Commission Policy

 

Thank you for considering commissioning me! ​Before commissioning me, please read the following policies. These will all be re-iterated in our contract, but I hope it is helpful for you to understand the terms in advance of our work together.

Types of Commissions

I take on illustration commissions on a case-by-case basis. In general, I accept commissions for:
 

  • Personal illustrations/portraits (such as family portraits)

  • Illustrations to accompany articles

  • Promotional materials (such as posters or social media graphics)

  • Portraits of original characters

  • Short comics

  • Album art

  • Tattoo designs
     

I am open to new experiences! Please don't hesitate to ask for examples of these kinds of works if you cannot find them on my social media or portfolio.

What I *Don’t* Do

​I do not specialize in pet portraits and generally prefer not to take them.

I do not take commissions of a pornographic nature, though adult/sexual themes are not out of the question.

I also am not an expert in logo design or branding. I know people who are, though, and am happy to recommend them.

​I am generally hesitant to take on long-form comics projects. If you would like to collaborate on a graphic novel, know that I am very choosy with these kinds of projects!

Initial Consultation and Requirements

Please reach out to me by email for commission work. After your initial outreach, I prefer to schedule a phone conversation to discuss the requirements in detail. I find that a conversation helps us get on the same page much quicker than an email correspondence!

​Deliverables and their requirements will be negotiated during our initial conversation. This includes purpose/intended use, dimensions, deadlines, resolution, and general concepts.

An example of requirements:

I would like you to create a poster for a theater show I am producing. The show is called “HELLA RAD,” which is about psychedelics, queer joy, and friendship. I would like the poster to incorporate these themes, and ideally it would incorporate a bright and fun color palette. Our deadline for the poster is June 14th. The poster should be 11” x 17”, and we need .JPG and .TIFF files at printing quality (300dpi) in both RBG and CMYK.

In addition, I require any copy, reference materials, branding references, etc. upfront. For example, for a personal portrait, the ideal reference photos should be well-lit photos from multiple angles. If you have a poster that requires text, such as a theater or concert poster, you should have as much of the copy available before signing the contract. Of course, if there are changes along the way (such as the date of a concert being rescheduled), there’s some wiggle room. However, I do not make changes after the end of our contract, and major changes will extend our timeline.

The ideal deadline for reference materials is 3 business days after sending the first payment, but this is negotiable depending on your needs. No work will begin until I receive all of the necessary materials.

If there are changes to the scope or timeline of the project, we will work together to form a new written agreement.

Timeline

Upon establishing the deadline for the final product, I will provide a rough timeline of the work. This timeline will vary depending on the complexity of the project and is subject to change. This timeline assumes that you will respond to my inquiries or provide feedback within 2 business days. If there is a delay on your end in getting feedback and materials to me, the timeline will be extended.

I do not send materials on Fridays, as I do not respond to emails over the weekend and I would much rather be available for feedback and questions right after sending you the materials. I also do not work on holidays and, of course, cannot ship if the post office is closed!

Ideally, I will have a two week lead time for concepts and major revisions. I also generally can finish the final artwork on a two week timeline after the approval of the concept art. This, of course, will vary based on the complexity of the art work, as well as with the number of images. Anticipate at least a week longer on the delivery timeline per additional image for each stage of the process, including concepts and final work.

An example timeline for a 11” x 14” family portrait, painted in gouache:

These dates are based on November and December 2020, and account for weekends and holidays.

Mon, November 2 - Initial Consultation call

Tues, November 3 - I send a follow up email and contract

Wed, November 4 - Client sends the signed copy of the contract, 50% of the quoted price, and a Google Drive folder with reference photos

Wed, November 18 - I send a series of concept images as well as potential color palettes

Friday November 20 - Client provides feedback on design.

The timeline then varies depending on the nature of the feedback:

If the Client is happy with the designs:

Monday December 7 - I deliver a low-resolution image of the final artwork.

Tues, December 8 - Client sends final payment

Weds, December 9 - I send the high-resolution files of final artwork

Thurs, December 10 - I mail final artwork to Client, if necessary.

If the design needs minor revisions (minor composition, text placement/size, color changes, etc.):

Mon, November 30 - I provide updated versions of the designs.

Tues, December 1 - Client approves new design.

Tues, December 15 - I deliver a low-resolution image of the final artwork.

Wed, December 16 - Client sends final payment.

Thurs, December 17 - I send the high-resolution files of final artwork.

Mon, December 21 - I mail final artwork to Client, if necessary.

If the design needs major revisions (complete concept changes, adding new requirements, generally "going back to the drawing board"):

Wed, December 2 - I provide updated versions of the designs.

Fri, December 4- Client approves new design.

Mon, December 21  - I deliver a low-resolution image of the final artwork.

Tuesday, December 22 - Client sends final payment

Wed, December 23 - I send the high-resolution files of final artwork.

Tuesday, December 29 - I mail final artwork to Client, if necessary.

Communication and Feedback

I respond to emails Monday - Friday, usually within 1 - 2 business days. I check email 2x per day. If you catch me on social media instead of responding to your email, rest assured that I will check it and will get back to you within that time frame!

All of our business correspondence will take place over email. I do not respond to commission clients on social media or text.

During our work together, I will provide concept sketches within a reasonable interval for the project. We will have one cycle of feedback following this (you provide feedback for concept sketches, and I will provide one more set of concept sketches). I charge a flat rate of 15% of the quoted commission price for each additional cycle of feedback.

Payment and Pricing

I charge a sliding scale. Prices will vary depending on factors such as the terms of our agreement, scope of the work, and timeline. As such, my rates will change project-to-project. I will provide a quote during our initial conversation, and I no longer provide my hourly rate.

​I require 50% of our agreed price upfront. This first payment is due three business days after signing the contract. I will not begin working on your commission until this first payment is made.

​Final deliverables will not be sent until I am paid in full. There are no exceptions to this rule.

​This policy also applies to physical artwork that must be shipped. I will not ship until I receive payment in full, so plan accordingly.

In addition, I will charge extra for shipping, handling, and insurance, which will be invoiced with the final payment. If the piece is difficult to ship, such as a large canvas painting, please include this in your budget considerations.

I accept payments through Paypal, Venmo, and Cash app.

​If necessary, we can negotiate a payment plan. However, the above terms still apply: I will not start work until we reach the 50% of the projected quote, and I will not deliver the final artwork until payment has been completed.

​If the project is terminated for any reason, I will retain all past payments.

Shipping

If you would like the original painting/drawing of your commissioned piece, please let me know during our initial call (so I know to make your commission with traditional materials!). I will factor this into my quote for the cost of the artwork, and as mentioned above, will invoice you for the shipping, handling, and insurance costs alongside the final payment.

I have no control over USPS or any other shipping company, so once the artwork is in the mail it is completely out of my hands! I will, however, purchase the appropriate insurance for you when shipping the items.

Printing

If you intend to make prints of your commission, let me know during our initial call so I can include that consideration as I create the piece.

I am not a professional printer and thus cannot create physical copies of your commission, including but not limited to cards, prints, or posters. I recommend that you contact a printer or do some research ahead of time so we can make sure that the commission will fit the printer’s specs.

I recommend you seek out printing from a local business in your area :)

Unless agreed upon in writing, you may only make prints for personal use. You may not sell prints of my work, including the sale of concert posters, without my written permission.

Rights and Licensing

Unless stated otherwise in writing, I retain all rights to the work. This includes being able to share the work on my social media and portfolio, as well as the right to exhibit the work. If you would not like the work to be shared publicly, this must be included in our written agreement. I reserve the right to ask for additional compensation in the case where I am not allowed to share my work, as being able to display my art is a major part of my business.

​You may not reproduce or merchandise my artwork without an agreement in writing. Printing for personal use only is allowed (such as printing out your commission for holiday cards).

​In addition, unless otherwise agreed upon in writing, I must be credited for my work. This may include a link to my website or social media alongside the work when posted on social media or a website, being tagged in the social media picture, having my name and account mentioned in the description of a social media post, an explicit credit in printed material, and/or a small watermark on the completed artwork. The terms and placement of this credit can be negotiated at the beginning and end of the process.

​You may not claim my art as your own. This means that you may not credit yourself as the artist in a piece I have made, nor plagiarize my work, nor commission me and then turn in my artwork for a school assignment (in case you're wondering, yes, this has happened and yes, that person is probably going to hell).

General Guidelines

I know this is a lot of information to digest, but I hope providing this for you in advance of our work together will help us stay on the same page. I will also be providing this policy in our contract as well as the requisite summary in my follow up email!

I also want to provide some general guidelines/things to keep in mind/tips for commissioning me (or any artist!):

  • I am a real, human person with a day job and coursework on top of my freelance art work. Delivering artwork on a tight timeline is very difficult or sometimes impossible. In general, I try to be flexible, but consider two weeks between deliverables a baseline. For shorter timelines, I may charge you more.
     

  • I charge professional rates. This means that I will not be drawing your OC for $20 or working for “exposure” even if we’re friends or family. I never take unpaid work or requests. I encourage you to assume this of all artists! Art is hard work that requires a lot of time, training, and energy, and as an artist I insist that I be compensated appropriately.
     

  • I may not be able to accept your commission request. Please don’t take this personally! Usually, this is for your sake -- I don’t want to over-commit and not be able to provide you with my best, nor do I want to take on work that I am not interested in or are otherwise incapable of doing well.
     

  • I am a transgender person of color, and I will refuse to work with you or terminate our contract if I find out that your views, messaging, business, or behavior does not respect me, who I am, and my community. Absolutely no exceptions. If you have an issue with this policy, I suspect we will not enjoy working together.
     

  • Each round of feedback extends the timeline of deliverables. If you have a hard deadline, I would encourage you to reach out well in advance. For example, the safest time to reach out for a Christmas present would be mid-to-late October! Shorter timelines will reduce the number of possible feedback cycles. The minimum time I would recommend is one month in advance.
     

  • Prepare your materials and requirements in advance! This includes reference images, text copy, dimensions, whether the final deliverable  and resolution. Any delay or changes in requirements will affect our timeline.
     

  • I try to be as communicative as possible, and I expect that you will too. This means that, in general, my timelines assume that you will respond within 1 - 2 business days to answer my questions or provide feedback. If you are unable to do so, it is best if you let me know in advance, so we can set clear expectations at the beginning.
     

  • I do not make edits to work after the final work has been delivered. If you need me to make edits to a design after the end of our contract, we will draft a new contract for that work.
     

  • In general, I don’t love it when a client tells me that I have “complete creative freedom!” I genuinely believe that every client has some idea of what they want, and it’s much, much better if you come in with an idea, even if it’s a vague idea. I’ve found that “complete creative freedom” is rarely actually true, and usually it translates to “more rounds of feedback!” Of course, if you don’t have ideas up front, we can brainstorm some ideas at our initial conversation.
     

  • If you do not follow our agreed upon terms or otherwise violate these policies, I reserve the right to terminate our contract. I always communicate this in advance and would much rather talk things out and reset expectations instead of terminating a project, but, unfortunately, sometimes it is necessary.
     

​If you would like to commission me, please fill out the commission interest form or reach out by email with a description of your commission at althea@manyhandscreative.com

Please format the email subject or title of your project in the form as:
 

"Commission Request: <Name of Project> - <Your Full Name>"

 

This also tells me that you read this whole policy ;)
 

​I'm looking forward to working with you!