Following on from her previous article, Jelly’s Head of Illustration Nicki Field offers budget negotiation tips and thoughts on pricing for illustrators in 2019…
As agents, our pricing skills are honed via our experience – across our knowledge and our rolodex brains of prior jobs of similar scope, size or production scale, complexity, usage and artists. Learning from when we got it right – and sometimes when we got it wrong. Once you’ve been doing this long enough you learn to trust your gut instinct but we still all get together every once in a while when that occasional brain scratcher comes in. And in that brainstorm there’s always one of us that someone feels is too high – or too low – or we each work it out separately and get a ‘snap’. It’s a learnt art but there’s no formula or one size fits all rule apart from making sure you’re covering the art production and a license for how your work will be used. That’s what makes it hard – every single job is different.
Having such an insight into a high turnover of jobs across the whole industry; from global campaigns, branding jobs through to publishing and editorial, give an agent a unique position to do this.
So if you’re reading this, whilst we can’t necessarily give you a number for whatever price dilemna you’re in right now – if you’re in need of some short term tangible budget negotiation tips or some thoughts on pricing below are some things I’ve learnt. Possibly wise or not:
How do you know if the price is right? You don’t. Often the price is only ever as ‘right’ as what is finally agreed. You have to trust your gut on how you feel about that figure for your time and work.