Name of Business: Wild Dog Horizons
Links: FA: www.furaffinity.net/user/kiniro/ Website: vindalf.net/fursuits/index.html LJ: kiniro-oniba.livejournal.com/
Commission: A pair of hands and feet for a troll (World of Warcraft) costume.
Status: Commission is apparently complete, but I have yet to see any photos of the finished items.
Problem: Kiniro disappeared without warning over three months ago. Not answering FA notes or emails.
Everything with this commission was going absolutely fine until about three months ago. Kiniro was being attentive and friendly, providing me with fairly regular updates and WIP photos. Then, on November 9th 2010, she sends me a note on FA (FA being where all of our communication for this commission took place) saying that she'd finished making the hands & feet, and goes straight into asking for shipping details without showing me a single photo of the finished items. Naturally I ask to see some photos because handing over any shipping money. The last message I received from Kiniro was again on Nov 9th when she told me that she would be happy to take some photos as soon as she could get some new batteries for her camera. I haven't heard anything from her since. I've sent her several FA notes and emails but have had no response whatsoever.
Now, the last update on her website, on Dec 6th, states that her school work has left her unable to do any work on fursuits, and that she will resume commission work in the new year. So much for that. I also recently noticed on her FA page that she states 'I work rather slowly on commissions during the school year, and I do try to warn my customers of that. During the summer, however, I work on costumes full time'. Right. Well it's one thing to put a hold on commissions due to education commitments - that, while unprofessional and annoying, is acceptable provided you actually continue to answer your customers' enquiries. Ceasing communication altogether is outrageous. Making me wait until the summer holidays for a commission she finished in November is even worse (I assume this what will end up happening). I don't understand what she could be doing that's preventing her from quickly answering a few emails.
The most annoying thing is that I can't even prompt a response by opening a paypal claim, as it's been more than 45 days since I sent my final payment for the commission. I just don't know what to do. Can anyone offer any advice? Are there any other entries on Artists Beware involving this fursuit maker that you could link me to? Also it would be great if someone could fill me in on when school/college/university breaks usually occur in the US, as that will give me an idea of when Kiniro should technically be free to contact me.
Kiniro seems like a friendly person and does great work, but I wouldn't recommend that anyone commissions her at least until she's finished her training program. She is obviously unable to handle both workloads, making it extremely unfair of her to accept peoples' money in the first place.
Update 14/3/11: I happened to check Kiniro's website today, and saw that she posted an update on the 7th - vindalf.net/fursuits/index.html While this doesn't solve the problem of me still needing to see some photos of the completed items, at least I now know that she is still out there and intending to, at some point, finish what she started. I have yet to receive any direct contact from Kiniro. I installed AIM specifically to try and get hold of her that way, but have not seen her online as of yet. I have not yet emailed her friend Vindalf. Hopefully I will not have to.