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Commissioner on Wajas

I was advised to post about this person by a few friends, and I hope I'm doing this right :).

I recently decided to start taking commissions over on Wajas (a pet type site) just to get used to doing so again as I haven't done any in a couple years.

Anyway, my first commissioner was Faed, user #46760, and Lulltide on Deviantart.

She requested a full sized commission of her dog, a headshot which she wanted in the quality of my $30-35 range. We haggled the price down a bit to $25 whith the addition of one of the pet things on the site.

This agreement was made around April 18th or so and I made it clear to her that I had finals coming up (I am a Senior in college with a December graduation) and then I was moving into an apartment. I also made it clear that I'd never done an English Springer Spaniel, or anything close to it in my life.

The whole conversation between us can be found here:

I kept getting pms from her asking about progress, and the tone of them indicated that she wanted the picture sooner rather than later, so I finished it, asking what she thought, and that it coud be changed.

That's where the content of this entry comes in:

So, I responded, taking the advice given to me by the commentors in the above entry.

My response was:
"Okay, a few things,

I see where you're at on the mistakes and such, I had a few other artists give me some constructive crits. I am, as I have said before, perfectly willing to bo back and fix those. I like learning as much as the next person. I will say some of them are due to the fact that I am legally blind, which I mentioned in my commissions thread, such as the tilt of the head/ muzzle, etc. It is extremely difficult for me to see detail when there are strong contrasts (in this case the white and dark dog markings) right next to each other. None of the mistakes were there on purpose or from mere laziness. Often I need those with better sight to point things out to me before I myself see them. If you want to read more on the blindness stuff, go here:
http://windseeker.deviantart.com/journal/8191857/ Also, the fact that I had a very limited opportunity to actually work on this piece, with the impression that you wanted it sooner rather than later, at which point I would have had more opportunity to refine it, especially since this is a subject I have never done or attempted before.

Second, it seems a bit odd that you would give me that thorough critique and then be suddenly uninterested in my fixing it, when I have made it clear I would do so.

Third, considering the number of hours, at best guess, I would say at least 6, and that is at the very least, I put into this picture, I will not be refunding the half payment you made. Going by that math, I was paid less than half minimum wage, and is equivalent to $2 an hour, at the most, since I'm pretty sure it took more than 6 hours of work. I think I should be paid for the time I put in it already, and the work I have already done is worth at least the $12.50."

and her reply was this:
"I, myself, find it a bit odd that you would blame it all on your blindness when you have such wonderful, flawless wolf artwork. Just because you've never drawn [specifically] and English Springer Spaniel, doesn't mean you don't know how to draw canine eyes and correct proportions. But with your explaination of your blindness and the reason for your mistakes, you're pretty much telling my that you /can't/ fix it.

Also, I wrote more then once that I wasn't rushing you just because I messaged you. I wanted you to take all the time you needed to create a quality piece that I would be able to print and hang on my wall.

When I asked for my money back, it's because I felt like I paid for something I didn't get, not out of spite or some other childish reason. To me, you're getting paid for practicing, not for a commission...so by all means, enjoy your free $12.50. You know how much people love throwing away their hard earned cash. :)"

As one of my commentors to that entry said, "I just love how she tries to tell you that just because you have several awsome looking pictures, that it suddenly means you MUST be able to duplicate every piece of them 100% of the time 100% perfectly. Obviously this person doesn't know anything about what it is to actualy create something more than once. :/"

I strongly suggest anyone not take commissions from her because her apparently lack of understanding of knowing how to do different art subjects is blatant, as well as her complete lack of wanting to be patient and work with me to fix the stated issues with the picture.
Artist's beware has moved!
Do NOT repost your old bewares. They are being archived.


( 50 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 16th, 2008 03:24 am (UTC)
Windseeker, if someone tries to pull this crap with you again while on Wajas, contact a mod or submit a report. I don't think we really have jurisdiction over this one since it as handled off-site and was in USD instead of game payment... but I'm still stunned that this person was so incredibly rude and snobbish to you.

In the future, though, depending on the circumstances, we might be able to help 'referee' a similar situation if they're stiffing you on payment.
May. 16th, 2008 10:46 pm (UTC)
May. 16th, 2008 03:27 am (UTC)
I'd just... fix it if I were you. All it's gonna take is moving the eye down and doing a tiny bit more painting to make the edges blend in. Not gonna take much work and everyone'll go home happy.

Granted, I didn't read all the correspondence between you two, I'm sorry if I'm oversimplifying the issue.
May. 16th, 2008 01:21 pm (UTC)
The problem is the commissioner doesn't want it fixed and is demanding a refund, not that the OP isn't willing to fix it. They offered to fix it several times in the correspondence. It sounds like she'd be fixing it for free at this point and that the commissioner wouldn't appreciate/want it anyway. :(
(no subject) - growly - May. 16th, 2008 04:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
May. 16th, 2008 06:06 am (UTC)
That's pretty rude to not even comment on the main subject of the journal. But to humor your rudeness, it's because Windseeker is legally blind. And while many people say "i am legally blind" don't think of it too lightly with Windy. It's a little different with her, to the point that she has a seeing eye dog, even. The fact that she continues to work on her art and improve even through this handicap that she hasn't always had is truly inspirational. She is a great person to know, and learn from.
May. 16th, 2008 03:28 am (UTC)
If it were me, I would have straight-out told her that she would have to wait for the picture to be completed.

I am so sorry, but if you can't wait a while for a commission because of SCHOOL WORK then you can take your money somewhere else. I sympathize with you becaues I'm going through finals right now.

My schoolwork will not be compromized because of a commission. That's my thoughts.
May. 16th, 2008 03:29 am (UTC)
Well, I will say I understand why she was a bit upset, but not why she wouldn't work with you more; the piece is actually quite nice, except the eyes are very off. Unfortunately, eyes are practically the first thing people look at, and the picture comes off as looking pretty creepy :/ Maybe she just got really turned off by it.

That said, the commissioner can't possibly know what you do and don't have difficulties with with your eyes, nor whether you would be able to fix the portrait. D: And you were more than fair with your refund. Bull @#$@# on a "Free" $12.50, you explained nicely enough you put 6 hrs of work in it D:
May. 16th, 2008 04:17 am (UTC)
Ummm, second thought, she stated RIGHT AWAY she was a concerned over the timeframe. From what I can see, you were not very clear on exactly when you would be able to work on the picture, (would bump the timeframe up to please her). So... I think you should have been more clear on when you wouldn't be able to talk, and possibly have simply passed on the commission when she said she "didn't want to wait a month between updates" and you knew you'd probably need away time.
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 04:30 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - armaina - May. 16th, 2008 05:18 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 05:21 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - armaina - May. 16th, 2008 05:27 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - alcyione - May. 17th, 2008 08:23 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 17th, 2008 08:34 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - spiffystuff - May. 16th, 2008 05:30 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 05:35 am (UTC) - Expand
May. 16th, 2008 04:15 am (UTC)
Bleck... What a ridiculous way to be... Downright snobbish, and frankly, all it really needs is for the eye on the left to be tilted and raised a tad to bring it in line (think a curved line across a circle). It's not like youre the only person to even botch an eye on a dog either. Frankly, it happened to me while I was trying to do two commissions of someones dogs. Uptilted faces are just odd and fiddly like that.

Besides, the whole reason for sending progress shots is to make sure that your commisioner likes what theyre getting, bottom line being - if you dont want to work with the person you plan on paying, dont be commissioning things. Of course the inverse is also true, but you were obviously willing to work with her, so thats hardly the problem here.

*shakes head* Why are there so many dense people in the world?...
May. 16th, 2008 04:45 am (UTC)
I might come off as the devil's advocate...

I think this is a case of flaws of both artist and commissioner colliding.

The customer was actually pretty adamant about the time frame and if you weren't going to give it the proper time you meant to, you should have turned it down. If you made it clear you were too busy not to rush it, the customer should have left you alone and gone elsewhere.

In all honesty, I'd be kind of surprised/confused if I got a commission with eyes like that when the rest of your gallery shows a pretty clear understanding of facial construction. That's not to say everyone should expect your best most awesomest thing whenever they commission you, but this is basic face anatomy here, a sound and common expectation.

But it's not something that couldn't be fixed. The customer has no grounds for a full refund when you've already completed it and offered to fix flaws. The whole "here's a free 12.50" thing and asking a refund are really the only things I found rude in the customer's writings.
May. 16th, 2008 04:50 am (UTC)
The main difficulty with this particular piece was the lack of a specific reference photo. With most of my work (barring dragons and certain other fantasy creatures) I generally have one photo to reference from, with this one, I had one for the angle (which was not of her specific dog) and one for the markings as she was apparently unable to provide me with the photo she would have liked to have referenced.
(no subject) - aaaamory - May. 16th, 2008 05:07 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - thrivis - May. 16th, 2008 05:14 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 05:19 am (UTC) - Expand
May. 16th, 2008 04:57 am (UTC)

Hate to say this but those are some seriously wonky eyes. I think they'd disturb me as well, still that's no cause for her to freak out on you after you offered to fix it.

Have you considered moving into a more 3D medium giving your sight? If it's that bad then perhaps sculpture would suit you better.
May. 16th, 2008 05:05 am (UTC)
Hehe, no. I, unfortunately also have cerebral palsy in both of my hands (it is much less pronounced in my "drawing" hand, but is still present,) so I can't feel things well enough to do that I think. The drawing stuff I've done for so many years and it doesn't require as much tactile sensation, it does require me to frequently flip my canvases around because it is difficult for me to do strokes in certain directions or to be able to draw smooth lines. I don't usually mention it as often when it comes to art because its much harder to explain to an average person.
(no subject) - lilenth - May. 16th, 2008 05:12 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - growing_rose - May. 16th, 2008 06:37 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 06:40 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - lilenth - May. 16th, 2008 06:55 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - growing_rose - May. 16th, 2008 12:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - lilenth - May. 16th, 2008 12:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - growing_rose - May. 16th, 2008 12:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - lilenth - May. 16th, 2008 01:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - growing_rose - May. 16th, 2008 08:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 09:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - growly - May. 16th, 2008 04:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 04:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - lilenth - May. 16th, 2008 05:31 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - growing_rose - May. 16th, 2008 08:01 pm (UTC) - Expand
May. 16th, 2008 05:24 am (UTC)
Other than the eye, the portrait seems like the quality of the rest of your stuff so I don't know what she's complaining about quality wise. I think the touch up is more than reasonable... but only if she pays you the other half, otherwise, no deal.

"To me, you're getting paid for practicing, not for a commission...so by all means, enjoy your free $12.50." This comment really bothers me of course, because you said in the beginning you've never drawn that breed of dog before.

Of course you know, technically all sorts of people get 'paid to practice' all the time >_> All artists get thrown something they haven't exactly done before, doesn't mean they don't deserve compensation.
May. 16th, 2008 05:27 am (UTC)
Yea, the practice thing doesn't bother me since it was my first dog like that, but the "free $12.50" and that she was completely disinterested in my trying to fix it stung.
(Deleted comment)
May. 16th, 2008 05:45 am (UTC)
I think I used this one, it was 2 years ago, but I'm pretty sure it was this:
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - windseeker03 - May. 16th, 2008 06:06 am (UTC) - Expand
May. 16th, 2008 06:00 am (UTC)
Hmmm I didn't see anything worth warranting an artists_beware type warning. Even if there was some disagreement and dissatisfaction, I thought her responses were pretty polite for the most part and also fairly clear what she wanted. And the drawing does have some obvious flaws, so I'd say her dissatisfaction was warranted. I think you would have had an easier time modifying the painting rather than arguing with her.

I think for next time, you should have a prewritten blurb handy to explain your refund policy, to avoid this situation in the future :)
May. 16th, 2008 07:47 am (UTC)
"enjoy your free $12.50. You know how much people love throwing away their hard earned cash. :)"

About as much as people enjoy working hard for no money.

The eyes are kinda lopsided, but especially in digital work that's not hard to fix. But if she isn't interested in you fixing it, keep the money for the time and effort you already put it.
May. 16th, 2008 05:21 pm (UTC)
I find it really rude how everyone has to attack your art here.
Even if the eyes are off, the quality of the picture if worth more then $25.
The commissioner didn't like something you offered to fix they declined I'd say they still owe you money.
I also find it rude how some people are saying "just because your blind is no excuse!" Yes it is very much so. How about you squint your eyes reallllyyyyy tight were everything is blurry and try doing a realism portrait.

May. 16th, 2008 08:24 pm (UTC)
No comment on the situation... I think you have enough feedback to figure out what you need to do here.

But if your going to take commissions as a blind artists you really need an agreement for the benefit of you and your customers.

You need something in black and white stating you are legally blind and in commissioning you the commissioner accepts that.

I don't think this is really a righteous reason to tell others not to commission her, she seems very polite. Some people take things harder than others.

Sort this out but i recommend you right a set of terms, like I said, explaining the situation, because even I didn't know until now you were legally blind. You need to make sure people know and agree to that.
May. 16th, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)
I had the fact that I was legally blind clearly stated at the top of my commissions thread, and there are several mentions of it in various places in my dA gallery as well.

I did not post here because of my blindness, I posted here due to the fact that she did not want me to fix the commission (even though I offered several times) and wanted a refund of the half payment she'd made to me. And as a heads up because she seemed to not understand that just because one is proficient in some subjects, one is not necessarily going to show the same skill in subjects one has much less experience with.
May. 18th, 2008 02:26 am (UTC)
i don't know if this is the right place to say this, and i only saw the thumbnail and when i looked again i saw what she meant by the nose and eye to an extent

even so, if i payed $25 $35 for a commissioned portrait of my pet, and in such a short time at such a time in your life that turned up, and perticualy since you are legally blind ... which tom me makes the picture more interesting i hope thats not offensive ... and offered to fix all of the mistakes ... i would be orgasmicly happy!

in fact, if you r still around, i might comish yuo myself on the strength of that pic

can't really offer any helpful feedback other then that, but yes i think she was unreasonable. not at first, but she would have got what she paid for and i feel she was both unfair and rude, and breached the contract

i choose not to take commishes, but order many, so i'm no expert but thats my opinion
May. 18th, 2008 02:29 am (UTC)
I still take commissions when and if you ever want to get one :)
( 50 comments — Leave a comment )


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