I apologize in advance for the lack of brevity. Cut, for your pleasure.
A little backstory: Wanting to try out unfamiliar artists, I commissioned LatinVixen for two products when I was at EuroFurence 15, last year. The first product was for a sketchbook drawing (NSFW), which I got back, along with the book I gave her, somewhere around the end of the convention. The second product was for a badge, seeing as she has an amazingly cute toonish art style . We discussed it at her table, and I told her that I'd love to have one of her digitally colored badges and would not mind if she had to do it at home and send me a repro once she finished. She was paid up front and I received my sketchbook back with the pencil figure sketch some days later, towards the end of the con. The badge would take more time.
You might be seeing where this is going.
Now. EF15 was at the end of August 2009, and early that September we spoke again on whether she could post it online, which is fine with me, so long as I could also get a high quality print for badge-printing purposes, too. I hadn't heard a single peep from her for three months afterward. and upon messaging her about this she proceeded to tell me that she lost my commission detail information (but apparently not my contact info to ask me about it, since all it would take was checking her FurAffinity PM history from September to learn who had been in touch with her about commissions). So I re-wrote the details I had given her a few months prior, to her resolute word that she would have something finished sometime that month. Yeah, yeah, I know...
I was counseled by a friend that I just go on and ask for my money back. Believe me, I was highly tempted. But I decided to give her until late January, then go ask what the deal was and if she had done anything. I heard nothing back. Meanwhile, I'm seeing her continue to take new requests on FA. In comes February and I'm more than a little pissed, preparing to write her something cross. Then, lo and behold upon scanning her gallery to see how many names had come in after mine and gotten their badges before me...I spot this badge, by then two weeks old in posting.
She had already finished it two weeks before and simply not notified me. Just threw it up on her gallery and moved on in the assumption I'd run across it sometime.
Her response as to why she did/does that is down in the post itself. Frankly, I find her modus operandi to be lazy and unprofessional. You are doing this for a customer (who could praise you to others if you do well or spread bad reviews about you if you screw them), not to pad your gallery. Were it me, I would have sent my client a proof to make sure all was in line with what they wanted first BEFORE I posted it to my public gallery for dissemination with third parties. Unless I already had a conversation about what the customer wanted done with the picture otherwise. And where was my high quality version for printing? It's over a month past discovery (and the time she said she would postal mail it when I PM'd her about it in February) and I still have nothing.
So I suppose this is word of warning about commissioning this person, as well warning about the perception of poor service. As a customer I hate it when artists do this, because if anything, the way someone is treated has an effect on what they see in the product they get. When I look at this cute badge, I forget its notable cuteness that drew me to commissioning the artist in the first, and am instead reminded of an artist who seems so occupied with filling up her work queue that it seems like relating to a customer was just a sidebar. As an artist, I would feel ashamed at keeping someone who's trusted me with their money in the dark in this sloppy fashion. As a customer AND an artist, I can't recommend LatinVixen to anyone who wants assurance that they'll get what they pay for in a timely manner, if at all, without hounding them. It's up to you if you wish to try your luck or not.
I know I won't.