Aside Posted on
Hi all! For those reading here that don’t follow any of my other social media accounts: exciting thing! I just started a new comic blog over at https://lipsumdrake.wordpress.com/
Since this is all part of the WordPress network, any accounts created here will also work over there for commenting purposes.I hope you enjoy it!
I’m going to move back to doing requests for no payment. Here’s why.
I started doing requests out of the sheer joy of making art for other people. This worked spectacularly well: it substantially improved my quality of work between May and October of this year. I can now genuinely state that I am satisfied with my art and that I intend to continue improving.
In October, I decided to turn these into donation-based commissions based loosely on how Tod does Icon Day: freebies with something nice if you tipped a bit extra. There isn’t much financial incentive here: I just wanted to see if freelancing were possible for me while recovering some of the costs of ink refills and other art supplies.
Across all of these, I made $165 (gross). In terms of recovering costs, I’d call that successful. However, this had the effect of substantially slowing down my artwork: the time commitment of doing business, added to my regular day job, commitments to my home, and schedule of producing art, took too many hours of my day, causing me to sleep at best six hours a night.
I managed this fairly well at the beginning. But as my sleep schedule ebbed further, I couldn’t really make this feasible a month or two later, frequently taking days off to recover. Since then, I’ve been struggling with what to do with the remainder of my art time, dreading the idea of continuing to do business even before considering changes in legal compliance and pending legislation like VAT MOSS.
For the past month, I’d been trying to figure out exactly what to do with my art. Then I saw this comic from Zen Pencils and realized that, perhaps, I’d been right at the start: the most important thing to me isn’t the money or the fame, but rather, the sheer joy of making something for another person, putting my all into the process of just making that art.
So for now, I’ve decided to stop taking payments for my artwork. This is something I have the luxury of doing: I have a sustainable, well-paying job that keeps me supplied beyond my needs, I can afford my material costs and the costs of my time, and I can take requests that are within my means. I will not begrudge people from continuing to send tips and donations my way, as they encourage me to keep making things for all of you. But I literally do not have enough hours in my current day to formally do business, and I need to act accordingly.
Through the end of this, I want to emphasize that this is a decision based solely on my personal needs. I want to encourage any artist that supports themselves through your trade to continue doing what you do, because you are awesome and we need more people like you to exist. I especially encourage people reading this post to keep supporting these people, because they struggle to inspire us all and bring worlds to life that we literally would not dream of if not for them.
Thank you for reading. Please note that this is not an art request thread, so please, do not request artwork here. I’ll be starting a separate thread on various social media when I begin taking requests again.
Love you all.
All of these are now in the mail en route to their purchasers. Thank you for commissioning me!
While I would normally post the completed photoset here, several of these have bonus ink illustrations that are a complete surprise! As such, I don’t want to spoil the magic for those of you who want the joy of opening these up for the very first time.
For those that would like to see the teaser illustrations for your card, or for those of you who commissioned me digitally, here they are:
- Sovrim: https://twitter.com/Goldkin/status/537949547507372032/photo/1
- Dragonheadthing: https://twitter.com/Goldkin/status/538572627715977217/photo/1
- Talarus: https://twitter.com/Goldkin/status/538936001821806592/photo/1
- Dav: https://twitter.com/Goldkin/status/539332240329555969/photo/1
- Nix’theeria: https://twitter.com/Goldkin/status/540123307907899392/photo/1
Thank you so much for commissioning me again. Have a joyous and safe holiday season!
This is a fairly short batch! Here’s the queue order:
I’ll be starting in on these tomorrow and working on them over the Thanksgiving holiday. Thank you for commissioning me!
Now that the second batch of images are up, onward to batch number 3!
This one will be a little different. This time I’m doing holiday cards! Everyone replying will get a holiday-themed Copic illustration. If you tip, I will send you a physical copy. Joy!
Please read this full post. It won’t take too much of your time, promise!
What you’ll get
- Each person replying to this thread will receive one holiday-themed Copic portrait illustration entirely for free, distributed digitally.
- Everyone who tips $15 or more will receive their copy in the mail, along with a short seasonal greeting and an inked sketch! (The postal notebooks I am buying for these are approximately $6 before tax and take about an hour to prepare, so the margin isn’t too large here!)
Here is an example of what you will get if you tip! Page 2 will be a prose greeting that isn’t shown here.
- Requests will be open until Monday at 9AM United States Pacific Standard Time. (If I get completely flooded, there is a soft cap of 100 slots in this current batch, though I may take more.)
- Requests will be completed at a rate of approximately one a day, posted to social media at the time of their completion. I will also create a post here when the batch is done. Resolution on these is capped at the high-resolution settings for Twitter, but I can provide high dpi images upon request.
- Illustrations can be of the same or different characters (up to a maximum of two, if you tip).
- Props for your character (including silly hats, Hawaiian shirts, monocles, and whatnot) are allowed. Please give a brief description of what you’d like drawn if you request these! References for these props are also welcome.
- Your illustrations will be constrained to four pages of a Moleskine Postal notebook. I will try to mail all of these before the Christmas holiday (December 25th).
- Commissions will be completed in pseudorandom order. This is to allow anyone a shot at an early commission, without putting strain on people in non-US timezones. I use https://www.random.org/lists/ as my randomizer.
- To reduce confusion, please request only your own characters. If you want a batch of interlinked illustrations (say, to signify a relationship), please have each person ask for their own character separately. These may be batched together within reason.
- By requesting here, you assert that you claim ownership over the characters and references that you send me for purposes of making art for you. Please only request illustrations of characters you own. DO NOT request illustrations of copyrighted works or other things that could get me in trouble.
- Please provide reference images for your illustrations. As before, these can be the same or different for each illustration that I do for you.
- All illustrations and themes must be PG. Please keep your references PG as well, because I might want to stream these or show them informally to other people. If you want PG13 or adult work, ask me privately, and it’ll go onto a separate commission queue.
- All illustrations I create here will be posted publicly to social media, primarily on my account on Twitter. The personal greetings I write for you will be private only to you. If you’re not comfortable with this, please contact me privately for a separate commission.
- Limit one slot per person. You are on the honor system here. Please do not sock puppet or use alternate accounts to request multiple slots, as these will deprive other people of timely access to their requests. If you’d like more than one illustration, please contact me privately here or on Twitter so I can schedule a commission just for you!
- I will be maintaining a separate account just for these commissions. If I become aware that I cannot complete your request for any reason, your tip will be refunded in full. I will even pay the PayPal transfer fees.
- All public images I release here will be covered generally under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. However, the recipients of each request may do whatever they please with their own illustrations. Just please give credit where credit is due. 🙂
- These illustrations will be produced on a best-effort basis. Refunds after a work is completed are not guaranteed, but may be provided if you are not completely satisfied. Please read PayPal’s terms of service and summary of changes, including those effective November 18th, for a summary of your rights if you choose to tip and aren’t completely satisfied.
- I may allow small changes to illustrations for you within one week of their completion. Please let me know. But, do understand that I also have a day job that may prevent these changes from being immediate. Do keep them reasonable!
- DO NOT POST YOUR MAILING ADDRESS TO THIS THREAD. I will contact you separately for mailing information.
Please reply to this post, filling out the following fields in your response:
- What character or characters would you like me to draw for you?
- What expressions would you like these characters to have in my illustration for you?
- What references do you have for these characters? (Please provide at least one image reference per character. Text references are difficult to get right!)
- These illustrations will be holiday themed. Do you have a particular favorite end-of-year holiday I should mention in your card?
- Did you tip? (Letting me know who you are when you tip is usually fine. If you forgot to do so, just reply with the last four digits of the invoice ID or send it to me privately.)
- What name would you like to be credited as? (This will be used when I post your illustration to social media.)
- If you’re receiving a physical copy, how should I contact you for your mailing address? Post something that I can use to drop you a line! (Preferrably, in a form that will confound bots, such as itisdark at that Gmail thingy.)
If you desire to tip, here’s the shiny button! (It’s still a generic PayPal donation link for now. I’ll sort that out eventually.)
And now that all of that’s out of the way…
Reply forth with the art that you’d like!
Phew, these are back a bit further than I wanted to post them because of a busy month. Here are all of the scans!
Thank you again for commissioning me! Next will be Holiday Cards! I’ll be opening that within the next hour or so.