poor character references; old character references; no references
And now that Anthrocon is over and most artists are at home trying to round up their commissions before they travel or go back to work/college -- the complaints I hear the most are very similar:
poor character references; old character references; no references; they won't respond to my e-mail requests for more information
...Those of you out there who have purchased commissions have as much responsibility to make sure the artwork comes out correctly as the artists do.
Also: just about every artist I met that was at Anthrocon has only a limited window of time before their other responsibilities force them to put commissions on the back-burner. If you do not move FAST on these artists' requests for more details, you could receive an improperly done image, or be put on hold for a very long time. (And then you risk making a fool of yourself by complaining to this journal about a project that you, in fact, dropped the ball on.)
Get back to work.