suzaku_ou (suzaku_ou) wrote in artists_beware,
suzaku_ou
suzaku_ou
artists_beware

Advice on how to deal with commissioners...?

WHO: http://korsetkoat.livejournal.com, http://iKissMantids.deviantart.com, http://MrsBishop.deviantart.com

WHERE: We contacted each other on teenycom and first did business through dA notes.

WHAT: She commissioned me for a lineart of a new character that her friend drew and included many references.

WHEN: Commissioned me on 10/24/10 and I was paid the day after.

EXPLAIN: This is a response to what she posted about me on 8/2/11.  All the proof on what wrongs I committed and whatever side people took are all there. No one even cared about my side, and since I realized that I started redrawing her commission again on the same day that she posted about this, I've been struggling to post my side because I went through a really bad time in my life.

On 12/29/10, I read her note but forgot to reply to it. It was a bad habit of mine since I had a lot of college coursework to complete and could only get on dA for several minutes when I'm free. 

A month later, I also read her note, but again, I felt really bad about forgetting to complete her commission. (And just because I ask for commissions, it doesn't mean that I receive any; I'm not a good artist.)

4/17/11 - The commission still wasn't completed by this time (I had a lot of early morning to late classes and should have managed my time more carefully) but I noticed that she wanted a refund. To me, it was not fair because I already completed 90% of her lineart. It was just a commission for a lineart, and I shouldn't have taken that long to finish it, but I didn't want to finish it. The artwork was horrible. And, like I told her honestly before, I had already spent the money to buy my cousin overseas an English-speaking dictionary. That was the reason why I started doing commissions in the fall of 2010. I told her that I wouldn't give her a refund and would be more than happy to draw her 1 or 2 more linearts to compensate since she "fell out of love" with her newest OC. Her statement, "Tired of arguing and tired of them, I conceded and agreed to let them finish my commission," was entirely biased and  was not what we agreed upon, especially when I did not try to act harshly or anything of the sort if you reread the screenshot.

During that time and June, I did not really have a break in-between. I even took summer classes (and my university gets out for break much later than other universities). I regret that I did not inform her this time either. However, I was planning on completing her commission the weekend before my classes started, but...

What I am about to say is in no means an excuse of any kind. One of my best friends suddenly committed suicide and I'm still slowly recovering from it. In early August, I messaged korsetkoat 2 times--ONCE on dA and another time on LJ since she did not reply.

This note.

She had 2 different responses to my messages. She replied to the LJ message first and then the dA note. This was her LJ pm and this was the 2nd reply on dA ("The pose is fine, thank you. I've replied to your LJ PM.").

This should be resolved.

PROOF

Not that anyone cared, but I wanted to write about my side of the story. I was really depressed back then and felt that I couldn't properly defend myself (whatever little there was to defend because it looked like everyone tore my reputation apart, even if I'm not even a popular artist). 

@latilombax: 2010 was my first year taking commissions. I was eager to take commissions because it was a good first experience for me. Unfortunately, I took more than I could handle and burned out while I was in school. Summer 2011 was supposed to be a time for me to complete all those Fall 2010 commissions but I opted to take summer courses to clear out the last of my gen-ed. I admit, it was wrong of me to not manage my time more wisely for commissions. (And, again, I didn't know how to deal with the real-life events that I encountered in June...)
But, compared to my worklist, there are some artists who have a speedless worklist of 10+ pending commissions and still ask for more. I kept my worklist to a minimum of 5 or less.

@asrasi/ogawaburukku: I almost completed her lineart and only needed to change minor things. No other commissioner, besides korsetkoat, has ever asked me for a refund. I've been commissioned ELEVEN times and ten of my commissioners have never complained; the people whose commissions I had still owed then have been very understanding about my situation.

If you were an artist and were almost done with someone's commission, how would you feel if they suddenly wanted a refund just because they "fell out of love" with their OC and even forgot about what type of commission they commissioned? She requested a lineart that was 90% finished, not a CG. If I did not work on it at all, it would have been more plausible.

I also did not like my old artwork. It honestly looked like crap to me. I did not want to finish it, and would rather happily start over on a new one, and even offered to do so. 

@undertow26: I did not ignore her note as of 8/4/11 (there is a link to one of my sent notes). She did not update this post. What type of person thinks, "I'll ignore it therefore the problem will go away"? This might be true for people who want to peacefully ignore a bully without violence, the top 1% on Wall Street who sit on trillions of dollars reserved for putting Americans back to work while protesters voice their opinions and last and basic of all, scammers who ignore people whose money they stole. I am not a scammer, as hard as it is to believe from korsetkoat's post.

My excuse for having previously "ignored" her notes is simply this: I had little time to reply because life got in the way. I was unorganized and did not mark the notes that were left un-replied. I'm doing a little better now because I star all the notes that I've read but have not been able to reply to.  

If you still don't believe me, I'll present the images that I've sent to korsetkoat:

Last WIP
Newly-drawn commission of her OC, Orrec
Redrawing of her newest OC
I even gave her a flat CG of the first commission.

Can you see the difference from the first picture and the redrawn one? She agreed to inking the version in the first WIP and I did, but I hated it a few months after. It wasn't something I was proud of and I'm glad I redrew it. It took 9 months to properly present, but it could have been finished in a week or so. That was due to my poor time management and depression-basically, LIFE.

I have learned from this experience, however, even if it came at a very bad time.

If anyone is still kind enough to offer me advice, despite my slandered reputation, I would very grateful.

1. How do would you deal with a commissioner like this if you did all the right things in the beginning but got off track due to school/life?
2. How personal is TOO PERSONAL when you screenshot proof of an artist's reply (in reference to this when presented to the public)?
3. I don't think I'll ever take commissions after I finish my current ones because of this bad experience, but if I do plan on doing some, should changes in my work schedule also be reflected in the commission info? Like a disclaimer: "Warning - I may not be available for periods at a time due to school/exams/projects/etc but rest assured that I will be working on your commission when I am free"?

I'll admit that I was wrong for keeping korsetkoat uninformed and should have communicated with her more if I managed my time better. But also, dealing with a close friend's death was not easy and still isn't. I don't think I should say this, but throughout the ordeal in August, I don't think she considered me a person with feelings. Maybe she only thought of her $15, I don't know, it's still kind of depressing thinking about it. 

She wasn't nice to me, but I'm kind of sure that she was a good commissioner to other artists. I don't want any more drama. I'm just glad that the other commissioners that I've dealt with during this time were kind enough to me, so I'll continue to work hard for them.
Tags: advice for artists, artist-kura-ou/suzaku-ou
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