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Effort put into commission pieces v personal pieces

I've seen this with a lot of artists, where commission pieces seem do almost be done in halves when compared to a 'similar' piece that artist has done for themselves. I'm talking where pieces or the whole thing seem rushed; the linework is sloppy, anatomy is wonky and stiff, the colour palette seems thoughtless, et cetera.

There are quite a few artists I watch, where I can look at the thumbnails in my recent submissions and fairly accurately be able to tell if the piece was commissioned or something they did because they felt like it.


The stuff I do for myself almost never gets finished, or if it does, it's either bad or has taken several months of pottering before I finally get bored enough with it to call it done. An average cell-shaded commission for me generally takes about 3-4 hours from sketch to completion. Which doesn't sound like much, but that's about twice as long as it takes to do something for myself.

I don't buy commissions very often, and this is sort of the reason why. I'm sort of put off by the idea that I won't be getting that artist's best work.


Does this bother anyone else, or just me?
 

Fay V

Lost to this world
I put more effort into commissions than my personal works. the only personal stuff I seem to ever manage to finish is the little avatars I do, otherwise I just get bored and work on something else.
with commissions I will spend days on it making sure the details are all right.
 
Z

Zoetrope

Guest
I would almost say I put more effort into commissions, cause I really want them to look good. My personal projects are kind of rushed and I just want to see them done. I really do agonize over commissions and put a lot of effort into them.
 

Zydala

Kisses for everyone!
If I ever commission someone (which is not very often lol), I always look at their commissioned pieces to see what sort of quality I'd be getting and if it's worth the price. It doesn't bother me too much then if I get 'less than their best' because honestly, I think if I commissioned the 'best' from a lot of people, I'd be waiting those months from Zed that he says it takes for him to mess around with a piece to like it haha ;)~ ...That and, I dunno, there's plenty of ways that people work and the way that they feel about their own pieces; I think consistency in commissioned work is more important to me.
 

Thaily

Member
I've seen this with a lot of artists, where commission pieces seem do almost be done in halves when compared to a 'similar' piece that artist has done for themselves. I'm talking where pieces or the whole thing seem rushed; the linework is sloppy, anatomy is wonky and stiff, the colour palette seems thoughtless, et cetera.

Yet they use their "private" work that they drew for themselves and is better than their commissions as samples for their commissions.
It's false advertising, it's fraud, it's downright scummy and no-one should commission an artist who shows an obvious discrepancy between the quality of art they did for themselves and art they did for pay.
 

BRN

WTB Forum Mod Powers
I'm an avid commissioner and I've noticed that the artists that give you the best service - and not to mention put in the most effort on their end product - are the artists that really appreciate your attention. Developing artists, lesser-known folks, seem to really be eager to please, and it's quite heartening to receive practically a squeal of thanks after tipping.
 

Volkodav

Dad****er
I think it's because people are generally more comfortable spending a lot of time on art of their own characters then others.
 

SlushPuppy

A little bit daft.
I haven't read all the comments, so someone may have hit on this point-
I've noticed the very same thing.

I always try to put more effort into commissions. It may equal burnout if I'm not careful.
However things I have struggled with are thus:

buyers being too particular in what they want their picture to be. aka- they're killing my artist-sense. That's not to say I aught to go do what I want, what it is saying is that I have a higher developed sense of motion, light, space, dynamics, etc than a typical person. When someone boxes me into an uninspired composition they're going to get an uninspired picture. I struggle my way through those pictures and I know it shows.

Uninteresting subjects. Sometimes it happens... and then you just struggle. You struggle to be interested in drawing the same kind of character for the umpteenth time in the same pose etc. You WANT to be original, but it's just not happening that way.

burnout. it speaks for itself.

Aas for otherwise- I think artists simply not having a professional experience to teach them how to handle artist-buyer relationships impacts a lot of transactions and art. I could expand on this, but then I'd be O.T.
 
Z

Zoetrope

Guest
Uninteresting subjects. Sometimes it happens... and then you just struggle. You struggle to be interested in drawing the same kind of character for the umpteenth time in the same pose etc. You WANT to be original, but it's just not happening that way.

This is something I run into sometimes. It's hard to get a piece going if you're not fond of the subject.
 

Taralack

Hit 'em right between the eyes
Uninteresting subjects. Sometimes it happens... and then you just struggle. You struggle to be interested in drawing the same kind of character for the umpteenth time in the same pose etc. You WANT to be original, but it's just not happening that way.

I actually ran into this issue a few weeks ago. A really generic wolf character, I posed the character in such a way that had the head turned front on, angled slightly up - different from what I usually draw. But the commissioner wanted the usual three quarter view, saying that he commissioned me because of the way I draw heads... so yeah. Just a *flips table* moment.
 

Aaros

Member
All my best work has tended to be commissioned work, actually. Just because I tend to force myself to put in lots of extra hours making sure everything is right when I know someone is paying me for the art, and I want to do my best for them. When I'm working on art for myself, there's nothing at stake and I'm simply doing it do enjoy doing it, so there's not the extra incentive or motive to make sure it turns out as good as possible.
 

Saracide

Suede
I would rather have an artist tell me "look, i don't want to draw your character" or "I'm not interested/used to drawing rabbits" Than do it shittily regardless.
 

FireFeathers

Mr. Red Flag
I put my all into all finished pieces, commissioned or not. I try and give people more for thier money, and I tend to go a little nutty on my own images because i enjoy it. Better commissions mean better opportunity for more commissions :D
 

SlushPuppy

A little bit daft.
I would rather have an artist tell me "look, i don't want to draw your character" or "I'm not interested/used to drawing rabbits" Than do it shittily regardless.

But when drawing is your source of income rather than something you enjoy on the sides you have to take the boring with the exciting. The same goes for a lot of jobs, landscaping, architecture, tattooing, etc.
After a while most artists/designers will do it with the same level of expertise they can do their general work.

Maybe we should see when an artist gets a subject that excites them it should be viewed as superior work probably rather than the median.
 

Ley

Member
It's been said before (And put perfectly by SIX), but as I'm starting out I spend hours agonizing over a commission, even if it's just a simple thing. I spend a lot of time with just the *sketch*, and the lineart itself will take me two hours. I want to give people my best, because they're paying me to draw something for them.

With my personal stuff.. well I end up hating it. >:C
 

KatWarrior

New Member
It's hard to compare for me. Usually people commission me for something rather simple (sketch, inked), so next to something fully colored that I did for myself it'll look like it had less effort. But when held up to my other sketches, I think sketched commissions have about the same quality. Even when people do commission me for color, the order seldom had a background desired, and a lot of my personal things have backgorunds on them. Again, not a very good way to judge the amount of effort of personal vs paid.
 
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