Selling Fine Art Photographs
Text and photography copyright © Alain Briot. All rights reserved.

About This Series of Essays

This series of essays features real-life experiences that Alain and Natalie Briot had while selling Alainís fine art photographs. Each story exemplifies a specific aspect of the buying and selling process.

The goal of these stories is to show you how fine art photographs are sold and what happens when they do. The goal is also to demonstrate some of the most important aspects of marketing and salesmanship. To this end each story focuses on a specific aspect of the selling process.

This is the second story in this series. You can read the first story at this link.

Story 2 - Nobody is Too Young to Buy Art

Honesty is the most single most important factor having a direct bearing on the final success of an individual, corporation, or product.    Ed McMahon

Prequalifying potential customers on their looks, their age or some other visual attribute is a huge mistake.

Natalie (my wife) and I were on the North porch of the El Tovar at Grand Canyon National Park, where we sold my work for 7 years, when a young girl stopped by to look at my photographs of Grand Canyon.

Moebius Arch, Eastern Sierra Nevada

We said "hi" to the girl who looked about twelve years of age. "I just love your photos" she said to me while she was looking carefully through one of our bins of matted photographs.

"Thank you, where are your parents?" we asked.

"Oh they are upstairs unpacking and they let me come down to look at the artwork" the girl said.

"What is your name, we asked?"

"Missy" she answered. We talked with Missy for a while, showed her images of sunrise and sunset taken from the El Tovar overlook in front of the hotel, and then she left.

Later that day she came back with her parents. Her father walked over to the other side of the porch where another photographer was selling his work and chatted with him for quite awhile.

The young girl stayed on our side of the porch, waiting for her father to come over. Since he wasnít coming over she eventually went to the other side herself and brought her father over to where we were.

"This is the artist I was telling you about" she told her dad. She then began to show him her favorite images of Grand Canyon, explaining to him what we had told her previously about where the photographs were taken from.

Her father smiled at us and said "Hi, nice to meet you. My daughter really wanted me to come down and see your work. At first I thought you were on the other side of the porch. Thatís why I was talking to the other artist. I am glad my daughter came to get me because I want to buy several photographs from you, not from the other artist!" He then showed us which ones photographs wanted. When his selection was complete he had selected five 16" x 20" framed photographs. As he was paying us he said, "the reason why I am buying from you is because you were so nice to my daughter and because she really likes your work."

This was a very nice sale, one we could have lost if we had dismissed Missy on the basis of her age. You never want to qualify a customer from visual clues alone. Talking to people and asking questions is the only reliable way of qualifying a customer. Just because they are children does not mean that they are not customers.<>/P>

About Alain Briotís Advanced Marketing Mastery Workshop on DVD

I just released a new photography marketing tutorial: the Advanced Marketing Mastery Workshop on DVD This tutorial teaches you how to sell your work in the [post]-recession environment. It is designed complement my book Marketing Fine Art Photography. While my book is a good introduction to the subject of marketing your photography, the new Mastery Workshop on DVD goes way beyond the book by giving you knowledge and information that I have not made available previously. The goal is to show you exactly what you need to do to sell your work profitably today. It also tells you what not to do so that you don't make the mistakes everyone else is making.

It includes a study of limited editions and a detailed Ďmanualí to handling stalls and objections. After reading this Ďmanualí youíll no longer have customers Ďget one on you!í You will know what to say, no matter what they come up with. And if there is a stall or objection I forgot to include (unlikely but possible) let me know and Iíll add it to the free DVD Owner Updates Area together with the answers appropriate for this specific stall or objection. In short, you will learn how to make sales to people that before you would have let walk away! Think about how many sales you lost that are now going to be yours.

It also includes much more but I donít have the space to explain everything here so go to the Advanced Mastery DVD description page to read the rest of the story.

Alain Briot - NPN 2054

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Alain Briot creates fine art photographs, teaches workshops and offers DVD tutorials on composition, conversion, optimization, printing and marketing photographs. Alain is also the author of Mastering Landscape Photography. Mastering Photographic Composition, Creativity and Personal Style and Marketing Fine Art Photography. All 3 books are available from Amazon and other bookstores as well from Alainís website.

You can find more information about Alain's work, writings and tutorials as well as subscribe to Alainís Free Monthly Newsletter on his website at To subscribe simply go to and click on the Subscribe link at the top of the page. You will have access to over 40 free essays by Alain, in PDF format, immediately after subscribing.

Alain welcomes your comments on this essay as well as on his other essays. You can reach Alain directly by emailing him at