Studying Art Sales

I’ve been studying the sales on DPW for a bit now, just so I can understand the flow & maybe work with it better. I’ve noticed a few things that have changed from the past few years, and it’s mostly because of the increase of artists & artwork on the site.

A) it looks like the art that is marked to re-show on the front page carry their past view counts with them. So the total average of the day actually is for multiple days, depending on how many pieces are re-showing (1 piece can reshow on the front page once every 6 months, and up to 3 different times.)

B) I think that people may be buying the cheaply priced items more towards the end of the month - and it may tie in with the Artist Spotlight giveaway. Buying a piece of art on DPW auto-enters you into the drawing for the monthly giveaway, and every purchase I believe increases your entry. So people can spend just $1 or $10 to get a chance for a 2nd “free” piece, maybe of an artist they like but can’t afford. Maybe keep this in mind as you post/price your work.

C) The “What’s being sold” shows a gallery of paintings recently sold, but they weren’t all sold through DPW. As artists upload their work to create their DPW galleries/websites, the “sold” items will increase. So “What’s being sold” can not be viewed as DPW sold work only.

None of this is mean’t to bash DPW, I like it here and have been here a long time. Yes, I’ve seen my sales drop off, especially this past year. But like another artist said in a different post, that’s my problem. But I think it’s important that artists view the statistics with a fresh eye - avoid discouragement that your art isn’t getting the same views, sales or prices, as the average, etc, etc. Really, you should only be comparing your work to your work, and your stats to your stats.


I have expierenced a drastic drop in auction sales for me after the first of year this year. I am puzzled that out of 1700+ auctions only less than 20 active bids and for a while it was staying around 10.
I have recommended DPW to a lot of artists, but now I am considering leaving.

I am going month by month with it now. I sold this month, so my monthly cost is covered. But I totally understand. Each month I wait to see if I will cover the monthly charge, which is quite different than say 2 years ago, when I was making a profit every month! I’ve read/heard this in other circles as well, so online may only be working for established artists now, and the daily paint craze has ended. I don’t know - wish I had the answer because it is discouraging.


This is certainly not to bash this site, it is one of the better places for artists online. However I think the online market is dead, except for the top flight known name artists, and that’s through their own website mostly. Many years ago I was selling through various sites online and doing well. This has come to a complete stop. I do very well in the old style selling through in person galleries though. I think the amazement, for lack of a better word, of buying online is gone. To many photos look better than the product. Not on purpose, but things online are lit up, and no degree of photographic expertise can get past that. I’ve taken many paintings to buyers and they thought the pic looked better online, and I paid professionals to take the pic. Mainly the online market is just oversaturated. When you walk into a gallery you actually see a painting and that might trigger a buy, but when you search online for a type of painting…well…your going to be able to get millions of photos. It certainly doesn’t mean somebodies art is not worthy. Just probably not seen or jumbled into the hundreds of others you’ve already seen as a buyer. I think at this point art sites need to be geared more to artists interacting with other artists and if sales come…great.


One other thing to add regarding photos online. Every computer screen, monitor, phone, iPad, etc., may show the image differently - as far as color balance, saturation, intensity. Their color tables, for lack of an easier word, vary based on manufacturer, age, size, etc. I’ve had people tell me the color is too “red” when in fact it isn’t, if anything, it’s more blue. And it pertains mainly, to what is used to view the image. Much the same as different 35mm cameras & films captured image colors differently (I remember Sony film being more to the blue side, while Fuji had less blue).

Every post here is valid. There aren’t a lot of sales here anymore. I reluctantly had to leave after years of being on this site and profiting from it. Its not the site’s fault…art sales all over the web are drastically down. I’m only on eBay now…where I’ve been selling since 1998 and art sales there are dead even though prices are drastically low. I don’t know what the answer is. For now, I’ve put away my paints and just trying to enjoy retirement…but I’m very sad over it. Painting kept me interested in my life.

Thanks Nan for your insights! I had noticed that in general views had dropped in the last year… I’ve only sold a few pieces since I have been here, but that has a lot to do with my skill level. Using mainly now as my website, so I have someplace to refer people to. Can you explain what the “re-showing” is all about? Not familiar with that. Thanks!

My views are definitely down. Compared to about 2 or so years ago, a certain amount of views would be a “good” day. Now I consider half that many views to be a “good” day. So things are down.

I still sell, though I’m producing more paintings. I consider 2015 to be a very good year (as far as views go, and as well as being more likely to sell a painting the day I first put it up). However, I’ve already made more in 2018 (Jan-July) than I made in all of 2015 (Jan-Dec). That’s because I didn’t put up as many paintings on average back then. I wonder how much more I would have sold in 2015 had I done more paintings!

It is definitely slower, nobody is imagining that. But sales are still happening. I have sold decently this month (better than last month), and what happened was after I took a break from putting up paintings, I got some sales. It’s totally random.

My takeaway from this is to just keep painting, take your time (don’t rush—I am guilty of that!), put them up on the site and they will sell when they sell. Have a blog and put your art up on Pinterest. I can’t prove that Pinterest helps, but I do see my paintings in a lot of collections on Pinterest.


I like your statement that painting kept you interested in your life.
So…because sales of art ebb and flow with the moods and movements of the economy (or something), what if we paint anyway… simply because it is good for living well?
My thought for you and us all is to keep creating not because someone will notice or buy the work, but create because it is life-giving. Sooner or later, not unlike Vincent Van Gogh, the work may find its audience. But don’t let a lack of audience keep you from something life-giving.
Keep painting and you’ll cultivate your craft, refine your eye, become aware in the moment, and stay alert to life.


Thanks for contextualizing sales in 2015 and 2018, and for sharing that you are getting some sales. Good news.

Steve thanks so much for your post. Truth is my home is bulging at the seams with my artwork. I’m up in age now (77) and at this point I’ve been trying to “lighten the load” so as not to burden my son with everything. I love to paint but have put my paints away until, hopefully, things pick up again. Like some of the others I did really well on DPW the first couple of years but after that sales just came to a standstill. I not only had to leave here but also closed a website I’ve had up and running since 1996. Such is life.

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Patricia, I’m a fan of your work but procrastinated in buying any. I host my own website (have a hosting plan that offers ample space) and if you would like, I could host your website at no cost. I have done this for other people. It costs me nothing extra and there is room to spare. Please let me know if you’re interested. I hate the thought of a site up since 1996 being taken down.

Edit: Found you on eBay and finally got something! I LOVE it.

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Thanks, Steve.

I wish I knew the “magic bullet” that would trigger sales. We’d all like to sell more. I have looked at the galleries of everyone who posted here and NOBODY here is lacking in skill. The skill level is good, so it’s not that.

I paint a lot these days (though I’ve slacked off the last two weeks or so) and can’t help but think that if this were 2015, I’d be selling a lot more. But I still sell and am very grateful for that.

The first few years I was on DPW I would put up something new every few months. I sold maybe once or twice a year. I just kept paying my monthly fee out of inertia. Then I started taking lessons from a local artist. (I’m not without prior education, but this new teacher was so amazing and I felt I was at an impasse and so jumped at the chance to study under him.) I immediately saw an improvement in the quality of my work and it was very exciting. But I had forgotten about DailyPaintworks. I was painting all these studies for the teacher but never once thought I’d put them up for sale.

Then an old painting on DPW sold out of the blue and I thought, “Well, I have all these new studies sitting around, why don’t I list them?” So I did. It sold by morning. (I thought it was a software glitch on DPW’s side when I saw the red dot!) I put something else up the next day or shortly after. It also sold by morning. And it went that way for most of that month! Pretty amazing! Then I ran out of new paintings! LOL. I’ve had good months, but never as good as that one!

There’s not much of a moral to that story, except maybe try to put up new paintings as often as you can, but don’t rush them (which I am sometimes guilty of).


I’ve been on DPW since the end of 2017. I thought I’d give it a try for a few months, but didn’t really believe I would sell anything. I sold a piece within a week. O wow, it really works :slight_smile: So I stayed. Only 1 other painting sold here since then. It’s ok though, I’m staying. I think eventually it will pick up. This year I had my first solo show, I show in juried shows, and was in an artist market. Pieces sold in all these places. I also post on facebook and have a blog. So I think you can’t really count on one venue to do it all, but have a variety. I do post some of the paintings that sold in other places, just to show them. In the meantime: keep painting!

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Thanks so much for the sale…I’m pleased to hear you like and enjoy my work. I’ve been drawing and painting all my life since childhood. Its never brought me much in the way of money but always I’ve been able to sell enough to keep on painting. I don’t know what this dip in sales means. I feel the whole country is just not right with themselves right now and things like art are being pushed aside.

Thank you so much for the offer to host some of my work. I sure will give that some thought. I am up on ArtPal now…no sales yet but I don’t have to pay unless I want front page exposure for one particular work of my choice. Those interested might want to check it out.

J_Dunster, Thanks again for the purchase and for your kindness :slight_smile:


But where to store them all? I have them stashed in under-bed bags, in hall cupboards, at the back of the sofa,and in the studio…which is also my bedroom. And frankly I get tired of seeing them. That initial pleasure of yet another new painting has waned. In six months, I have sold nothing.

Wow. It’s inspiring to hear how quickly they sold that particular month.
If you’ve done the gallery scene at all, you’ll know that summer is not a good selling month, unless maybe if the gallery is in a tourist destination town. All my summer shows are poorly attended, while my fall/winter shows are packed with guests. And sales go up before holidays. So maybe this is a seasonal slump. Maybe. :slight_smile: Thanks.

Yes, too many paintings and they feel like clutter rather than the treasures they truly are.
So one thing I do is a fall/winter home-studio invitational (only) show. The small artworks make for good gifts right before holiday buying - something original and personal rather than another store-bought gift. I do a spring and a fall show. These are also a way to connect with people in person. I sold half (12 of 25) my watercolors in a home-studio show this spring. If I work smaller and price lower, I expect I’ll sell still more in oils. Online can’t be our only sales venue if it’s in a slump. I guess. Just thoughts/ideas.

And seasons of rest (from painting) can be healthy too - maybe do something different but intentional with that creative time. No point in being driven.

This particular month was in the Spring, which has always been good for me (online only). I don’t do much in the way of brick and mortar gallery sales. I tried being part of a gallery co-op, and was having to take paintings off the walls when they sold on DPW. I sell online, but not so much local. Though to be honest I haven’t tried a lot of local galleries (after that co-op).

Winter is always good for sales, no matter what! It sounds like you sell better in brick and mortar galleries than I would!