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Author Topic: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)  (Read 12623 times)

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selfie

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #40 on: June 04, 2013, 06:09:31 pm »
Vigo has a point, but that really only applies to "art for art's sake". Opt is talking about commissioned work based on a client's request and revised accordingly. It is not his fault if the brief was crappy.

I build signage and try to inform my clients why their idea won't work or won't look any good but constantly get "The customer is always right" attitude despite my decade or so of experience suggesting otherwise.

There is nothing more frustrating than someone that undervalues your experience and knowledge. Leading with a "what's your budget?" question generally saves me plenty of time.

mgb

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The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #41 on: June 04, 2013, 06:36:46 pm »
Vigo,
  You bring up a good point and I definitely agree about the costs up front, that's important.
  I however don't completely agree the art being worth $20 if that's what someone says its worth.
  There are many people who wanna low ball everything. In my experiences of communications systems in construction, these people are usually the ones that charge top dollar for their services while expecting everyone else to give them a break on price. Sometimes you have to sway a little or you lose the job and someone else swoops in for the low ball.
  But just because someone unrealistically thinks something is worth less, doesn't make it worth less.
   Maybe things are a little fuzzier with art, it's not like with manufacturing or construction services where there is somewhat of a standard of pricing.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 07:07:20 pm by mgb »

Le Chuck

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #42 on: June 04, 2013, 06:56:26 pm »
I don't really buy vigo's point of view.  There is a difference between good art and bad art.  There are compositional and stylistic elements that aren't all "in the eye of the beholder".  If I decided that an air conditioner is only worth $20 does that make it so?  No, because the market supports a higher cost.  The same argument can be made for anything.  I don't give a rip about gold, but it has a value and that value is market driven.  To tie that back into my initial statement art, due to the fact that there are quantifiable elements to it, has a market value.  Opt is always getting low balled and it gets on his nerves.  If a gold dealer always had guys telling him that his yellow metal was only worth $20 an ounce he'd get tired of it too, and he'd hold out because he knows the real market driven worth of what he has.  It's the same with good artists.  Pure gold is worth more than unrefined, ACs that cool are worth more than those that don't, and art that is fundamentally sound is worth more than art that isn't - regardless of what a casual party says. 

Vigo

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #43 on: June 04, 2013, 07:17:24 pm »
Vigo,
  You bring up a good point and I definitely agree about the costs up front, that's important.
  I however don't completely agree the art being worth $20 if that's what someone says its worth.

I have a hard time explaining it, but what I mean about art being worth $20 if that is what someone says it is, that is more of a frame of mind to keep as an artist. Meaning, if someone else doesn't see the value of your work, it is not that they just need to know better, it is just that they do not value that art like the artist does. Two similar paintings by two artists can vary in price from $10 to $10,000. I am not suggesting Opt sell his work for $20, more just that he will cope with these people more if he takes a different perspective and accepts that they are not the people who value his work at the level that makes it worth his time rather than get angry that all the work he is doing is not appreciated for what it is. I know these rants have to come out after a while, but from my experience, it is better to just take a dose of humility and not get offended when someone wants to pay $20 for what you feel would be $500 worth of art. I do agree completely about PITA customers in the art buying world, and it can be draining to deal with.

The problem when it comes to pricing art there is absolutely no standard. The are far more artists than demand for art, and they all range in every factor imaginable. Skill, methods used, education, medium, you name it. And Maximus, you are right about time being a measurable factor, but the problem is that a customers value of that time varies wildly. I know I could call up 3 friends who are all talented artists, and ask them what it would cost them to do a 24" painting of Rambo eating a fruit salad. I am pretty sure one friend would do it for $20 because he is bored and it sounds like a fun thing to paint, and another friend would be $500 because knows that is what he could sell it for on gallery, and another friend would do it for free but it would end up looking more like a painting of Pat Sajak riding a gazelle. Oh, and the guy who charges $500 would probably only spend a 20 minutes on the painting. He would cut out a picture a Rambo and paint a fruit salad in his hand, because that is his style.

Also, art labor can't be compared 1:1 with skilled labor like like an electrician or carpenter. Those roles have a set of standardized codes and laws they must adhere to for the work to qualify. They must also posses exact certifications to even do the job. An artist can do custom work, but if the commissioner of that art ends up not liking the artist's interpretation, they are out of a lot of money without being happy with the product they paid for.

All I can say is that being an artist is is tough. Working independently as an artist can be even harder because you have to fill the role of salesman and marketeer. Props to you guys who deal with that grind.  :cheers:

Vigo

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #44 on: June 04, 2013, 07:45:24 pm »
@ Le Chuck, Hopefully I clarified my point a little bit more in the above post. Because I don't think I am too much contrary to your view. I agree that there is good art and bad art, and Opt's work is definitely good. I'm guessing most of Opt's turnaways are not art dealers and did not PM him for a work of art, they PM'ed him because they had a job that cannot be simply photoshopped together. They had a cool idea for sideart, but either didn't want the same picture of Ryu as those "other" cabs or they couldn't find a good picture of Donky Kong violating ms. pac man on Google. It is a completely different perspective they are coming from, and were not expecting to be quoted for a custom art piece. I don't think it is intentional low balling at all.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 07:46:58 pm by Vigo »

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #45 on: June 04, 2013, 07:51:19 pm »
I wasn't trying to argue or belabor, just diverge.  Your clarification did help tho.  I spent a lot of college in lectures about that very topic.  Most of it is a wash tho - I was a terrible student during those years  ;)

Vigo

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #46 on: June 04, 2013, 08:03:56 pm »
No formal education on art here. Mostly learned from family. My college lectures were on....um....hotels and such. Nothing too intellectually stimulatin', can't remember much else. I remember a lecture on big-headed people. Oh, I can't forget the lectures on sex stuff. Stayed awake for those.

Ond

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #47 on: June 04, 2013, 08:34:09 pm »
For my part I don't take offence at some peoples ignorance of the effort involved in customized art, it's just slightly annoying.  Also, if someone can get a work done that they are satisfied with for nothing or very little, good luck to em.  I won't paint your Rambo eating a fruit salad for cheap.  In fact the price would be significantly much higher because I'd hate working on it the whole time I was doing it.  I guess I'll never make a living from it and that suits me just fine. 

To reiterate/paraphrase what was said by opt2not originally, when you pay for custom artwork you are paying for a level of technical and artistic proficiency and the skills ARE learned over a considerable period of time and effort.  This thread serves as an FAQ about the process and service that someone here is willing to offer.  Some examples with price ranges is not a bad idea,  whether someone openly advertises their prices is up to them I guess.

To flip the whole idea of what art is worth on it's head - both my parents painted and sold their art for years.  My dad spent many years perfecting his water color technique, both were members of artist societies that regular held exhibitions where pieces were sold.  Sometimes they sold offered pieces, sometimes they didn't.  When I asked them how they priced their work, mum just said "Oh that's just what I'm willing to take to part with it." 

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The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #48 on: June 04, 2013, 08:48:41 pm »

...Pat Sajak riding a gazelle...

So I know what I want for Father's Day.

I will also accept Tom Selleck on a giraffe.


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mgb

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The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #49 on: June 04, 2013, 09:05:48 pm »
Vigo,
   I see what you're saying and you explained it very well.

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #50 on: June 05, 2013, 07:23:17 am »

...Pat Sajak riding a gazelle...

So I know what I want for Father's Day.

I will also accept Tom Selleck on a giraffe.



Would you accept Jaleel White pointing at a hedgehog?    :lol

JDFan

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #51 on: June 05, 2013, 10:02:12 am »

...Pat Sajak riding a gazelle...

So I know what I want for Father's Day.

I will also accept Tom Selleck on a giraffe.


Sent from where ever I happen to be.


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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #52 on: June 05, 2013, 10:16:41 am »
I'd pay more for Pat Sajak riding a gazelle than Rambo eating a fruit salad.
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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #53 on: June 05, 2013, 12:12:13 pm »
How about Starbuck and Starbuck drinking Starbucks at Starbucks?


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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #54 on: June 05, 2013, 12:26:12 pm »
My brain hurts.



How about Starbuck and Starbuck drinking Starbucks at Starbucks?



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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #55 on: June 05, 2013, 12:52:32 pm »
How about Starbuck and Starbuck drinking Starbucks at Starbucks?



You forgot to include the obligatory Xzibit motivator.


Scott

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #56 on: June 05, 2013, 04:40:11 pm »
Ok this one's free but further revisions will be chargable

Vigo

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #57 on: June 05, 2013, 04:41:40 pm »
 :laugh2: It's like he doesn't know what to do with it.

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The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #58 on: June 05, 2013, 05:09:04 pm »



Well that's pretty awesome.



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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #59 on: June 05, 2013, 05:16:41 pm »
two things you can always count on when a rant thread pops up:

1.) it will denegrate into humor of some sort

Le Chuck

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The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #60 on: June 05, 2013, 05:45:48 pm »
two things you can always count on when a rant thread pops up:

1.) it will denegrate into humor of some sort

It's the Internet equivalent of the post coital cigarette

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #61 on: June 06, 2013, 07:41:29 am »
.....
« Last Edit: June 06, 2013, 09:11:43 am by jdbailey1206 »

opt2not

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #62 on: March 09, 2014, 10:18:39 pm »
I'm necro-bumping this up with another question in the first thread. Also because I've been receiving a bunch of inquires for commissions, and a few negative comments regarding some of the things I've mentioned earlier.

Its seems that people still don't understand the work involved... :(

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #63 on: March 10, 2014, 02:01:49 am »
send those people my way please. I could use the chump change $ lol :burgerking:

Vigo

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #64 on: March 10, 2014, 11:45:47 am »
Its seems that people still don't understand the work involved... :(

I am guessing those are the people who saw videos of an cartoonist drawing one of their characters in 30 seconds flat, not realizing that that person draws the same thing over and over again each day.

pbj

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #65 on: March 10, 2014, 11:55:15 am »
If it's too much work for too little money then.... stop doing it?

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opt2not

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #66 on: March 10, 2014, 12:45:12 pm »
If it's too much work for too little money then.... stop doing it?
I'm starting to think it might just come to that.

send those people my way please. I could use the chump change $ lol :burgerking:
Heh, will do.  :cheers:

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #67 on: March 10, 2014, 03:22:35 pm »
If it's too much work for too little money then.... stop doing it?

Its not that, me thinks. Its people wanting $500 worth of work and balking at the price tag, thinking it should only cost $50
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opt2not

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #68 on: March 10, 2014, 03:53:07 pm »
If it's too much work for too little money then.... stop doing it?

Its not that, me thinks. Its people wanting $500 worth of work and balking at the price tag, thinking it should only cost $50
It's exactly that.  Lots of people shoot for the moon, want a billion characters...or want a style that is unreasonable (like 3D art?? or photorealistic) then when I lay out the price for the effort/hours it takes they scoff at it thinking it's not worth it.  In those cases, I just say good-day and suggest they look elsewhere.

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #69 on: March 10, 2014, 04:12:57 pm »
So how much for a black light sensitive, lenticular, cubist picture of circa 1985 Tom Hanks wearing a bowl of Grape nuts on his head, while Aunt Bea Tattoos a picture of an Egg McMuffin on his chin?

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #70 on: March 10, 2014, 04:32:15 pm »
 :laugh2:  oh here we go...

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #71 on: March 10, 2014, 05:24:43 pm »
Well, I like your stuff and was certainly happy with what I've paid you in the past but this thread is kind of vexing.  Dealing with tire kickers is kind of par for the service industry course.  I've done catering, I've done "graphic arts" (t-shirts), and I've heard my share of BS about why they can't pay that invoice or how our competitors are doing twice as much for half the price.  Guess who's not in the service industry anymore?   :P

Everyone likes to complain, but this thread really feels like you wanted to publicly shame certain people without using their names, and skimming it looks you were successful in that endeavor as they recognized and outed themselves. 

Frankly, behavior like that is why I generally don't negotiate via private messages and I keep copies of any transaction related e-mails.  Sure, it might make for some frank "cash in hand" type posts on your threads, but at least we don't see "a well known member here keeps sending me insulting lowball offers and I don't like it" posts.

So, again, if you dislike the negotiations more than you like the money, then... don't do it.

 :cheers:




 
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opt2not

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #72 on: March 10, 2014, 06:18:45 pm »
You're absolutely correct on all counts.

But one thing you're missing is that I now point to this thread to potential 'clients' as a point of reference to filtering out the tire-kickers. When people contact me, I send them my standard Prices, Process and Policy write-up, and have recently been including a link to this thread. If I hear back from people after they've read through this lamentation, then I know that those people value the custom artwork I'd be creating for them, and it also indicates to me that they'll be easy to work with.

One thing I'd like to clarify is that while I like doing this art for members here, I don't hold this as a primary source of income. I do this on the side, I don't plan on expanding into a full-fledged service, and I don't plan on doing this as a full-time gig (nor could I, with the cost of living in Vancouver).  Even though the way I handle things are professional (I'm anal, and I like efficiency), my thread is stickied, and I come from a professional background, I mainly started offering this to people because I was tired of seeing clip-art slathered onto projects that have the potential to be so much more.

Doing custom art for people is something that I thought would be nice to help make their projects look even more awesome. That's how it started...then being able to get spending money for this hobby helps not only feed my obsession but also keeps the wife off my back.  I'm not going to get rich of this, that's for damn sure.
But I do get a sense of pride, a boost of morale and motivation from the recognition you guys give me. It's also great to see my art come to life with the projects here.

But I can walk away from this stuff, and probably will when I find it interferes too much with life -- which isn't that far off to tell you the truth. This was one of the reasons I got my artist buddy to help me out. With BitterP taking some of the commissions I can't get to, we've been able to keep this manageable.

As of today, I've got 3 major commissions to finish (2 BYOAC guys, 1 Arcade Otaku bloke), while BitterP is working on 2 big ones as well. There are about 4 people on the wait-list -- one of which I'm really considering because it would be the first time I've been asked to do custom pinball playfield art.  That is awesome not only because of the artistic angle, but also for the interaction of gameplay! But I'm hoping that both BitterP and I can finish our current ones by the end of summer, then evaluate what's next.

So yes, this is a Rant thread, as appropriately titled.
But for the record: None of the people that this was directed to has replied to this thread. 

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #73 on: March 10, 2014, 11:02:47 pm »
Bob Ross!   :laugh2: :laugh2: :laugh2:
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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #74 on: March 10, 2014, 11:38:18 pm »
<null>
« Last Edit: March 11, 2014, 06:45:23 am by Generic Eric »

SNAAKE

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #75 on: March 11, 2014, 11:00:31 pm »
who deleted the sam jackson ART  :laugh2:

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #76 on: March 11, 2014, 11:53:43 pm »
I think it had swearing in it, bypassing the profanity filter -- against forum rules!  :police:

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #77 on: March 12, 2014, 01:23:41 am »
IT WAS ART! :angry: :lol

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #78 on: March 12, 2014, 07:22:29 am »
who deleted the sam jackson ART  :laugh2:
http://i.imgur.com/FmqnQGU.jpg
I had second thoughts that maybe it was in poor taste.

I wasn't moderated, I took it down.  I'm an  :angel:


Altogether though, I feel a little bad for derailing OPs topic.  Maybe it would help to put a lead price out to cut out the riff raff.  Also, set on a product for a bit.   If you can do the work in an hour, but charge say...$200, someone might feel they are being taken advantage of.

That said, I've never tried to work with someone on custom art.  I don't know the process, I've only inferred based on what I read here.  Best wishes, just don't stop doing your Art.  It is really good.  I miss watching Frosticullus and Felsir churn out pieces.

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Re: The thing about custom artwork (FAQ & rant)
« Reply #79 on: March 13, 2014, 06:57:14 pm »
Altogether though, I feel a little bad for derailing OPs topic.  Maybe it would help to put a lead price out to cut out the riff raff.  Also, set on a product for a bit.   If you can do the work in an hour, but charge say...$200, someone might feel they are being taken advantage of.

What people need to keep in mind is they're not paying $200 for the hour worth of work.  They are paying $200 for the years of experience to be able to do the work in an hour.

  
 

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