noctowl (noctowl) wrote in artists_beware,

Needing advice on unresponsive artist

Sorry if I do something wrong but I just need ask couple things before I make a proper post. And so sorry this is bit long but I feel like having to tell details to get help...

I commissioned a fursuit maker for a partial on October 4th 2012 that should be finished by February 15th 2013 for a con, it was all fine and dandy till I had paid half of the total price on October 15th, so they could start working on my suit. They posted commission queue around the same time on their business Facebook and there was two suit commissions before mine and one after mine.

By this time, last email I had received was on October 5th when I had sent the first payment. I was being a little worried because I hadn't heard from them for such long time so I sent them email asking how's it going on November 2nd and got response on 4th telling that they had purchased the materials, but they were working on the first two commissions at the moment. I decided to wait a god while before sending another payment so I sent the next payment on January 2nd but I had asked for possible pictures on Decemeber, but never got any kind of response. I got response on January 2nd about them going to finish all foam bases by the end of the week and that they would send me pictures then because they got a new camera. I was doubtful about the deadline because it was just about a month till the con and I hadn't gotten any kind of progress other than an email saying that they SHOULD finish the foam base in a week. Well never got any pics on that week or the next.

On January 19th I sent email about second last payment being made and asked if the suit would be finished by the deadline. I didn't get any kind of answer to that email. I think I sent one email in late January asking for pics but never got answer for that either. I sent another email on February 4th if the suit was going to be made by the deadline saying and they answered on the same day, telling me probably not and I kind of actually knew it already. In that email they also said that they would be sending pics that week but of course never got any.

Well the con came and went and I didn't get any pictures by the con or after. I sent yet another email about the pictures on February 19th and didn't get answer. And by this time, they had made two premade tails for sale (Dec 18th), a furry themed hat for themselves (Jan 2nd), two fursuit heads (Jan 12th and Feb 7th) and tail for themselves (Feb 12th). That is according to their business Facebook page.

I decided to just wait because I was so frustrated and my girlfriend was telling me to get my money back but the maker's site tells that I cannot get any kind of refund if the work has been started (and I assumed that it has been started and I really wanted this suit). On March 4th I got an email from the maker, telling me that they were on two week long family vacation and weren't able to make suits during that time. Yet again told me that they would work on suits on upcoming weekend but wouldn't be able to send pics (no reason told). Well I haven't had any kind of updates or emails since that and I just sent email on March 21st asking for possible progress and telling that I would sent the very last payment in early April. I haven't gotten any response to that of course.

I'm really frustrated because I know someone who has commissioned suit from this maker last year and that went MUCH smoother that what is has been for me. I've told them that I would appreciate if the suit was done by May because the first deadline was missed and I wouldn't need the suit until June when is the next con I'm attending. I've made the payments via bank transfer because that's easiest method in my country but I cannot of course do chargeback or anything, so I would need to take this case to police if I wanted my money back (I just really want the suit and don't want to do that really).
So far I have paid 220€ out of the total 260€ for this partial, I have the money for the last payment but I don't want to send it before I get some kind evidence of progress.

Should I keep trying to get them respond with sending more emails, like almost daily? I know they are online daily because they are active on their personal Facebook but don't understand why they take at least a week to respond on emails. Am I being too nice about this? This is my first time commissioning something this big and it's pretty bad experience so far. But the last thing I want is that they rush my suit...
Tags: advice for commissioners, fursuit
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