Saturday, April 04, 2009

…but I know what I like.

About a week ago, my head almost exploded when the stumble button took me to an 'artist's' website where the aforementioned 'artist' was attempting to sell what can only be described as 'phone-pad quality doodles' for ridiculous amounts of money.

My head actually exploded when I saw that someone had actually parted with seventy-five dollars for a 4" by "5" sketch card of a nude female figure that looked like the artist had created it by shoving a ballpoint up his asshole then squatting over the paper.

Just to be clear here, this wasn't a famous artist. This wasn't someone parting with seventy-five smackers to buy a napkin sketch by Picasso. This was someone parting with seventy-five smackers for a shit doodle drawn by a nobody (and I know it's a nobody, because I googled the crap out of him and found nothing except his website and an eBay auction).

This left only one course of action… I had to try to sell some artwork of my own.

There are two reasons for this. Firstly, I want to prove to myself that I haven't actually gone batshit insane. I know art is subjective, but the only way I would have paid for any of the art from that website is if I'd been caught short in a public bathroom and it was offered to me under the stall door.

Secondly, if people are willing to spend Seventy-Five Smackers
for a sketch card that looks like it's been drawn by a 'special' four year old, I gotta get me some of that sweet, sweet moolah.

So I decided to play it clever, come up with a plan… and I think I covered all the bases.

Two kinds of art sell really well on eBay. Comic art and erotic art. So I drew a Venn Diagram and put myself right in the overlap.

You see, men like pictures of butts 'n' boobs, but what they really like is pictures of boobs and butts that they don't have to feel ashamed about buying. So I wanted to draw something kinda sexy that would allow the buyer to look at his wife/girlfriend/mom and say:

"No Dear, this isn't porn this is art! It represents how women can be powerful yet remain feminine, how a woman can be totally in control in a patriarchal society."

Or completely lie and say:

"Yeah, Mom, I know it's inappropriate and I know it nearly gave Nana a heart attack but it's by this totally famous comicbook artist and it's going to be worth thousands! Don't think of it as a dirty picture, think of it as an investment for college."

Or if they don't care, say:

"Dude, check it out! You can totally see that chick's butt!"

So I pulled out my sketchbook and went for it. I decided to draw something that in internet terms would be considered very mildly 'not safe for work', with a touch of fetishism to help sell the 'arty' side of it. (It's like photography. Put a woman in a leather bustier and take a brightly lit color picture of her waving her boobs at the camera and you have porn…have her reclining on a chaise longue and make the photo slightly too dark, black and white and taken from a weird angle and you have 'art').

A couple hours later I'd come up with this. (I've linked to the pic just in case you are reading this at work and your boss frowns on employees looking at drawing that includes a female butt in a thong…you see worse on cable TV in the middle of the afternoon, but I don't wanna get anyone fired.)

Anyway, once the ink had dried I slapped the drawing in a frame, took a photo and put it on eBay.

That was a week ago. The auction ends the day after tomorrow and while there are no bids yet, there are currently five people watching the auction…so I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a last minute bidding war (No one bids until there's less than an hour left anyway).

The only thing I'm starting to regret is setting the starting price so low (comparatively speaking). After checking out the competition on eBay, it appears that quality doesn't have much to do with whether a piece sells or not. The critical price appears to be somewhere between fifty and a hundred dollars… less and people assume it's not 'good art' because it's cheap, and more than a hundred appears to be overpriced if you're not already a famous artist.

The auction ends on Monday…I'll let you know how it goes.


Evan 08 said...

That's a cool way to make some money. Next, you need to sell "limited prints." This way you can sell the same picture over and over... say 100 or 1000 times. That could also make you seem a little more established.

marie said...

I like her boots.