Arcticious (arcticious) wrote in artists_beware,

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Entering the world of commissions

So this year I've been thinking of opening up commissions, not for the monetary side of it, but the experiences. However, before I even think of advertising for open commissions, I really want to lay down a strong foundation of both knowledge, safety nets in case of anything going 'south', and just general knowledge that I'm on the right track. So these are some of the questions I have (I will put them in a cut):
The Work Load:
I was think that to begin with, I would open for icon commissions, character sheets/fursuit references, and the like, but purely digital. I want to only handle digital to begin with since I am unsure of shipping rules etc. And this is (if I'm correct) fairly low-risk as I won't lose anything but my own spare time if a commissioner backs out.

Dealing with Paypal and Deviantart for Commissions:
There were a few main questions I wanted to ask when dealing with starting up commissions. What would you experienced artists recommended as the 'host site' for payments? Is Paypal a good shot? And if so, since I am opting for Paypal since one has been established for me, what process do you need to do to set up receiving money for commissions (such as a "business" account)?
Also, is there any fee through Deviantart (The site im also opting to use for meeting commissioners and customers, and to display my work) for establishing these business connections, or is that only to host for prints?

Is being an Underage Artist Illegal/What should I be wary of?
The final main part I wanted to ask about is dealing with underage artists. I myself am only 17, however I have permission from my parents to use their Paypal (and already do for various online buying, since it is hooked up to my bank account). I understand that since, from what I've read, minors cannot be accepted into legally-binding contracts, that people may be wary of engaging in a transaction where there isn't much that can be done if it goes belly-up. However, I know my limits for requests (I do requests of art for my close friends, and know my limit) and feel that some time this year I will be able to handle a set of commissions at a time. Is there any law against underage artists taking commissions? I -never- want to enter or do anything illegally, which is why I want to ask the community of AB (i've been watching this community for quite a while, and have been in awe of the information that has come from everyone and the way it is run so respectfully) for their advice. I have already discussed this with my parents and they are in full support of me doing this, and only want to make sure that I'm safe throughout the process.
So what else do I need to know? I really want to start this as I said not for the money, but for the experiences... I am hoping to get into the art business and go through University next year, so I feel this would be great to learn and move through the start of my professional life.
Any advice would be so greatly appreciated, thank you all so much.
Tags: advice for artists

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