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Information on Quoting for Contract Illustration Work


New Member
Hi there...
Recently got an ok to provide quotes to design starships and vehicles for an RPG game that could lead to other work. But I don't know how I should cost it out. I am going to be starting out with 3d pencil drawing rough designs then as the client puts more confidence in me I will move up to finished black and white/line work and colored work. If he needs interiors or larger planetary vista that remains to be seen.
Does anybody have any advice around quoting structures for roughs, finished line work b&w, rough color and finished color illustration? Let me know....


Always ill as hell
I seem to recall the Artist's Beware had a few threads on the subject on this type of commercial work and what to do about it. Maybe you can look over there?
Also, I think @zenmaldita might offer some information about this since they have worked something similar to this and maybe can give you advice there too?


always hungry
lmao @Fiorabeast hauling me out of me hermit hole to teach whippersnappers how to price!

@Tinkerspy Make a tiered price range that increase as you progress. Start at a sketch price and keep adding as you go. (example only: sketch price +$10 for lineart / +$20 for lineart and color...and so on). Make a TOS that your client will read, understand, and agree with. (a signed copy is awesome, but they can also PM you that they do agree. You must have this in writing in a format they cannot delete or alter.) The TOS must state that the client will pay for the work done at a certain stage. If you finished at the sketch, and they don't want you to continue, they must pay for the sketch. Or if you're a generous lil shit like me, I let the sketch phase slide for free. Your TOS is your TOS. You decide.

As for how much...that's completely up to you. What is worth your time and skill? I can't tell you how much you should charge. That is entirely upon you.


Well-Known Member
Most likely there's some kind of pro illustrator association in your country (in Sweden it is Svenska Tecknare); it's quite possible they'll have some sort of template contract and/or pricing suggestions available on their website. Provided this is a commercial venture, as opposed to a hobby coder wanting some art assets, I'd recommend against using fandom/hobbyist pricing.


Always ill as hell
@zenmaldita And I didn't come dragging you out empty-handed for you to spread your art-selling wisdom for nothing! ;) *holds up a mountain of your favorite snacks*

On topic:
Pretty much agree with what both Zen and @quoting_mungo said here, especially not using the fandom/hobbyist price since this IS professional work and (depending on your art skill level), you don't want to under-charge yourself. But, now that comes to the question on how much your client is willing to pay and not bulk out on you midway on your work? Is your client from a big name company, or an indie company?
Maybe do a search under what you specialize to get a rough estimate of how much you SHOULD be paid in this type of work, because I think artists that can handle drawing machinery are always in demand and it's good to research and find out yourself about this.


Well-Known Member
For a commercial venture you will want a contract not just a TOS, including terms about your copyright, which should be added to the price depending on what terms you and the client agree on.