An artist’s value

I received the following reply on my crosspost to about hiring designers on

Congratulations on successfully underpaying skilled craftsmen for their work! Yay for contributing to driving down prices in a struggling marketplace!

Eeps! He's right!

I sympathize. I am starting this business because my last business selling photograph could never get someone to pay me for art. Plus the startup costs were so expensive.

I’m not sure how to balance the two: cheapening craftspeople vs low startup costs. My goal is to hire underappreciated craftspeople — at a premium, BTW. But if the startup costs are too high it will never happen.

When turning to venture capitalists your business becomes beholden to them requiring you to turn a profit and as much of a profit as possible. I could not give the profits to my employees if I were required to, effectively, give that money to some rich guy.

This doesn’t really assuage my guilt. But the market allowed me such easy access to it that I fell for the temptation. The issue may be too big of a battle to successfully fight. There will probably always be someone in the whole world willing to offer a service at extreme low cost.

What do you think should be done about the problem?