Demystifying how to charge

+ negotiate with companies

A pricing course for surface designers to help you navigate the confusing waters of pricing, contracts, and negotiation

Join the waitlist to get notified when enrollment opens again on august 16

It’s time we all get paid like it.

Our art brings in thousands of dollars for companies.

I created this course to raise the bar in this industry. 

Too many talented surface designers end up settling for low fees because they aren’t aware of just how valuable their work is for companies. 

As a surface designer, your art is why people buy a product from one brand and not another. Your art makes a company’s products successful — and you deserve to be paid well for that. 

Artful Pricing teaches you how to charge fairly for your work, understand and negotiate profitable contracts, and feel secure in your rates and worthiness.

So you don’t panic when a company asks for (or questions!) your rates, ever again.

Without second-guessing yourself or doubting the value of your work

Artful Pricing teaches you my tried-and-tested method for pricing your art 

(with real-life examples)

“As a new designer, I didn’t want to under or overvalue my work. I didn't have any idea of how designers set their rates or how to calculate a rate based on what kind of deal is being negotiated. Now I know the value of my work plus I have a path to getting my work out there and to the people who need to see it.”

Until this course, no one seemed willing to speak honestly about compensation…

- Anjana Simpson

"It was so insightful to get a peek behind the curtain and see some of the mystery surrounding prices revealed. She gives information on what to look for and how to best create a pricing guide. I now feel much more confident about how to approach pricing than I did before I took the course."

I love that Shannon shares real numbers and examples.

- Petra Van Der Lem

“Pricing is not often shared and I don’t think people realize the different categories there are or how to charge for each type. I think artists would feel a lot less hesitant when giving a price after taking this course.”

I feel so much more confident in what to ask & how to negotiate!

- Tracy Beagen

“This course isn't just useful for the surface design industry. I think a lot of artists don't know how to talk about money, negotiate or feel confident in the business side of life in general… Once I finished this class I definitely had a boost in confidence about how to put myself in charge of the business aspect of my design business.”

Once I finished this class I definitely had a boost in confidence.

- Amanda Todaro

Step-by-step practical video lessons to walk you through the different elements of pricing & contracts, to arm you with knowledge for the real world.

Flexible pricing system to ensure you have a rock-solid rate sheet that’s adaptable for different situations.

Price ranges + quote calculators for different types of deals, so you know for sure your rates are fair. 

Screenshots of my real-life email interactions with companies so you know what to expect and are never caught off-guard.

Invoice & fee collection training to break down the practicalities of earning money from your art.

Inclusion in the Artful Pricing online community to ask specific pricing questions and seek support for tricky situations.

what to expect

Dismantle money mindset roadblocks to price objectively

Learn how to charge for different licensing & freelance deals

Feel confident negotiating contract terms & rates

Understand your current relationship with money, how it has a big impact on your income, and 3 exercises you can use to improve your mindset.

5 common pricing fears that you might be holding onto and how to dismantle them. 

Time versus money – Which is more important to you? Plus, multiple tips on how to value your abilities as an artist and improve your confidence.

Module 1: Pricing Foundation

The CliffsNotes version of the course modules

From improving your relationship with money to planning for long-term growth

What we cover:

In-depth discussion of buyouts and licenses so you understand all the options you have.

Price ranges for buyouts & flat-fee licensing, including ACTUAL examples from my portfolio and exactly what I got paid for each of them.

The 3 numbers you need from a client to know if the royalty they’re giving you is actually a good deal.

How to create a flexible price guide that’s adaptable to any pricing situation you’ll encounter.

Module 2: Licensing & Buyouts

What we cover:

What exactly IS freelance in surface design and the pros and cons of taking on work-for-hire projects.

A step-by-step method to calculate a quote that’s adjustable to any situation with things like rounds of revisions, file requirements, rush jobs, social media marketing, and more.

Important freelance project considerations that will make freelance work less stressful for you long-term.

Module 3: Freelance Projects

What we cover:

The basics of a contract including explanations of common terms to simplify the confusing jargon.

Contract red flags to watch out for and what to ask for when you find one in a contract.

5 ways (beyond price) to sweeten any deal and make it more beneficial for you, plus my step-by-step process for negotiating.

How to invoice clients once a deal is made, options for how to get paid, and what to do when a client doesn’t pay on time.

Module 4: Contracts & Negotiation

What we cover:

Common client scenarios you’ll encounter and how to address them, including four types of work you should avoid.

Why multiple streams of income can be beneficial and how to add them to your business without overextending yourself.

Important questions to ask yourself at the end of the year to help you grow your business.

The 3 most important attributes of a successful designer and how you can cultivate them in yourself.

Module 5: Long Term Growth

What we cover:

have cultivated the confidence to charge profitably with Artful Pricing:

Students from all over the world

“Artful Pricing let me in on 'the great big secret of surface pattern pricing' and enabled me to create a price guide for licensing & buyouts, plus gave me the confidence to negotiate with art directors.”

A surface designer from Ireland who used the price guide she created and negotiation advice inside Artful Pricing to license 6 designs to a wall art company!

Tina Devins

“This is a great course that empowers you with real-life scenarios and clearly breaks down some of the industry jargon. Your guidance has opened up a new pathway for my business and hopefully, I can now make it sustainable financially into the future.

And I tested what I learned on a client at the beginning of the course and was able to get them to almost triple their budget.”

An Australian illustrator who got a client to nearly TRIPLE their budget using what she learned!

Alicia Rogerson

“This course gave me knowledge about how to price things, what kind of licensing deals there are and how to negotiate, read contracts, all of it. I'm light years ahead of where I would be otherwise with this. What a resource!

I even used the price formula to price a graphic design job and it worked great!”

An artist & designer from California who used the freelance module to negotiate graphic design projects!

Melissa Escobar

The buzz about Artful Pricing...

This course goes beyond pricing guidelines to instilling confidence and increasing the earning potential of the next generation of surface designers:

The Q&As, calculators, and additional sections that break down contracts and other areas make it totally worth it. Plus the peace of mind of knowing my prices are in line with industry standards is worth everything to me.

"This was the best investment I could have made for myself!"

- Louise Pretzel

As someone who is getting into the freelance side of this industry much later in life than many, I have gained the most benefit from all of your well-thought-out, informative classes that actually give real answers and roadmaps to getting things accomplished.

"you share so much of your expertise and knowledge. "

- Diane Labombarbe

After taking the course last year, I am so grateful to have signed four contracts, my first ever as a surface designer… I really feel that your course has given me everything I need to prepare for these moments and to enter negotiations from a place of confidence.

"your Artful Pricing course has changed my career."

- Kate Lower

The whole course has been so insightful with the ins and outs of contracts and pricing, it’s really open and honest advice. It gives you the tools to enable you to price your work, with real figures and situations from licensing to freelancing and highlighting fair pricing for your work.

"I've got the starting point I was looking for."

- Laura Dobson

My biggest a-ha moment was that I have a tendency to under-value myself. The course helped give me the confidence to start with the higher numbers when negotiating, and not feel bad for asking for what I am worth! Even if an artist is going to go through an agent, the material in this course is still very helpful.

"It was very helpful to see real and realistic number ranges."

- Heather Rosas

You have a portfolio of work and are engaging in conversations with companies to freelance or license your work OR you have completed Pitch Your Portfolio

You’re at a loss about what to charge — and feel like you’re just “guessing” about what your work is worth

You lack confidence to ask for a higher rate or different contract terms than initially offered 

Reading a contract makes your eyes glaze over, so you aren’t sure what you’re signing or what terms to ask for

You wish you had someone to ask about tricky, specific pricing questions (or to run to for support when dealing with a client)

Is Artful Pricing for you?


a left-handed, left-brained surface designer & educator

Have we met yet? I’m Shannon Mcnab

Over the past decade, I slowly transitioned to my dream job as a full-time surface designer working for myself. Before that, I had a career as a graphic designer in email marketing (which was as boring as it sounds). 

When I say “slowly transitioned”, I mean it! It was definitely not an overnight success. 

One thing that did help? Though I’m an artist, the other part of me is a total numbers nerd, so I thrived on testing different approaches, documenting my results, and creating streamlined systems for myself.

Ultimately I arrived at the methods that led me to collaborations with brands like Papyrus, Cloud9 Fabrics, Pyrex, and Trader Joe’s — and seeing my designs on products in stores I shop at! Now, I teach these methods to other surface designers who would prefer to just borrow my analytical brain instead of figuring it out on their own (like I had to). 

When does enrollment open next?


August 2022! Join the waitlist to be first in line!

Is there a time limit for course access? (Can I take my time or is there a set schedule?)

The course itself is completely self-paced, so you can go through it as quickly or slowly as you like depending on how you like to learn.  There are 4-week and 8-week pacing calendars to follow if you want accountability to complete the course.

But if you can’t work through it all in 4-8 weeks, that’s okay. You will have lifetime access to the course content to complete when you can.

How much time do I need to complete this course? 

My suggestion is one module per week (the modules range from 30-60 minutes to watch). 

And I’ve provided a 4-week and 8-week pacing calendar inside the course to give you suggested timelines for working through the content – including a few weeks of implementation so you can immediately put what you learn to use.

Still, I don’t want you to get too overwhelmed, so I encourage you to go at whatever pace you’re most comfortable with given your current schedule. Remember, you’ll always have access to this course and can revisit any video.

How much does this course cost? Are there payment plans? 

The course costs €599 (approx. $625 USD) to pay in full, or you have the option to choose the 6-month payment plan at €120/month ($125/mo USD) for 6 months (total €720, approx. $750 USD).

Do you offer refunds? 

Yes, within the first two weeks of class.

Will you teach me how to find companies to pitch to in this course?

No, but I do teach this in my other course, Pitch Your Portfolio!

Will this help me if I don’t live in the US?

Absolutely! Artful Pricing has alumni from more than 20 countries, from Belgium to Greece to Israel, who have used what they learned to further their design careers.

Will this help me price freelance work or is it just for licensing?

Yes, what you learn in Artful Pricing applies to pricing freelance work as well. In fact, there is a dedicated module all about pricing freelance work.

How do I know if I’m ready for this course?

If you’re reaching out to companies, then you are ready!  But if you’re learning how to design, then it’s best to wait.

Will this course tell me exactly what to charge?

Not exactly. This industry is not one-size-fits-all, so giving you exact numbers is not going to help. Instead, Artful Pricing is built around a pricing framework that can be adapted to every unique situation.

So this course meets you where you’re at today and gives you the knowledge and motivation to advocate better rates and terms for yourself right now AND for years to come.

Do you provide captions or transcripts for course videos?

Yes! Every course video has captions and downloadable transcriptions available to make it easier for you to learn the material in whatever way works best for you.

There’s also a full course workbook you can download or print out so you can follow along through each module.

What’s the difference between Pitch Your Portfolio and Artful Pricing? (Which should I take first?)

Pitch Your Portfolio teaches you how to pitch companies, and Artful Pricing teaches you how to price your work. I recommend taking Pitch Your Portfolio first — because if you’re not pitching, there’s no one to negotiate pricing with!

What if I have more questions before I sign up? 

Happy to help. Email with additional questions. 

Let’s raise the bar for all surface designers.

Are you with me?

Charging appropriately for your work (which is probably much higher than you think!) doesn’t just benefit you — it benefits all of us. 


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