So I need some money to up some music hardware for a band I'm starting with a friend over the summer. I was thinking selling custom-painted gameboys on Etsy might be a good way to make a few bucks since it'd be fun and not something I completely suck at. The only thing that makes me hesitant to invest my time and money in this is that I have no idea how long it'll take me to sell them and having them sit on my shelf for six months before I find a buyer is not going to help me start up this band. I know quality is gonna make a big difference, but assuming I can pull off something of this quality, do you think I could make a few bucks off this in the next couple of months?

Last edited by Jellypox (March 18, 2015 4:04 am)

Thats sharpie.

I'd say it's somewhat of a risky venture,  at least if you want fast results...

Like you said,  quality is going to make a big difference... Make something cool and somebody will buy it...eventually.  If it's super awesome,  someone might scoop it up right away...  maybe.   Heck, you might make something super awesome and no one will buy it... You never know.

Keep in mind though,  I'm only speaking from experience selling modded DMG's  (non-painted) on eBay,  so I don't know what Etsy is like,  it may be different/better.

I don't want to dissuade you because I think it is a cool idea!  I just don't know if it's guaranteed quick cash... But I say go for it!  Perhaps you can get some junk Gameboys for cheap and just use the cases.  Then you could sell hand drawn cases,  just an idea.  PM me and I'll let you know a good place to score DMG's.

I've always wanted to try drawing on a Gameboy before... Going to have to try that with some Sharpies!

Also,  check out this rad Gameboy by KOOL SKULL !  Pretty amazing.

Last edited by RJL (March 18, 2015 3:45 am)

Having sold gameboys of various artistical quality, I can tell you that if you just want the money, there are way easier ways to go about doing that in a short time frame. Like a summer job doing retail or fast food. Honestly, that kind of gig would pay more, in a shorter amount of time. And if you haven't worked that kind of job yet, give it a shot. It does suck sometimes, but there are enjoyable parts and everyone should try it at least once. smile

I would say, get into painting on gameboys for fun and passion first, and maybe money second.

^^ good advice

paint houses. a couple grand profit from a  project is pretty sweet.

RJL, thanks for the insight, and by the way, that gameboy is friggin' level pro! I don't think I'll ever be as good as that guy. tongue
Arfink, thanks for the suggestion! I think that's what I'll do, carry on with the gameboy thing but go with something else for main income.
Bitjacker, hmm... that's not something I would have thought of. I'll try and look into that.

Protip:
Use a good quality coating for the finish.

That custom DMG Case was made with sharpies on white acrylic paint and got sum layer of coat on.
The sad thing is that the coat gave the white Paint a yellow tint and alot of the black sharpie lines got a bit purple and died out. I had to redraw alot of it and put better coat on.
Still, it's a great piece of work and it also was Kool Skulls first attempt at a custom GameBoy, so he didn't know how to put it down the best way.

if you're looking for a way to buy decent music gear for this summer, i'd suggest trying another venture.  you won't raise the funds this way.  unless you are amazeballs at it and can offer something which others aren't doing (and can't replicate easy), i don't think you'll get where you need to be with any sort of real spending money.  you'll raise enough for mediocre gear, at best.

for the time/labor involved, and without a customer-base especially, i think you'll have better results doing a lot of other things instead.

If you do opt to doing a "sharpie" style paintjob, look for the "Industrial" sharpies. Regular sharpie is difficult to seal.

Regarding making money on paintjobs... I only do paintjobs to expand my portfolio, I can't justify it otherwise. Realistically, very few want to pay fair compensation for the amount of time and cost of materials that go into a nice paintjob. Etsy might be a completely different demographic though.

I tried selling some small one off things on Etsy and figured out that unless you pay them to "promote" your products you'll end up buried so deep that barely anyone will ever see them.