28 December 2015

When A Return Client Asks for a Rush-Job Commission Over the Holidays...

...You say, "Yes, I am happy to take care of that for you", provided they meet the minimum fee of [quality work standards + resources and references + sacrificed holiday party time = fair charge total]. 
*Bullet points to follow for this situation, at the end

I have a client, one of my return clients (pause for personal hurrahs) who reached out to me on an unseasonably warm winter day between gigs for a quick favor; it's the simultaneously dreaded and appreciated "Could you get this done quickly???" offer of work, at an otherwise inopportune time.

Yes. That's the answer. But there are terms to be met for the 'yes' to be justified.

Yes, I want to work more, to try more challenges, to prove to my return client just why they are a return client, and be an all around rewarding freelance artist.
But no, not for a lack of fair payment, considering factors of materials, time constraints, holiday distractions, or the question of applicable, compatible content of the commission request, itself. These things must be considered and clearly communicated, as professionally as possible, mind.

Happily, my client herein is a wonderful creative professional herself and was indeed fair in her coming to terms with me on the project. Such clients should forever be treasured with respect, eager professionalism and helpful, cooperative methods.

The project was completely outside of my typical content interests or experience, however. It was to be a gift for a professional colleague in NYC, in the film industry, and it was to capture a shared idea that involved merging various famous, fictional serial killers with a teenage punk rock band line up gig. Old school and a bit creepy. But figurative work is certainly in my wheelhouse, and the creative freedom my client was interested in trusting me with was a welcome condition for my accepting the rush job.

In keeping with good taste for the sake of the client's concept privacy, as well as their colleague's, given certain factors that may develop things more, I'm keeping this fairly tight to the chest. But I will share a few sneak peeks at the process and the final result.
Or else this wouldn't be as fun, right?

One of the famous killers to be included in the concept composition was the well known Jason.

I worked quickly, efficiently at all times - or more so than usual, that is, as I am considered to be quite fast for a traditional artist.

Here's the figurative and characteristic contour layout of a ripped teen Jason, on the page with four other characters:

Really simple, I've just blocked the figure in and started pulling out the classic mask details before adding the washes of color.

And here's some of Jason for the final:

Instagram - Mairintaj_InMediasRes

And to be sure, having no extensive experience with any of the four fictional serial killer concepts my client chose for the piece, other than IT (Tim Curry clown), I went in up to the elbows in research on familiarizing myself with the four characters. It was a somewhat amusing and disturbing process.

Here's a shot at a teen version of Carrie's mother's legs in torn tights and shiny red leather boots:

Instagram - Mairintaj_InMediasRes

It was an odd, fun, quick little job!

*In summation:

1. Welcome back a return client with verbal smiles (it's cause for both of you to celebrate!)

2. Take on rush jobs if you can manage it to quality work standards within fair terms of your services. *(If not, help your return client to find a way to get their needs met by negotiations, or if necessary, a recommendation for a more suitable freelancer who will be able to fit the situation, and explain all of this patiently but firmly)

3. Show your return client just why they chose to be your return client by being a professional, empathetic, and problem-solving freelance dream (within reason of those fair terms)

4. Speak well of them and their professional dynamic in blog posts!

As always, I'm looking forward to more work with this client, keeping in touch throughout our mutually busy, expansive creative career journeys. It's always an unexpected experience.

Oh, yes, and wow - Have a Happy New Year - 2016 is just around the corner!
My, what a year...I'm glad I can see that one off with a good note.


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