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Bad Experience with DerSheltie on DA

I will start off by saying that, since my English grammar is not the best, I had my friend (who is fluent in English) edit this entry for grammar, spelling, and structure, so that it is easier for everyone to read. None of the notes/comments/journals quoted in this entry are edited, and that is why the English in those is not as good.

I am Wolfie83 on DeviantART, and I commissioned DerSheltie on DeviantART because I admired his wonderful artwork and envied his talent. I am from Sweden and DerSheltie is from Japan. We communicated in English because that is our common language, though neither of us are perfect at it, as you can see in the correspondences.

On 28 May 2009, I started talking to him about a possible commission through comments on his DA profile. He had no price sheet, terms of service, or any information about commissions at all in any of his journal entries (I think I was one of the first people to ever commission him). Here is a screenshot of all the comments (I have put arrows next to everywhere that we discussed pricing):

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/convo-1.jpg

So then, a little while passed, and I got a note from him with a pre-sketch, asking if I was still interested. Here is the conversation:

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/notes1.jpg

From this conversation and the previous one, I thought he had accepted my offer of $20 - $30. So, on 27 June 2009, he posted the finished commission to DA. I loved the picture, even though he had left off my character’s signature eye-scars, and got the eye color wrong, but I asked if he could change it, and he said that he could, and apologized for getting that wrong (that part of the conversation was in the comments on the DA picture, which are now hidden). In the meantime (before he made any changes), I sent a payment of $25, which was in the price range that I thought we had agreed on earlier.

Here is the conversation from the completion of the commission (before revisions) to the payment:

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/notes3.jpg

DerSheltie also did the corrections I requested, though I was not able to open the download page. I asked him if he could email the file to me, but since the problems started right after this, he did not email the file to me or help me access it. Here is the conversation about the revision file:

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/notes2.jpg

The following link is a continuation of the note conversation above (I’ve quoted the last thing that was said), which started after I had sent the payment. This is where the problems started:

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/notes4-1.jpg
http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/notes5.jpg

So, I sent the payment, and DerSheltie refused it.

I’m not that good at English, so I thought maybe I said something wrong or missed something. I made a journal on DeviantART (seen here: http://wolfie83.deviantart.com/journal/25644045/ ) and showed our conversation in the notes, to ask if I did something wrong. I removed derSheltie’s name from all the notes. However, he commented on my journal in such a way that everyone knew who it was that I was talking about.

Later on, in different arguments with different people (all of which can be seen in my DA journal), he told someone else (he never told ME this, but told someone ELSE afterwards) the following:

If she paid $30, I would bear.
$40, I would compromise.
$50, I would be satisfied.
Actually I have requested jobs several times. The price that the opponent suggests were sometime over $100 per one work.
For example, I received $500 when I accepted this three logos.


Link to full comment: http://comments.deviantart.com/5/25644045/1114081914 So apparently, he deliberately made artwork that he thought was worth about double the amount that I offered him and that, I believed, he had approved.

In that comment, he also says:

Surely several points of that trouble caused by my ambiguous way of saying. I should think there are people who can't understand others' delicate expressions.

So he knew he was being ambiguous, but got angry when I didn’t pick up on his ambiguity, even when neither of us are native to English and really, neither of us are all that great at English either.

According to some of the comments on the deviation itself, he says he expected me to pay more because he assumed I was not a student and had a job, because of my age. Here is the string of comments:

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/comments.jpg

He changed the image to be his own character (that doesn’t bother me), but what does bother me is what he wrote in the description (as of 8 July 2009), which can be seen here:

http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii183/wolfie83/description.jpg

Here is the link to the picture on DeviantART: http://dersheltie.deviantart.com/art/Indomitable-Wolf-127404330

I don’t think I can do anything to change this person’s mind. But I think I am right (please correct me if I am not) in warning others not to trust this artist with commissions. He doesn’t say his expectations, speaks ambiguously, and treats his clients with disrespect for not playing his guessing games.

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Comments

( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
weirdmisty
Jul. 11th, 2009 04:52 am (UTC)
As far as I can tell, you've done nothing wrong in this exchange. Either he didn't understand what you were saying, or he's trying to pull one over on you, but either way, you are definitely in the right when warning against this one.
alaitallon
Jul. 11th, 2009 05:07 am (UTC)
Though I can definitely see a big language barrier here, I agree that you were not in the wrong at all. You asked several times what the price was and he never told you. He acted like he was willing to bargain with you, so you did. He has no right to cry over it after he accepted the price.

Considering the way he acted towards you, I can honestly say I will never commission this person. Thanks for the warning!
casteddreams
Jul. 11th, 2009 05:26 am (UTC)
I agree with everyone else, you are not in the wrong here.

Thank you for warning us!
oceandezignz
Jul. 11th, 2009 06:41 am (UTC)
... that ain't very cool. At all. You're definitely in the clear and I'll not recommend them to anyone.
feather_dancer
Jul. 11th, 2009 07:27 am (UTC)
Definately not in the wrong. Too much assuming and back peddling making him look all the poorer for it. A warning much deserved!
aerfox
Jul. 11th, 2009 09:14 am (UTC)
Speaking with ambiguity when closing certain transactions seems to be a part of Japanese culture.
I think he didn't want to appear rude by stating set prices, but preferred to accept whatever the other person felt the art was worth.
aerfox
Jul. 11th, 2009 09:16 am (UTC)
Also. I ought to say...
$25 for his level of work is not enough.

I am not trying to insult you. :3
lilenth
Jul. 11th, 2009 12:12 pm (UTC)

Not enough?

*looks at gallery* I think you should look again and consider the Japanese exchange rate, and going rates for Japanese artists. Especially since some of dersheltie's work I strongly suspect may be traced or at least heavily copied from various sources including wolf's Rain (sp?) and if they aren't copied then his grasp on anatomy is shaky at best.
aerfox
Jul. 11th, 2009 02:33 pm (UTC)
I didn't look toooooo closely, yes the artist isn't overly skilled, but I'd still say $35 or so, judging on the colouring.
lilenth
Jul. 11th, 2009 05:20 pm (UTC)

I did, heavily copied work done from wolf's rain images/partially traced/copied from real photos isn't worth $35. Those familiar with the look of the series or who've seen the photos he might have used can clearly see that where his ability takes a sudden dive without something to heavily reference/trace.
celestinaketzia
Jul. 12th, 2009 04:27 am (UTC)
Oh, he's shown up in smartsnark before. He definitely has traced a few images.
lilenth
Jul. 12th, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC)

I'm not terribly surprised. Alarm bells started ringing for me from the minute I looked at his gallery.
lilenth
Jul. 11th, 2009 11:58 am (UTC)

This Dersheltie seems very unsuited to accepting commissions, though I doubt you helped matters by saying he was being a bitch even if you didn't name him in your journal. Admittedly I think he was more to blame because he did not answer your question or try to negotiate better, but still slinging insults was poor form on your part.

That said, there are plenty of other artists who would be happy to sell you a commission so don't let this poor exchange sour you on art.
the_lest
Jul. 11th, 2009 12:30 pm (UTC)
I agree with everyone else: you're right, Dersheltie is wrong.
feather_dancer
Jul. 11th, 2009 03:00 pm (UTC)
He blocked me from his DA and hid my posts, can't say anything bad or helpful for future business transactions about him clearly! :)
breakingpencils
Jul. 11th, 2009 04:03 pm (UTC)
wow he is so unprofessional, thanks for the warning.
And jezz what's up with his signature.
Don't worry, you're right and he's wrong. When I read the stuff he have written I only think he is very childish.
isteillia
Jul. 11th, 2009 05:48 pm (UTC)
Not only did you not do anything wrong but the fact that he slandered you all over the description of that piece has put him in a bad position- he won't get many intelligent people commissioning him after that- only the retarded tweenies that immediately took his side.
spiffystuff
Jul. 11th, 2009 05:54 pm (UTC)
Yes, the artist in this case is *totally* wrong. You just can't quote one price then expect someone to be able to pay up more, even if you do do twice the work or whatever. Who knows if that person has the money?
It seems like they wanted to "surprise" you and expected you'd be so overwhelmed with happiness you'd double your offer. IDK. Not the proper thing to do.

A piece of advice, though, usually saying an artist has "talent" and "can easily make money" can be a bit insulting, even if you meant it as a compliment. Mostly because a) you don't really know how hard they worked on the piece (if it took them all day, or more, $30/day really isn't a good wage at all) and b) the word "talent" sort of implies an innate ability that one doesn't have to work at. (I realize english is not your first language and you may not know these nuances, that's why I'm telling it to you) Most artists who are good do have talent, but they have also put in a lot of hard work and practice. An artist with talent and no hard work behind them tends to look attractive in places, but overall sloppy. Anyway, what I'm saying is a much more flattering word is "skill" - and probably just skip any comments on how much money they must be making :P
selunca
Jul. 11th, 2009 07:30 pm (UTC)
I gotta say that I feel the artist was waaay out of line.
She should have given you a price upfront, instead of asking you to 'pick a price"
obsidianwolfess
Jul. 11th, 2009 07:30 pm (UTC)
Agreeing with everyone else. DerSheltie is someone I'm going to avoid. Thanks for letting us know!
saeto15
Jul. 12th, 2009 02:29 am (UTC)
Wow. I'm sorry you had such a horrible experience. I think 25$ is more than enough for that level of work, considering. The person just got greedy.
stormslegacy
Jul. 13th, 2009 08:48 pm (UTC)
Doesn't mean he doesn't belong here, but I think that the above commenter who commented on japanese culture may be correct; I think his feeling of insult was a cultural thing. Deals seem to work differently in japan due to the politeness, and in my experience business has a whole "reject, reject, accept" aspect to it.

That said, I still wouldn't want to go through the trouble of dealing with him in a business setting.
wolfie83
Oct. 17th, 2009 03:17 pm (UTC)
New news
It have been quite calm until now or well, I got upset then I saw this. One online friend of mine saw this and send me a note about this:
Is from his DeviantID
××× Hate ×××
- People who hate and look down to the other countries, wildlife and nature
- People who have a distort way of thinking about the nature, wildlife and ecosystem
- People who think human stand on the center of the world
- Hunters who kill the wildlife without good reason
( I think it's never a manly act. )
- Yankeedog (Don Henderson), Wolfie83

I don´t know I feel like he isn´t very mature and not fun if people get the wrong idea about me XD
Well I feel like he is like 12 years old or something
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )

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