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Commission tutorial by shingworks Commission tutorial by shingworks

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Over the past three years I've done loads of successful commissions, and have commissioned others successfully as well. I have never had an issue with my transactions because I did my research before I started, and asked others who were doing commissions themselves how they were managing. However, not everyone has the time to go and note everyone (or, if you're getting noted, you may not have time to answer inquiries constantly)! So for your perusal and reference, here are some helpful tips to help you get started with taking commissions on DA.

This tutorial is more for people who offer commissions, but I have a few words for those who take them as well:

- Do your research. Make sure you're getting art from a reliable artist!
- Art costs money. Don't haggle down, its insulting. Don't forget, you're also getting free advertising when they post it to their gallery (for example, who here doesn't know Audley's Castor ;3 )
- Don't be afraid to pimp the artists who did good work for you! Here is my list!
:iconkkitty23: :iconcbernie: :iconmattahan: :iconquestionstar: :iconthundercake: :iconyamiza: :iconzorgia:


Raraarrar you know the drill, feel free to comment w/ questions if you got em, thanks for reading etc

The pics in the icons are mostly from the LJ random image generator, they're (c) to the internet, I suppose XD Except for Kash, he's (c) Geico.

My other tutorials:
Pose tutorial
Expression tutorial
Hand tutorial
Foot tutorial
Ladies tutorial
Fellas tutorial
Face tutorial

Coloring Walkthrough
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Daily Deviation

Given 2011-02-08
Commission tutorial by `alexds1 The suggester states, "This Commission tutorial is a very useful and informative resource that could help everyone considering offering commissions. It's laid out very well too, in typical dA comment style, and once you have read it from the top all the way down to the bottom, there's a couple of hidden jokes waiting for you as well.:D" ( Suggested by namenotrequired and Featured by WDWParksGal )
:icon186lilly:
186lilly Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2017  Student General Artist
hey, can you look at some of my art and tell me how much you think it worth? I want to do commissions, but I'm not to confident in my art. (I actually have zero confidence for anything) It would be awesome if you could. It's alright if not. Please and thank you.
Reply
:iconjezabeththedemon:
JezabethTheDemon Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'd like to do commissions but I'm not a fantastic artist and I'm not great at drawing anything other than humans and backgrounds. But I think I'll do them anyway sometime soon. Probably will only ask for points though.
Reply
:iconmoustapha443:
moustapha443 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2017   Digital Artist
I think I can learn from this. Even though I like to draw for fun and not for profit.
Reply
:iconpinixtheraoguard:
PinixTheRaoGuard Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2017
Amazing! Thanks for doing this!
Reply
:icondiegoutetsuma:
Diegoutetsuma Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2017  Hobbyist Artist
Got it! Thanks!!
Reply
:iconbea-k:
Bea-K Featured By Owner Jan 10, 2017  Student Digital Artist
Thank you so much for this helpful tutorial!
Reply
:iconrandomrubidium:
RandomRubidium Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2016  Student General Artist
I would just like to know how you create them (as a post). I'm still trying to work this out
Reply
:iconpainted-panda:
Painted-Panda Featured By Owner Sep 15, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is going to help so much!
Reply
:iconnoobpinky:
noobpinky Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks! I'm going to put this to test once i finish my poster and get some commissions!  
:D (Big Grin) 
Reply
:icondreamy-sheepy:
Dreamy-Sheepy Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This may be a weird question but would it be too weird to only have one or two commission slots open at once? I get overwhelmed extremely easily and having more than that will likely make it so that I won't finish.
Reply
:iconshingworks:
shingworks Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Not at all, I usually only open as many as I know I have time/ energy to do a good job on. If you can't deliver then don't even bother opening them, you'll just give yourself a bad reputation.
Reply
:icondreamy-sheepy:
Dreamy-Sheepy Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you! This helps clear up some thoughts of mine :)
Reply
:iconchi-erri:
Chi-erri Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
woaaaa!! I need thisss QwQ I m new to Deviantart and this does help me a lottt!!! Thank you <3
Reply
:iconpanda930:
Panda930 Featured By Owner May 21, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
"Do you draw furries?!?"

I love it
Reply
:iconpamonk:
PaMonk Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2016  Professional Artist
Thanks for this great info and many Congrats on the DD.❤
Reply
:iconjaynatsketch:
JayNatSketch Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2016   Digital Artist
Thank you so much for this, it was really informative! I have a question; based on your experience, when would you say that you felt you were 'ready' as an artist to start offering commissions? I'm always trying to improve my art and so I'm never quite sure if I'm there yet, but I also think that commissions could be an opportunity to help challenge my skills. How would you start?
Reply
:iconkorrohinaru:
korrohinaru Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for posting this tutorial! It's really helpful and helped me to understand more about commissions, since I'm considering opening them.
Reply
:iconwhiteknightofchaos:
Whiteknightofchaos Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2016  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks this is helpful for just starting out.
Reply
:icontheanimenut:
theAnimeNut Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2016  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you so much! This was infinitely helpful! Nod 
Reply
:iconhaz1212:
haz1212 Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2016
Someone commissioned me and i finished the art but i dont have to points , How can this be ?
Reply
:icontori040403:
Tori040403 Featured By Owner Jan 12, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
this helped a lot thank you!
Reply
:iconlovesteverogers:
LOVESTEVEROGERS Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Hi, just curious. What if I don't have a PayPal (not allowed to use it) . And I collect points instead. If so, What can I do with the points?
Reply
:iconspiceprincess:
SpicePrincess Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2015  Student General Artist
Lots of people do point commissions.
You can buy a subscription to dA/core membership if you earn enough points, buy things in the deviantart store(prints of your favorite art, hoodies, plushies, other merch), and buy commissions from other artists offering art for points. 
Reply
:iconlovesteverogers:
LOVESTEVEROGERS Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
OK thanks!
Reply
:iconspiceprincess:
SpicePrincess Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2015  Student General Artist
Sure :3 
Good luck!
Reply
:iconcloverdeer:
Cloverdeer Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2015  Student
This is finally what I needed. I've never really started commissions since I haven't the faintest idea how to start but this should really help me in the long run! Thanks for posting this!~
Reply
:icongenachii:
Genachii Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I just don't know how to be known. ; v ;
Reply
:iconanimegirl1235:
AnimeGirl1235 Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Amazing!! Thanks for putting this up~
Reply
:iconnieengel:
NieEngel Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This tutorial was very helpful! Thank you!

But I have a question:
I don´t feel my art is worth more than one dollar/100 points. Would low prizes get me more clients or would they think if I offer for such low prizes I´m not even worth the money?

(BTW, sorry for my horrible english, it isn´t my first language)
Reply
:iconillegal-spyro-fan:
illegal-spyro-fan Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Often it sets off costumers when a person doesn't even themselves think their art is worth anything. Costumers might like your art, but be put off by the low low prices. 

What you choose to do is up to you, but just have some few questions in the back of your head when you're doing this "If I was the costumer and saw prices that low, would I buy?" "Is it worth buying from a person that doesn't even like their work themselves?" 

Customers/clients want quality over quantity (some few want quantity and uses artists that's still unsure, and milk them for art when they're still cheap, and try to keep them low on prices, and leave once they raise the prices, be careful of those), so in most cases high prices = Quality.
Some clients can also see that maybe your art is worth more than what you put on, so if you say your art is only worth 1$, they won't buy because they want to be able to give you what it's worth. 


I hope this make sense, English isn't my first either (:
Reply
:iconnieengel:
NieEngel Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well, I would buy low prizes.

It´s just, I want people with not many points to be able to buy it ._.

As I said I´ll wait until November and unless some miracle happens I´ll start with requests again until I feel comfortable with setting higher prizes~
Reply
:iconshingworks:
shingworks Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
If you don't think your art is worth a dollar, then it's a better idea not to sell it at all. Instead, spend your time practicing at art, or if you want to make art for other people, then just make gifts. If you were knitting a sweater that nobody would pay even a dollar for, or cooking food that nobody would want to eat, then maybe no point in selling it at all, if that makes sense. Once you are able to make products that people are interested in giving you money for, then you can sell, but not before that.
Reply
:iconnieengel:
NieEngel Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I don´t know ._.
I opened commisions and art trades and if I don´t get any until November I´m closing them again and practizing more~
But thank you for the advice!
Reply
:iconcatieskyeandkennedy:
CatieSkyeandKennedy Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2015  Student General Artist
Ok, one question: How do you actually set them up? I might have to borrow a laptop to do it, tbh, but I want to know, just in case. The rest if helpful! ^-^
Reply
:iconcynderandspyrorocks:
cynderandspyrorocks Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
i have a question.. umm if i'm done with the art piece do i just upload it on DA 
or should i semd them the file i was drawing on through their email etc ?? 

and also you use paypal right ? how does it work i mean how do they pay on it , someone told me i just give them my 
paypal email and they will do the rest... i just want to make sure 

(sorry if this doesn't make scene or if these are stupid questions ^^;
you see i want to start doing commissions but i never done it before. I did do Point commissions
but i kinda need money)

Great! tutorial btw! really helped!
Reply
:iconshingworks:
shingworks Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
You should work out how you want to do the file stuff with them ahead of time. Maybe they want a physical print (like, something you signed) or maybe they just want to print it on their end, which means you can give them the high resolution files. I would not send it to them through dA unless it was just a sketch, since for a finished piece they may want it as large and cool as they can get it (and that maybe shouldn't be shared with the general public who didn't pay for it).

I personally do use Paypal, but there are some alternatives nowadays like Square or whatever. I'd recommend you go to their website and read through the payment system, since it's pretty easy to figure out (but the actual site has illustrations and clear directions there).

Good luck!
Reply
:iconcynderandspyrorocks:
cynderandspyrorocks Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
oh i see , so i should like email them the original file
through their email... but i see so many artist post they're finish art commissions on DA
for everyone to see.. anyways i'll talk to my watchers about this and see what they would want. 

and okay i'll check it out!
Thank you!  
Reply
:iconshingworks:
shingworks Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Oh yeah, I'd put the final one up (as long as you both agreed on it), but make sure it is either a small resolution for web or has a watermark on it or something :)
Reply
:iconcynderandspyrorocks:
cynderandspyrorocks Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
okay! thank you for your help! U u U 
Reply
:icontwocupsofbancha:
twocupsofbancha Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks so much for sharing your experience with us!!! Doing business sure is scary, but I feel more relieved knowing that everybody eventually goes through the same struggles. I don't do comissions, but if the time ever comes, this will surely make the path easier. :) Thank you again!~
Reply
:iconmeowmeowgirlx:
Meowmeowgirlx Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for all the great advice! I'll probably try it sooner or later once i get the hang of drawing more often. i think ill take a few requests from my close friends first to get used to the feel... :D (Big Grin) 
Reply
:iconblackdragon314:
blackdragon314 Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2015  Student General Artist
Great advice on how to get started, many thanks. ^ ^
Reply
:iconfoxtailboyd:
FoxtailBoyd Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2015
I have a few questions on how the contact goes. Say I'm doing this on DA, then would they just send me a note asking for said commision. Everything looks a-ok and I'm ready to recieve payment and start. Do I give them my paypal? Or are they suppost to give me their paypal and I do one of those invoice things? And do I give them my email to send refs or is there a different, more discreet service that I need to obtain for this? Or would it be wise to make an alternate email just for commisions?
Reply
:iconshingworks:
shingworks Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
Up to you! You can try different things with different commissioners and see what you like best. Either way, make the decision yourself and clearly give instructions to the person commissioning you, so they don't get confused. Personally I do have a separate email for commissions and general business, but that's just because I like to partition my stuff that way..
Reply
:iconfoxtailboyd:
FoxtailBoyd Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2015
Well, thanks! Hopefully all goes well for me in the world of the commission. :)
Reply
:iconpanjaketaz:
panjaketaz Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2015
i think i will try
Reply
:iconsnowflakesofficial:
SnowflakesOfficial Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2015  Student Digital Artist
:iconzorgiaplz:
Reply
:iconlolke12:
lolke12 Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks this will be helpfull^^
Reply
:iconrufflemoon61562:
Rufflemoon61562 Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
i just dont know how to upload pictuers, i asked a few friends and they said find the grey boxes, i cant find them
Reply
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