Limited edition

Discussion in 'Presentation & Marketing' started by sarahfoto, Mar 9, 2012.

  1. sarahfoto

    sarahfoto Member

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    I'm selling prints through a gallery, I made one edition 1/12 and they seemed to think it was a very small edition. I realise that there is not one right answer but how many prints would you limit yourself to?
    Is it usual to sell out a full edition? (as you notice I haven't sold that many yet...)

    // Sarah
     
  2. David Allen

    David Allen Member

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    My editions are limited to 15 but I only make each print in the edition as and when one has sold - therefore each print is slightly different.

    My best seller has sold 10 copies and the last 5 are now more expensive.

    Best,

    David.
    www.dsallen.de
     
  3. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    Against my preference I now limit my prints, some to eight, but most to 32 per image - Limiting an edition has become a gallery prerequisite

    As a former print-maker it seems odd to me to limit an edition when the lines holding the ink are not there to be squashed by each pass through the press

    John
     
  4. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    few things are mre optimistic than photographic edition limits.the most and las-sold prints are usually 1 of xxx.that says it all!
     
  5. markbarendt

    markbarendt Subscriber

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    I've thought about doing limits and decided not to make that promise.
     
  6. John Austin

    John Austin Member

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    I have had a few editions sell out, but a lot that have not

    Generally images start to sell about ten years after an image is made, rarely when it is new and excites me, so often I need to refocus my mind to the image to make a good print, as I would rater be making prints of new work, but $ales are $ales

    Later neg/print interpretations are normally better, also some mental magic springs the printing of an image back into my mind - But don't ask me to remember other things, like my wife telling me not to buy a pie when I go into town on my own, funny, that

    John
     
  7. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

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    I think limited editions have different connotations to different people. Some will have a numbered edition of a particular size print along with X# artist's proofs. There could then be other limited editions at other sizes or printed on a different medium. Some collectors like the lower numbers and frequently the price goes up as the series sells. It can be confusing and I guess there is no rule. Each photographer sets his own. Perhaps if you work exclusively through one gallery they know their market and that would be the way to go.

    Personally, if you are hand (wet) printing each on as David mentioned each is a one of a kind especially if they might be an alternative process such as pt/pd. Then there is the issue of dry mounting or not and signing the mount or print and front or retro. I believe AA printed the same negative differently at different times.

    Numbered photographic prints printed digitally may be a different story. I guess any thing goes as long as the check clears. Once purchased it is then the buyer's property.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/
     
  8. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi sarah

    for a long while i used to make single editions.
    i called them "hybrid prints" back in the 80s and 90s
    because they cobbled together a variety of different media
    into a photographic print ( plastics, inks, collodion, gelatin, found, hand made, camera made negatives )
    when i got a print that worked, i disassembled everything and even if i tried to "rebuild it" i couldn't,
    and i liked the whole idea of singularity, especially with photography .. an artform based on making copies ...

    they sold pretty well and were a lot of fun to make :smile:

    to answer your question ... make whatever size edition you want ... 5, 12, 100 ... there isn't a " right size "
     
  9. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

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    I have sold multiple prints in the past and hope to do so again and I have rarely seen so much said in so few words.

    s-a
     
  10. ROL

    ROL Member

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  11. sarahfoto

    sarahfoto Member

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    Thank you for your opinions everyone!
    I have decided to limit them to 12 because if feels like a good number in my gut. Thanks for the link ROL, it was interesting reading, I'll try to keep the dying as a final resort if nothing else works. :wink:
    //Sarah
     
  12. John cox

    John cox Member

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    12 sounds like a good number to start with. I've been doing editions of 4 for the longest time and they sell out fairly quickly now (I had one edition sell out in less than a month). If I could start over though I would do things differently, I'd really like to do more with some of the stuff only a few people will ever see.
     
  13. jordanstarr

    jordanstarr Member

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    ...must be nice to sell enough to be concerned with capping your editions.
     
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  15. WarEaglemtn

    WarEaglemtn Member

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    When you do these as limited editions - do 1-3 AP(Artist Proof) prints for you to keep.

    Be up front about the Artist Proof number. Also up front if you are doing an edition in one size and will be doing an edition in another size.

    Or, you could be like a Kinkade and have a 'limited edition' of over 34,000 prints.
     
  16. jordanstarr

    jordanstarr Member

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    I plan to never edition and die earlier than expected as to avoid editioning and selling my photographs at a premium.
     
  17. Reinhold

    Reinhold Subscriber

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  18. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    Even better, fake your death, then show up as your long-lost twin.:happy:
     
  19. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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    Limited editions are good for business people who happen to be dealing in photography. Open editions are great for photographers with faith in the quality of their photographs.
     
  20. AndreasT

    AndreasT Member

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    I would never ever make a limited edition. Perhaps I would make three prints at a time. Plus minus 1 or 2!
    A year or two or ten I would make new prints from the same negative. On different paper possible, because the old one is gone or I want to.
    Or I want to try a new developer or tone differently.
    I will be a bit wiser or dumber in the future and will change so I will print diffenrtly. I never take notes of my darkroom work so that it will not take me down the wrong route in the future.
    As an artist professional or amateur one should follow ones believes and state of mind. Not what Galleries or business men expact from one.
    Then again this makes life easy for me because I hate taking notes and am lazy.
     
  21. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Peter Lik sells his prints as 1/500 haha!

    I agree it's hard to make editions with printed media now, and I for one don't have those storage capacities available to make a full run like that.


    ~Stone

    Mamiya: 7 II, RZ67 Pro II / Canon: 1V, AE-1, 5DmkII / Kodak: No 1 Pocket Autographic, No 1A Pocket Autographic | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  22. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi jim

    i don't understand this at all.

    what if a photographer didn't want to be pinned down
    and have to print the same old boring negative 500 or 200 or 100 or 20 times ?
    when i was making single edition prints, it was because the idea of a singular image
    really differentiates a photograph as a hand made object, unlike something that can be
    obtained by pressing a button &c. i still believe this today ( 20+ years later ) ...
    it always makes me laugh when i hear of someone with an edition of 500 images.

    what's the point, to flood the marketplace with "loved images" ?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 6, 2013
  23. lxdude

    lxdude Member

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    You don't have to make a full run, though. You just have to cap the quantity. That is, you produce as needed, and when you sell the maximum in the edition, you don't sell any more.
     
  24. SuzanneR

    SuzanneR Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I've stuck with open editions, and think if you are going to do a limited edition, 12 sounds pretty good. Remember, they are your images, you can decide how many to make. Despite deciding to do open editions, I have a gallery that represents my work, but I really haven't sold very many prints. I think my work is a little too personal to be a good sell, and I'm not convinced that I'd suddenly sell a bunch if I did limited editions. With that said, I keep a data base of my work, and have a record of how many prints exist in the world and where they are, and I number the prints so if someone buys one, they know they have print number 3.

    I've never liked the idea of limiting editions because it has nothing to do with the medium, which has the ability to be reproduced, and everything to do with marketing and benefits the collector in the secondary market only. The photographer has the headache of keeping track of the edition without any real benefit.

    But to jnanian's point, I have generally won't plan to make more then 10 or 12 prints, but if I want a 13th, I'd like that option. A limited edition of 500 is laughable, and even an edition of 25 seems like an open edition! That's a lot of prints!!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 6, 2013
  25. cliveh

    cliveh Subscriber

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    Limited editions are a pretentious and superficial old marketing ploy that never really worked. Let the market decide how many you sell. If you only sell one it is more valuable as a single work of art than if you sell a thousand.
     
  26. StoneNYC

    StoneNYC Subscriber

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    Well the ones I saw the 20/500 were selling for $20,000 each and would increase by increments of like $5,000 each time one sold... It was certainly not fair when I can't sell my favorite image for $375.... Lol


    ~Stone

    Mamiya: 7 II, RZ67 Pro II / Canon: 1V, AE-1, 5DmkII / Kodak: No 1 Pocket Autographic, No 1A Pocket Autographic | Sent w/ iPhone using Tapatalk