The Story Behind this one is that it was a commission request where the client requested three items, batman, zombies and a cheetah... and thats it. I was to determine how they came together. Unfortunately the individual who ordered it dropped off of the face of the earth. This piece happened to be My first major lesson in the world of being a proffesional artist.
Rule #1 - Don't EVER take a commission without a deposit.
People are Dicks... despite what you may think, LOL. Not all people, but you wouldn't ask a stranger to hold your wallet.
When it comes to commissions I tend to take it on a case by case basis. I generally am a trusting person. So if I have done business with you a few times before, your golden in my book. However, if I dont know the individual then I require a deposit. How much is up to you, but typically I base it on resaleability and difficulty. For instance, despite the strageness of this piece, I was able to sell it fairly quickly, although I did have to drop the price much lower than my normal rate.
This is what I mean by resaleability and difficulty. Ask yourself some questions like:
- How easy would I be able to turn around and sell this piece?
- How popular is this character?
- How strange is this piece? like for instance is there a random cheetah in it?
- How Long would something like this take me?
- What would my up front costs be (IE. Supplies) with creating this piece?
- How Busy am I ? How full is my Commission List ?
Based on the answers to those questions you can determine a reasonable deposit amount.
A lot of the answers to these questions come with experience... so you basically have to know your craft & the market.
For instance, if someone asked me to draw a small bust sketch of a sexy Harley Quinn, well then no problem... maybe a small 10-30% Deposit. Enough to cover my supplies & a few minutes of my time.
What about a Aquaman Sketch? Well, not the most popular of characters, however there are collectors, so maybe a slightly larger deposit.
How about Plastic Man? You should probably get a fairly large deposit.
" I want you to draw my kids as the Fantastic Four, fighting Galactus (who will of course be me), and make my wife The Silver Surfer"
uuuhmmm Yeeeaahhh, Just go ahead and collect a full deposit.
Honestly, who in the hell is going to buy that, if that person dissappears?
Your going to end up sitting in the living room eating a hot pocket , staring at a framed painting of some dudes kids as the fantastic four. You would be staring at your TV, however the fit of rage that you flew into after finding out that this person bailed on you after spending 300-400$ worth of time & materials caused you to launch your computer through your flat screen. So now this $300 - $400 dollar loss has turned into thousands. Not to mention the fact that your wife has left you & took the kids because she was afraid for their safety due to your outburst. So now all you have is this F*#$%ing Painting. All of this could have been avoided if you had just taken a deposit....
I hope you have enjoyed reading this little pearl of wisdom & I also hope it saves you some headaches in the future. For those of you who read it, I thank you, everyone else can eat a peanut encrusted turd...
If you would like to see some non cheetah related artwork for sale, check out my SHOP!