I have been commissioning artists for longer than I've been on deviantart. In 2009, I wrote a news article called How to Commission an Artist (fav.me/d3jjb37), and I do my best to remember all the experience that went into writing that and to follow my own advice. That said, my life became very difficult after I left the military, and I have barely commissioned anyone in the past several years. My skills are rusty. Please forgive me as I relearn how to commission in 2014 and 2015.
Information I'm looking for:
1. What are your prices?
2. Do you use PayPal, or some other method of payment?
3. Do you want to be paid all upfront, all when the art is finished, or half and half?
4. Who has commissioned you in the past, and who is commissioning you now?
5. How long do you usually take to complete commissioned art?
6. Do you prefer to have a deadline?
7. Do you provide WIPs? (And if so, do you expect corrections/feedback, or is it just as a courtesy?)
8. What do you refuse to draw? What ALL do you refuse to draw, if you have only posted a partial list?
9. What do you prefer to draw, if anything?
10. Is there anything you would like to draw or experiment with, but have not found the time or an excuse to?
11. Do you stick to a character/object's design, or do you require 'artistic license'?
(I understand that a certain amount is inevitable. I'm asking if you try to stick to the design, or if you deliberately change details like clothing, hair style, age, etc. to make the character easier or more interesting to draw. I hire both kinds of artist.)
Quality I'm looking for:
2. Ability to draw commissions at nearly the same skill level as personal art
3. Consistent skill level (or no regression) over past 3-4 months
4. Consistent production of new art over past 6 months
5. Consistent style over past 12 months
6. Skill level better than mine (or equal but with color)
1. If I contact YOU, and your prices are publicly posted, I already agree to your prices and method of payment.
2. If you contact ME, and I do not know you, I will pay after the art is finished, not before.
3. Once we agree to the price, I save that money for you and do not spend it on something else, even if the art is not done for months.
4. I prefer using PayPal, but can pay another way if PayPal is not available in your country or if you are underage.
5. I tip.
I understand that life can be very busy, and I understand that even when life is not busy, there are reasons to not read a Note or email immediately or to not reply immediately. In fact, I rarely contact an artist while they are drawing for me. I am VERY patient (just ask pixelinkdust). However, I do expect the art to be done eventually! I welcome updates, WIPs (even if you want no feedback), and being told about delays, so that I know I'm not forgotten and that (in the worst cases) an artist didn't just take my money and run. If I have not heard from you in a while, I check your journal and activity first, then contact you if I still find no explanation. Please don't be offended or stress out if you hear from me-- I'm not trying to pester you, I just understand that keeping up with commissions can be difficult and want to know what's going on. If there's a problem, I might even be able to help.
Unless you are like saintpepsi, who prefers deadlines and wants me to pester him. Then you get pestered.
Artists commissioned in the past:
Ammotu (Pious+Unhae+Ookami portrait)
DarkVanessaLusT/DarkVanessa --drew 5/6 commissions that I intended as Xmas gifts for friends... see below doubleleaf (Mizkris with Ezio of Assassin's Creed 2)
DracheaRannak (Twygal, Pilots Pull and Tug)
DrStein (Cloud vs. a DnD Beholder, Famla Flamestalker) Eviemira (A.C. the spy with Unhae, Kidd, and baby Rafey; Rogue with neo A.C.; Fwori with Anc)
GloomyNekoChan (sketchy of Jenna)
Hellobaby (White Lady, Black Lady, Gray Lady)
metalheadkomik (Paladin Cass)
Minosch/NaRai (concept fullbodies of Lori Cur and Mysteria) Neko-Vi (Rasfta's mother's outfit)
Nith47 (only half-commissioned, for Link Masters, but aborted mid-way through after multiple "corrections" because it turned out my brother didn't have a complete idea of his own character)
Exileden (headsketches: Lorraine, 6 dragons)
Pirate-Cashoo --fullbody w/bg of Cassandra, Lorraine, and Corellia.. see below
pixelinkdust/IridescentInkSpell/Inkdust/o-raichu-o (Pious, Acelr, and A.C. the spy together; freebie of Lorraine; the Butterfly, Cassandra, the Seven Princesses) Rensing (Wanderer Ala lineart and color)
Rimfrost (two comics)
Rusinstein/Skyzen/Bedshaped_hero (Corellia as a very young farmwife, Pilot Tug, Manny bust) saintpepsi (Techie/Cross, Jynx, Rasfta, Rogue, Sarah Gray, Contact, Rockstar Jane, Kidd, Lori, Unhae, partial commercial commission) sakimichan (possessed and more adult Rasfta, Xeen as a submissive) thegryph (concept headshot of the Baroness) torikat (headshots of Rasfta, Cookie, and Rogue)
tsuaii/Gravija-Sunrise (Rachel Grayson)
vaoni (fantasy Cross sketch, Corellia the pirate, Acelr headshot) VSConcepts --journal CSS with Anikakinka's art in it... see below
xSassyLassyx/iZuu --first I ever commissioned (mix of the Baroness and Acelr)
Artists/groups I will not work with again:
Artists I have projects for:
DracheaRannak (Pilot Scout project) --lacking refs
Hellobaby (Demi-Goddesses project) --money reserved, forms prepared, as soon as she opens commissions!
Minosch (EYE project) --saving up money, preparing refs and descriptions, for whenever she has desire and time.
thegryph (Baroness-byArynChris project) --lacking money
Artists I am currently commissioning:
acidlullaby --$150 PAID 3MARCH2010 for painting of The Fiddler... see above
Antleraptor --12mo premium PAID for brass Ho3 cuff bracelet
inkscribble --$15-25?? unpaid for Twyguy Pilot Scout/senshi redesign
yueokinawa --$50 PAID for Pull w/bg, Tug w/bg
Artists I am currently contacting about commissions:
8AmyEmo8 --contact made; money reserved, working on the lineart for her to color
zwxART --contact made; waiting for commissions to open, $70 reserved for a waistup/bust of the Fiddler
johnsonting --email sent, no longer hoping for a reply
Lady2 --query Note sent, no longer expecting a reply
If you should be on these lists and I forgot you, please contact me. Especially if I owe you money or you'd like me to commission you again.
5Aug14: "Information" and "Communication" sections updated based on some of the discussion about this. The commission lists are updated whenever something changes, but those are minor; watchers will only be notified of an update to the top section.