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Advice for an Artist?

Recently someone has been going around to artist gossip/hate blogs and telling everyone that they are one of my commissioners and have either lost contact/been on the receiving end of rude emails/notes from me. They also are stating that they have repeatedly noted/emailed me and asked me for a refund and that I have refused/given excuses/been rude. They are also threatening to create an artists_beware entry on me.

The thing is...I have no such customer.

I can honestly say that I've uploaded WIPs for nearly every customer that is remaining on my list. Five of which that don't have WIPs are either new commissions, or I have otherwise contacted/given WIPs. All notes that I have received regarding a commission have been replied to, not once have I ignored a commissioner. When asked for a WIP or update, I provide, and I make it my business to be as polite as possible and to avoid all conflict if possible.

I'm worried that this person will continue to attack me through these peripheral websites, or worse, photoshop some 'evidence' and cause me to lose existing customers.

What should I do in the case of them fabricating evidence against me? Should I ignore them? Because it seems that the more I ignore them the more they feel they need to escalate things. I keep track of all of my notes on dA and my commission list is public on my front page.

-confused artist

(skip this if you want, my main problem is above)
To be completely honest, this person sounds like an unhappy commissioner I had earlier this year. They asked me to issue them a refund because of the length of time it took for me to complete their commission. They ordered six pieces of art, two of which were completed early as a kind gesture on my part, she was last in the line of eleven commissions, and I knew she'd have to wait a while to get hers.

I spend an average of 12-15 hours or more on each piece of art (if they have detailed backgrounds) and probably 4-5 hours or so if there is no background. This plus full time university plus a DV case means that I can probably spend 3-4 hours on each commission every week.

So if you do the math, 4 hours per week divided 12-15 hours per commission could easily equal 3-4 weeks. Multiply that by the amount of customers ahead of her? You can see where I'm going with this.

Regardless of the wait ahead of her, I sent her two of her six orders, and when asked for an update, I kindly explained to her that she was last in a long line of commissions and that I would get to it as soon as possible. Five months later, I had completed nearly all of the commissions ahead of her when I got a note asking to cancel her commission as she had not received any updates and that she never lets any of her customers wait longer than a week so I should do the same, regardless of the fact that our styles are at two opposite ends of the "time it takes to draw" spectrum. Does that make sense?

tl:dr, I refunded her commission even though I had done all of the lineart and completed two of her commissions. She was still unhappy and proceeded to trash talk me on her page, leaving out the fact that I DID give her WIPS and completed artwork, AND that I refunded her money without question.

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Comments

( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
epiceternity
Jul. 28th, 2013 04:23 pm (UTC)
The main thing is to make sure you keep your evidence so you can prove your side of transaction. The completed pics, the WIPs, the paypal receipt of the refund and as many of the messages/note (and journal screen shots if you have one that covers work queue) etc.
Then if the worse comes to the worse then you can prove the other is fabricating events or if you want to post a beware.

You could always create a blog page or something similar to present your evidence which you can then link to in your art journal if you're worried that customers might believe the false accusations. That should also avoid the issue of call out journal.

Not sure what else to suggest, grudges from soured commissions do occur from time to time.
funkicarus
Jul. 28th, 2013 04:43 pm (UTC)
this all sounds like good advice, i'm seconding this.

there's also the off-chance that they've confused you with someone else, or someone is posing as you on another site you're unaware of. i had that happen once. imagine the person's surprise when they discovered their cabin-mate from summer camp was not, in fact, the artist they were contacting (as he had claimed to be!)
wolf_goat
Jul. 28th, 2013 05:10 pm (UTC)
This can happen - you can be mixed up with another artist. I was mistaken for a notorious "serial scammer" artist one time because my username was vaguely similar to one of the several they'd used. Not super close but enough for this one guy to see it and go "hey wait a minute..." (my art style wasn't even remotely close to theirs - but he still sent me an angry note and email!).

It sounds like this person may be crazy, but there is always the chance that they are very mixed up?
kyeoulsarang
Jul. 28th, 2013 05:42 pm (UTC)
I'm pretty sure they're not confusing me with someone else. My username is pretty unique--and only four letters--with a specific spelling, and they clearly expressed that it was me. :/
anjel_kitty
Jul. 28th, 2013 06:14 pm (UTC)
Second this. It may just be one massive understanding. It may be worth it to go to that person calmly and politely and make sure that they have the right artist.
anjel_kitty
Jul. 28th, 2013 05:40 pm (UTC)
well I'd say if this person is threatening to post you on here with their "evidence" tell them to go ahead. If you have your own verification of the events, at least you can publicly clear your name on a reputable forum. Then any other claims this person has to the contrary will just be seen as drama and harassment.
dinogrrl
Jul. 28th, 2013 06:34 pm (UTC)
What the others have said. If you have the evidence to back up your side of the story, you're set. As for how to proceed, that's really up to you. It might be that if you just don't do anything, this person will get bored and leave you alone and that'll be that. If you really feel this is the kind of person who will drag this on or even escalate it, it might be worthwhile to at least prepare a post explaining your side of the story, even if you don't post it right this minute.

Good luck, this is an odd and frustrating situation :/.
neolucky
Jul. 28th, 2013 10:44 pm (UTC)
The only thing that has me scratching my head is...you state you had no customers like this, then go on the explain that you did. You DID have an unhappy customer that may have sought it fit to lash out on you later. So this post confuses me a bit for that reason.

Make sure you get your ducks in a row and ask them for a screenshot of payment to you - if they cannot provide it then brush them off your shoulder as a misunderstanding and try to ignore it.

If they do try to AB you, their post will truly only be allowed if they have all the proper evidence and we mods are very thorough on investigating those details. If for some reason they are approved, be ready to have your side of things covered and to civily explain your end of it.

One question: In those five months you spent on the rest of her art, did you try to contact her with progress? Was there any communication at all? If not...then you may have dropped the ball on that commission. Regardless of how many hours you put into them, communication is absolutely the key to maintaining a good relationship in freelance.
teekchan
Jul. 30th, 2013 02:35 am (UTC)
" asked me for a refund and that I have refused"

They state the commission they spoke about received their refund, that this person is claiming they refused to give one.
neolucky
Jul. 30th, 2013 06:55 am (UTC)
Uh...I'm confused on why you told me this? I read the post pretty thoroughly, I understand a refund was given. You posted something entirely not related to the question I asked about.
teekchan
Jul. 30th, 2013 04:39 pm (UTC)
They are two different people. The post is about person A who is claiming no refund was given, the bottom section is about person B. The poster things they couple possibly be the same person, but they refunded person B.

You comment made it seem as if you think they are 100% the same person, and that they are lying about refunding them. Thats how it reads anyways.
neolucky
Jul. 31st, 2013 12:08 am (UTC)
Ah, no, you definitely misread my post (or just misenterpreted it is all). I'll explain.

I assume the OP feels it's the same customer, hence why I treat it as such. Otherwise...why bring the bottom half up at all? I am not separating the two, as the OP themselves are making the insinuation it's the same customer. They say themselves "It sounds like", meaning they themselves suspect it's the same person. Why...would we not think the same, if the OP does?

I do not in any way think OP is lying about refunding them. The refund has nothing to do with my question. I hope that clarifies.

My question literally was: Was there communication in the 5 months it took the OP to contact the Person B with the refund or finished product. That's it, nothing about refunds, I am asking purely about the timeline of "person B".
houndofloki
Jul. 29th, 2013 03:06 am (UTC)
This sounds like something that will turn into a "he said, she said". Just make sure you have screenshots and evidence to back up your side of the story.
purpule
Jul. 29th, 2013 02:03 pm (UTC)
In relation to their threats to expose you on AB - If you have evidence that clearly contradicts her statements then you've nothing to worry about. Warnings that are put on here without clear evidence are quickly shot down - they're not just taken at face value of "this artist ripped me off" with nothing to back it up.

I'm curious though, though you don't necessarily have to say who you are, you can remain anonymous, would you consider saying who you are complete with evidence of the actions against you? Even if you made a journal addressing it, it would clear your name against the allegations.
teekchan
Jul. 30th, 2013 02:34 am (UTC)
A while ago I had someone come to me and attack me the same way, I actually posted an advice post about it too. They claimed I didn't do their commission and said I was someone I wasn't. I repeatedly asked for proof and they never showed it. They also threatened posting me here and spammed all my commenters in the journal I had posted slots in.

Eventually he just... vanished. I know it's not much help but it may be the same guy.
neolucky
Jul. 30th, 2013 06:48 am (UTC)
Please remember, these advice posts are just for advice: try to keep the person in question as anonymous as possible. Something as saying "he" or "she" could lead members to believe it's someone it's not.

Just a friendly reminder!
teekchan
Jul. 30th, 2013 04:46 pm (UTC)
The person I personally dealt with was male. At least he had it as such on his profile. I an referring to my dealing with him and that he may be the same person the OP dealt with. I am not saying the person the OP dealt with is male.

Also, where I am from male pronouns are also gender neutral. Not starting a discussion or anything, but when I say 'he/him' where I, personally, am from, it can be used for an object, unknown gender, and so on.
neolucky
Jul. 31st, 2013 12:12 am (UTC)
This is not the time, the place, nor the comm for this discussion. As such, I am freezing this, as it's very inappropriate.

Again, I'll state: Do not speculate about who the OP is talking about, including your experiences with said-hypothetical customer. This is an advice post, that's it. If they choose to make a beware, then you may do this, but not in an advice post.
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )

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