolio of compelling artwork or photographs
  • creating images that buyers want to hang in their office or home
  • creating some buzz around your work
  • getting your work out there in the public space through marketing
  • creating unique images
  • creating well crafted images
  • creating professional level images
  • gaining followers and champions of your work who will share it with their friends
  • getting your work off the Internet and out in the public via galleries and shows

 

Art Sales – Different Strokes for Different Folks

Art Sales – Selling art is a lot like going fishing.  You never know what sale might come along but there certainly are ways to increase your success rate.  Think about two different Fishermen – Bob and Pablo.

Fisherman Bob  sits on the dock near his house all day using the same bait. He picked the location because he didn’t want to invest in a boat and it’s easy. He catches nothing but minnows but at least he got out of the house for the day.

Sell Art Online

Meanwhile, Fisherman Pablo buys a boat and heads out to the deep end of the lake where the big fish live, he tries various lures until he finds what works,  pulls in a boat load of lunkers and invites the neighborhood over for a fish fry.

Art Prints

Selling art is no different.  It takes more effort, more investment and more experimentation to figure out what will work best for your art business.

Photography Prints

You can sit around for years using the easiest or first sales channel you found waiting for sales to magically appear, perhaps using a bait-less hook or you can study the competitive landscape and various sales channels and figure out which will work best for your art and your promotional efforts.

Photography Prints

Whatever sales channel you choose (or multiple), it still requires work to get noticed.  You need the right bait – great artwork and you need to drop your line where the fish live.  You have to offer different bait or lures for Bass then you would for Trout.  You have to make your bait more attractive than the natural alternatives and often you have to make full fish hungry with offers they can’t refuse.  You also have to make it easy for the fish or art customer to eat or buy your work.  Let’s face it, if you are a fish or a person buying art we all like convenience.

Recent sales – beach house decor, diners and westies

Recent sales from www.edwardfielding.com and artist Edward M. Fielding including fine art photographs with beach themes, farm scenes, Americana images of diners, vintage patents for classic toys and photogenic westie dogs. Trending sales include gift items such as coffee mugs, phone cases, cards and even large metal prints for the beach house.

May and June are popular months for gift items for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, graduations and weddings. Summer is also the time to get the lake or beach house ready for another fun season of family, friends and fun.

Photography Prints

20″ x 20″ metal print of Keep Off The Jetty Sign to a buyer from Walkersville, MD.

Photography Prints

48.000″ x 32.000″ metal print of Lobster Landing Sunset to a buyer from Walkersville, MD.

Photography Prints

12.000″ x 7.500″ print of Al Capone Mug Shot to a buyer from Owasso, OK.

https://pixels.com/featured/the-four-aces-diner-edward-fielding.html
https://pixels.com/featured/the-four-aces-diner-edward-fielding.html

7.125″ x 10.000″ print of The Four Aces Diner to a buyer from Seatac, WA.

Slinky Vintage Patent Shower Curtain
Slinky Vintage Patent Shower Curtain

Shower Curtain of Slinky Toy Blueprint to a buyer from Portsmouth, NH.

Portrait of a Westie framed print.
The most recent sale of “Portrait of a Westie” framed in a simple black frame and mat.

13.125″ x 16.000″ print of Portrait Of A Westie Dog to a buyer from Globe, AZ.
Art Prints

Men’s T-Shirt (Regular Fit) – Heather – Large of The Old Truck And The Crab Apple to a buyer from Round Mountain, TX.

John Deere Green Tractor Vintage Style by Edward M. Fielding
John Deere Green Tractor Vintage Style by Edward M. Fielding

Coffee Mug – Small (11 oz.) of John Deere Green Tractor Vintage Style to a buyer from Kalamazoo, MI.

Stop complaining and do something about it

Complaining is easy. Executing is hard.

I think at this point I’ve heard every complaint there is for not creating great photography or not selling your work. Let’s recap.

  • I don’t have a good enough camera
  • If only I had a F1.8 blah blah blah expensive lens
  • If only I lived in a more exciting location
  • If only I had a home studio
  • If only I had that new camera
  • If only I had a full frame camera
  • If only I had that mirrorless camera
  • If only I could afford expensive vacations
  • If only I lived in the country
  • If only I lived in the city
  • If only I went to photography school
  • If only the POD featured my work
  • If only I showed up higher in the search engines
  • If only I could write better
  • If only I was better looking
  • If only my friends were models
  • If only I had a cute dog
  • If only I got started earlier
  • If only there wasn’t so many competitors

Photography Prints

Blah, blah, blah.  Come on already.  If you are not executing a plan to improve your photography and improve your photography sales in this day and age, then I’m sorry, you are just being lazy.

At no other time in history has it been so easy to learn about photography – for free and to learn how to sell your work.

At no other time in history as it been so easy to bring your photography to the market and promote your work.

At no other time in history has the market for fine art photograph or stock photography been so open to so many people.

At no other time in history has it been so easy to learn, improve, create and sell your work.

Art Prints

Seriously, with digital photography there is no need for a darkroom full of smelly chemicals or the need for special equipment or the costs of film, paper and chemicals.  At not other time in history can someone rapidly improve their skill quickly because of digital photography.

Sell Art Online

The Internet provides all the information one needs to learn and get feedback on their images.  Online classes such as CreativeLive provides professional level instruction for free or little cost.

Art Prints

Online market places from Ebay to Etsy to Pixels to Fine Art America etc provide simple access to buyers of artwork.  Stock agencies provide any image supplier from professional to amateur access to the professional image buying market.

Sell Art Online

Sure you can complain that you haven’t found overnight success and the competition is fierce but when was it not?  Artists have always had to hustle and work there way to the top one step at a time.  We’re not digging ditches here.  We are creating imagery.  Of course there will be a lot of competition.  At some point you just have to realize it ain’t going to be easy and you have to work harder and smarter than your competition.

Milestone: 1200 Art and Fine Art Photography Sales

Allow me to toot my own horn, as I can’t wait for others to do it. I sell my photography, design work and art on a variety of platforms from Rights Managed Stock via Arcangel to rental art via Turning Art as well as on Red Bubble and Society6 but by far my most successful selling platform to date has been Fine Art America and Pixels.com.

I have my largest portfolio on edward-fielding.pixels.com and this site offers the most combinations of museum quality prints in the form of framed and matted prints, canvas, metal, wood and more.  Plus decor products such as throw pillows, phone cases, bags and more.

In the past few months I’ve punched through the 1,000 sales mark and my collectors keep growing, discovering new, never sold before images from my portfolio of nearly 5,000 fine art photographs and artwork as well as repeat sales of fan favorite images.

Decorators have also discovered a few of my images for their clients and have received a professional discount for large volume buyers through Designer Prints which is a service to those in the trade who need to purchase in volume for their clients or for resale.

Here are some of my top sellers:

Art Prints

Sell Art Online

Photography Prints

Sell Art Online

Sell Art Online

If you want to sell your own artwork take a look at some of my advice on selling artwork articles:

About Fine Art America and Pixels

Selling Art – Search Engine Optimization SEO

5 Don’ts of Selling Artwork Online

Can I make a living at this?

Understanding Print On Demand – Part One

Want to sell your artwork online? Do some math first

Art Prints

I had to chuckle when a new artist on Pixels and Fine Art America was complaining about their lack of sales on the forum recently.  They couldn’t understand why they hadn’t made a sale yet despite having over 1,000+ views.

Really?  1,000 views and they expect the sales to come flooding in?  Think about how many people walk by an artwork at a gallery or even at a mall store window before something sells.

And that’s real people.  People in a retail environment.  People with a wallet in their pocket or cash in their purse.  People who are already in the mood to do a little shopping.

What is a 1,000 views on the Internet?  Most likely its bots.  Little software robots that index the internet every day.  They come to a page, scan the contents and report back to the search engine from which they came.  They are not buyers.  Bots are most likely 99% of the traffic that an internet page receives and bots are not buyers.

Then there are the lookers, tire kickers and browsers.  People looking for free clip art, people looking for free screen savers, people who are just curious, people who are simply at work – bored and playing around.  And perhaps a few are serious buyers.

So out of that 1,000 views, how many are valid potential buyers?  Perhaps three?

Sell Art Online

Now take that three and consider the competition.  Pixels and Fine Art America says they have upwards of 125,000 living artists who use their site to offer their artwork for sale.  125K artists who are uploading something like 6,000 new images on a daily basis.

So this is the kicker from this artist who can’t believe they haven’t sold anything yet.

“Granted, I only have 8-9 drawings posted” and only joined in 2016 and has zero followers.  In other words hasn’t done much at all.

Sell Art Online

POD means Print On Demand not ATM

Uploading images to a POD site and “offering” work is not the same as marketing, promoting and selling your artwork.  POD sites are not ATM machines.  They don’t spit out money without putting in some effort.

Despite what you might have heard, art does not sell itself.  It needs to be seen and it needs to be seen by a lot of people before the right buyer reaches into their pocket and parts with their hard-earned money to purchase said artwork.

Do you have any idea how many buyers there are in the world wanting to purchase your artwork?  Does it appeal to hundreds? Thousands? Millions? A few? Just one? No one?

Some of the work I offer in my portfolio of nearly 5,000 pieces of photography and artwork has never sold – perhaps yet or perhaps never.  Some have sold a few times and a few have sold nearly fifty times.  Some sold in as little as three days, others took three years to find a buyer.

Some have less than 100 views and have sold.  Other have thousands of views and haven’t sold once.

Photography Prints

What does it take to sell artwork on Pixels and Fine Art America and other Print On Demand or POD websites?

There really is not secret formula to selling artwork on POD sites.  Good work, that is in demand, lots of it plus marketing, promotion and time for people to find it is the secret.

  • Professional, top quality work
  • Unique work that sets you apart from the pack
  • Work that fits the audience of the website
  • Lots of inventory to choose from
  • Promotion
  • Social Media activity
  • Marketing
  • Good titles, keywording, descriptions
  • Time for the work to be found by search engines and potential buyers.

 

 

 

Recently sold on Pixels – April 2017

Vintage trout shop sign in West Yellowstone, Montana.
Vintage trout shop sign in West Yellowstone, Montana.

Beautifully framed with a white rustic frame and gray mat – 40.000″ x 24.125″ print of Vintage Trout Shop Sign West Yellowstone by Edward M. Fielding to a buyer from Calgary, AB – Canada.

How will you frame yours?  Framed or frameless? Matted or metal, canvas or acrylic print or a paper print framed locally?  Hundreds of option available.  http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/vintage-trout-shop-sign-west-yellowstone-edward-fielding.html

Vince Lombardi Football
Vince Lombardi Football Quote

14.000″ x 6.125″ print of Vince Lombardi Football Mug to a buyer from Victoria, TX.  Formatted for mugs yet looks just as good as framed print!  http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/vince-lombardi-football-mug-edward-fielding.html

Vintage Typewriter
Vintage Typewriter by Edward M. Fielding http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/vintage-manual-typewriter-edward-fielding.html

Recently sold  greeting card of Vintage Manual Typewriter to a buyer from Toronto, ON – Canada.

http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/vintage-manual-typewriter-edward-fielding.html
Photography Prints

Some of the more unique images in my portfolio.  Sold a 9.625″ x 10.000″ print of Instant Artist to a buyer from Eureka, CA.

http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/instant-artist-edward-fielding.html

Westie Phone Case by Edward M. Fielding
Westie Phone Case by Edward M. Fielding

Sold a IPhone 7 Case of Portrait Of A Westie Dog to a buyer from Roslindale, MA.

http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/portrait-of-a-westie-dog-edward-fielding.html

Surfboard Fence Maui Hawaii
Surfboard Fence Maui Hawaii by Edward M. Fielding http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/surfboard-fence-maui-hawaii-edward-fielding.html

Edward M. Fielding sold a 30.000″ x 20.000″ print of Surfboard Fence Maui Hawaii to a buyer from Redwood City, CA.

http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/surfboard-fence-maui-hawaii-edward-fielding.html

Old 45 Records Square Format by Edward M. Fielding
Old 45 Records Square Format by Edward M. Fielding

Sold a Throw Pillow – 20″ x 14″ of Old 45 Records Square Format to a buyer from Woonona, NSW – Australia. And a duvet cover!

http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/featured/old-45-records-square-format-edward-fielding.html

Additional sales:

Art Prints

Photography Prints

#pixelspros

Recently Sold On Fine Art America

Another look at which photographs and artwork are hot in February from the portfolio of Edward M. Fielding – http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/

Old VW Bus Hand Towel
Old VW Bus Hand Towel

Sold a Hand Towel of Vw Bus Pop Art 5 to a buyer from Ny, NY.

Art Prints

A 6.625″ x 10.000″ print of Vince Lombardi On Perfection shipping to a buyer from Strongsville, OH.

Sell Art Online

A greeting card of What Would Jimmy Buffett Do to a buyer from Tampa, FL.

Photography Prints

Recent sale of a box of greeting cards of Pug Dog Black And White to a buyer from Burlington, MA.

Art Prints

A 30.000″ x 24.125″ print of After Pollock Black And White to a buyer from Glenwood Springs, CO.

Sell Art Online

A greeting card of The Knack Of Flying to a buyer from Bellevue, WA.

Photography Prints
A greeting card of Wild Lady Slippers to a buyer from Columbia City, OR.

Photography Prints

Recent sale of a IPhone 6s Plus Case of Santa Dog Is Coming To Town to a buyer from Muncie, IN.

Photography Prints

A 24.000″ x 36.000″ print of Gates Of Brown University Providence Rhode Island to a buyer from Morton Grove, IL.

 

 

 

Monopoly Tee
Sold a Men’s T-Shirt (Regular Fit) – Black – Medium of Monopoly Original Patent Art Drawing T-shirt to a buyer from Hounslow, State/County – United Kingdom.  link

Recently sold a 36.000″ x 23.750″ metal print of Blue Ridge Mountians to a buyer from Mooresville, NC.

Sell Art Online

Can I make a living at this?

Can I make a living selling my photographs online?

In danger of sounding like the overgrown fifth grader, PeeWee Herman, my response has to be “I don’t know, can you?”

I can’t predict people’s future or have any idea of someone drive to succeed.  When someone asks “can you make a living licensing stock photographs from microstock sites” or “can you make a living selling artwork or photographs from PODs or Print On Demand sites” the answer has to be – “maybe”.

Some people do very well on stock photography sites and fine art sites like Fine Art America, Pixels, Red Bubble and Society6.  Some sell  enough to make a living at it even if its a modest one.  Then again some sellers live in third world counties where the cost of living is low.  Or they have a very spartan existence and eat ramen noodle three times a day.

The idea of living off of one’s artwork or photography buy simply uploading a few images and then kicking back on the beach is a fantasy.  Any photographer I’ve seen that has been successful has had to really hustle to make a living – they shoot weddings, they shoot events, they teach workshops, they shoot non-stop.

Alamy recently had an interview with a photographer that reached $250,000 in sales but that was after 15 years and uploading 27,000 images into his portfolio.  27,000!  Imagine finding, creating, processing and uploading that many images.  Imagine the time and effort involved.  Its not easy!  It takes dedication and working at it every single day to find worthy subjects.

From what I’ve seen, most photographers starting out in the game thinking they are going to make some money with their camera tap out the depths of their imaginations with garden flower photographs.  If garden flowers are the best you can come up with, you are going to be sorely disappointed.

Then there are the landscape photographers who dust off their cameras a few times a year when they are off on a holiday.  They stand in the National Parks next to hundreds of other vacationers getting the stale Kodak moment shot and then expecting to retire on the results.  Hate to break the news to you but very few people make a living as a landscape photographer.  Unless you have a sales force and chain of galleries in vacation spots like Peter Lik or magazine assignments from National Geographic and Outside Magazine, you probably will not be making a living as a landscape photographer.

To make any real money with your camera, you have to shoot people.  Learn to make people look good and you’ll make money with your camera doing portraits, senior portraits, weddings, fashion, etc.

Then there are the gadget hounds.  The guys with the latest and greatest cameras and lenses.  You know the guys who spend more time on the camera forums arguing about which lens is the sharpest than they spend actually taking pictures.  These guys spend all of their disposable income so they can have bragging rights the next time they are on vacation.  They are busier looking at people’s camera straps then the vistas before them. They are the ones who wander up to you while you are trying to compose a show with “I see you have the Canon X123” and try to get you to talk about camera gear.  The working photographer has no time for this, they are busy working!

If you decide to go professional with your photography, every purchase counts.  When you are in business for yourself every lens has to pay for itself.  The hobbist can buy a macro lens and play around shooting insects in the garden but the professional has to ask – what is the market for ugly bugs?  When will I make back the hundreds of dollars I just spent on this lens?

The best advice I can give is to do your research.  Here are a few books to get you started.


I’ve Sold 500+ Artworks and Photographs on Fine Art America!

Over 500 sales on Fine Art America!

Success on Fine Art America – I’ve been a member of Fine Art America and Pixels since 2011 and have 700+ followers and my work has been seen by 1,500,000+ visitors.


To date I’ve sold 500 of the 4,500+ images in my portfolio. Some have sold numerous times so the actual total number of sales is over 800. I keep track of the images that have sold in this gallery – http://edward-fielding.pixels.com/collections/recently+sold+on+faa+pixels

Now are these my best work?  I don’t know,  I have my own favorites but these are the photographs and art images that my collectors have chosen to purchase as prints, framed art, phone cases, tote bags, throw pillows, metal prints, greeting cards etc.

I might pick different images to show at a gallery or put in a book….

Make your own photobook – https://share.picaboo.com/x/4CsqWA

…but as far as selling via my online gallery with Fine Art America and Pixels, these are the images the buyers have liked enough to spend money on.

Some of the images in my recently sold gallery have only sold once so far, other sell over and over. Some of my top sellers include the following images:

Photography Prints

Photography Prints

Art Prints

Art Prints

Photography Prints

Photography Prints

Now I’ll be the first one to tell you that selling artwork in a crowded marketplace is not easy. Sellers out number buyers by thousands to one. The odds are against you that you will be able to break through the pack, get noticed and find buyers for your work.

It took me about three years of uploading quality, intriguing, unique, niche focused artwork and marketing it on a consistent basis before I started to see steady sales. A few more years of building up my portfolio and brand to the point that I could say I make a living off of my photography and art.

Most people give up before they see any benefits. They end up blaming the system for their lack of success. But the true is that they didn’t put in the time and effort required to succeed in a market with more suppliers than buyers. You have to create stunning work and get people to see it among the millions of other people who are trying to do the same. Dreams are nice but actually hard work is what is required to make dreams come true.