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Art Licensing by artist Joan Beiriger: I'm happy to share art licensing info but please
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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Exclusive Art Licensing Agreements - Should You or Shouldn't You Sign Them?

An exclusive licensing agreement is when an artist agrees to license her/his art with only one manufacturer in a particular industry. Many fabric manufacturers and some greeting card manufacturers ask for exclusive arrangements when they plan to license an extensive amount of the artist's art. Of course there are other manufacturers that ask for exclusivity and the more well known an artist is the more exclusive licensing deals are offered. The pros in doing an exclusive is that the artist has a licensing deal already in place with the possibility to license a lot of art. Because collections of art are offered by one manufacturer in that industry, the artist gets more visibility and a chance to build equity in their brand. The con is that the licensee may not choose everything the artist creates and the artist loses opportunities to license the rejected art in that particular industry.

Should an artist sign an exclusive agreement or not? The answer is that it depends. There are many view points on why and why not to do exclusive licensing agreements so I suggest that you do your research and ask as many artists/agents as you can in order to make the right decision for yourself. A good place to start is to read an excellent article by artist Tara Reed "To sign an exclusive license - that is the question" posted on her blog (

1 comment:

  1. One thing to consider when offered an exclusive deal, is how many pieces they guarantee that they will take. I just had a flag company offer me an exclusive, but they only guaranteed that they would take six pieces, so even though it was flattering, it wouldn't be practical to limit myself that much. Also, its important to find out how much promotion they would do of your work, because if they can help build you as a name brand, it could be a good thing.