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What do you look for in an artist?

xdontyoufakeit

Kaiju Master & aspiring artist
Hey everyone! I know this question looks too broad or confusing but I wonder what goes on the mind of people who follow and/or buy from artists.
Of course there are some obvious reasons like those who reply fast and are kind. What are those things that make you follow an artist? The way they communicate? The kind or style of their of art? The fact that they are in multiple social media platforms? Why do you decide to commission from an artist? Why do you come back to a certain artist? Why do you try new ones? What some are red flags for you? Which kind of negative experiences have you had?

It's not like I am pointing at someone or anything, I just want to learn from your answers and improve, change, refine. I have been building my artistic profile for the last year or so and I would love to hear what you have to say.

Also, you are welcome to mention your fav artists! Thanks everyone
 

TyraWadman

The Brutally Honest Man-Child
What are those things that make you follow an artist?

It's usually quality or style. I'm super selective when it comes to watching people, so there's typically a reason for it.

Why do you decide to commission from an artist? Why do you come back to a certain artist?

I commission people that I respect and feel confident that they can do my character justice, if not for the outright support of the artist. One in particular seems to have a knack for tiny details which I struggle with. Their walk of life also seems to differ significantly from mine, so where I fail to conceive an idea, they seem to have a fix for it. I can see the dedication and time they put into their pieces but unfortunately they seem to have a bad habit of underselling themselves.

I suppose the short answer is kind of straightforward. XD I have a job that needs to be done and they're the one that can do it right (for me)!

What some are red flags for you?

Inconsistency. If an artist can't prove to me that they are capable of drawing without being so dependent or limited to certain poses, (or you know, making it look like they actually drew everything that's in their gallery) then I don't even consider commissioning them.

Which kind of negative experiences have you had?

I think the most I've had is that the artist didn't know how to handle my commission, but instead of telling me they changed their mind and refunding me, they pitched me a second idea as if it were going to be better/awesome this way. It was not. And it was drawn with less detail than what I'd initially paid for. I simply took the loss in silence. The art I got wasn't terrible, just underwhelming and not what I expected. They just don't have the style I'm looking for, in the end.
 

TemetNosce88

So long, good luck, goodbye.
I follow any artist that I like something about their art and want to see more of it in the future.

I choose artists to buy from based on a number of factors. A big one is style; there are lots of artists who are very talented but I just don't particularly care for how they draw. Instead I find people whose art style is something I enjoy. I also look for people who have, or do, draw anthro horses. They can be a little tricky and I don't know if I want to pay someone who typically only draws cats or dogs (for instance) to take a crack at horses.

Something I like to see in a gallery is a lot of completed commissions or other drawings made for someone else. If they're YCHs, I like to see variety in the poses and subject matter and not just someone who colors in bases (again, nothing wrong with that. That's all my skills allowed for earlier this year).

I haven't yet gotten more than 1 set of commissions from the same artist (one did 2 at a time, another did 3) but I wouldn't hesitate to commission them again in the future. I just haven't done so, partly because I just want some variety in styles of my characters.

A red flag for me would be a lot of YCHs and no completed work. Smells like a scam to me.

So far, all of my experiences commissioning artists have been very positive. They've all been communicative, easy to work with, and completed the art on schedule or within a reasonable time frame. I have one commission being worked on currently, so hopefully that all holds true, but I have every indication that it will.
 

Minerva_Minx

Succumbing to her own psychosis
Reasons to follow:
1) I want to remember them for later potential commission.
2) Follow for raffle entry
3) Interesting concept to explore later

Just because I follow someone doesn't mean anything. Commissioning, on the other hand:
1) Impressive to me. Style and flavor counts, but some artists do the art for commissions sake. I look at their style, tone, and comments. I'm not looking for stick figure capabilities - I can do that. But some artists want a challenge or someone to commission that one piece they want to do but can't for some reason. I want that attempt.
2) presentation. Van Gogh was amazing and simplistic, but his style and presentation show how he felt and wanted to be seen. Yes, some artists have that. Not many, but a few.
3) Conceptualized creativity. I have an idea I want to see and they have a vision to present. When the idea is just vague enough and the vision just on point enough, you'll have an awesome piece every time. As stated above, different poses, ideas, risks. Showing yoi can take a risk is a positive, not a negative, and showing a less than stellar piece is likewise a positive. It shows the range that the artist can do and that lets me know what I can reasonably expect if it doesn't work out. I have a piece by one artist do a piece as an attempt and it was less than impressive. 18 months later, i commissioned them again and they hit out of the park.

Red flags:
1) New accounts. Not always bad, but out of the box awesome? Suspicious.
2) YCH clones. Or like above, incomplete YCH's. It's ok to have several YCH incomplete with the final product. The same over and over is essentially the artist saying they are a one trick pony. If that trick isn't the trick I need, I'll pass.
3) Self-hype. Word of mouth ALWAYS beats self-hype.
 

Punji

Vaskebjørn
Why I follow an artist is generally pretty simple, personally. I have to like their content in both style and subject matter and they have to actually post something every once in a while. I follow artists as an easy way to just see all the nice content they produce without having to cycle through a couple hundred different pages or hope to catch their works on other sites. There have been artists with styles I really enjoyed, but their galleries were almost exclusively content I just didn't particular enjoy and ultimately have passed on it.

I'm pretty new the whole commissioning game myself, having only commissioned one artist for one work before with a small set from the same artist in the works right now. For commissions, I'm generally more interested in style and how that style will mesh with the content I'm interested in commissioning. Some things in my mind are inherently better represented by certain styles, and I'm happy to pursue artists with styles that match my ideas. I chose to ask the same artist for more commissions because they were very polite and did an excellence job on my first piece, and because the works are very similar in nature, (stickers of my character), I'd prefer a consistent style. Ultimately I went to the same artist twice because I was happy with every step and result of the commission.

For me, I'd say a big red flag is a lack of personal content in a gallery. If it's only stuff they got paid to make with little to no flare or passion I'd be much less likely to ask them for a commission compared to a baseline. Another concern for me is too many YCHs, or YCHs that are too similar. There are a lot of artists out there that spam them constantly and some who seem to be just colouring the same template over and over. While there's nothing really wrong with either of these things, it does disinterest me from a customer standpoint. It almost seems like the artist doesn't enjoy what they do or simply don't really care much. Maybe they're just playing it too safe. Just not for me, I'd like to hire an artist who enjoys what they do and allow their passions to show in their work.
 

xdontyoufakeit

Kaiju Master & aspiring artist
Their walk of life also seems to differ significantly from mine, so where I fail to conceive an idea, they seem to have a fix for it

This is a really great way to put it. I have been thinking about this sentence from the moment I read it! I think that one as a customer looks for the person who can supply for a specific need.

I think the most I've had is that the artist didn't know how to handle my commission, but instead of telling me they changed their mind and refunding me, they pitched me a second idea as if it were going to be better/awesome this way. It was not.

I think that we as artists should understand that if a specific request can't be fulfilled, we have to accept that. I'm wondering if what happened to you had to do with the artists' fear of losing your bussiness. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but I think that you (or any customer) would want to have a great commission piece and the artist should try to make that happen. I don't know if I was clear lol

Thanks for your responses!!
 

xdontyoufakeit

Kaiju Master & aspiring artist
I also look for people who have, or do, draw anthro horses. They can be a little tricky and I don't know if I want to pay someone who typically only draws cats or dogs (for instance) to take a crack at horses.
This is important. I mean, I get that some artists want to draw everything they can but at the same time, one can tell where they are 'forcing' themselves and where they are natural or rather, comfortable.

Something I like to see in a gallery is a lot of completed commissions or other drawings made for someone else.

I agree on this one. I see some galleries that all they have are YCH and no art, yet they apparently have done commissions. It feels kinda weird and strange.

Thank you for your input!
 

xdontyoufakeit

Kaiju Master & aspiring artist
I want to remember them for later potential commission.
This is something I wondered but I know I see this is very real!

But some artists want a challenge or someone to commission that one piece they want to do but can't for some reason. I want that attempt.
I like this bit. Personally, I like to challenge myself and want everyone else to see that. Try different styles, coloring, poses. I think that as an artist we have to show this 'hunger' for improving ourselves.

3) Self-hype. Word of mouth ALWAYS beats self-hype.
Super true! I think that also the way you communicate with everyone else adds to that. Quick responses, thankful, respectful. I know that those may sound obvious, but I've met artists who are a bit harsh or cold to the people they've worked for.

For me, I'd say a big red flag is a lack of personal content in a gallery. If it's only stuff they got paid to make with little to no flare or passion I'd be much less likely to ask them for a commission compared to a baseline.

This is something I was thinking about for some time. If I post other, non-furry art to my FA gallery, would anyone be interested in it? My watchers responded positively to this, fortunately. But yeah, after all we are people with different interests!
 

MischievousPooka

Artist, cosplayer, and of course a furry
This is something I was thinking about for some time. If I post other, non-furry art to my FA gallery, would anyone be interested in it? My watchers responded positively to this, fortunately. But yeah, after all we are people with different interests!
Having non-furry art in FA gallery might get a few people interested in commissioning you. I have posted some art that have humans in it and people find me at cons will sometimes ask me about drawing humans interacting with their fursona since they know I can draw both humans and furries well. I don't post all my human related art but I post some in-between posting furry related art so people see what I can do.
 

xdontyoufakeit

Kaiju Master & aspiring artist
Having non-furry art in FA gallery might get a few people interested in commissioning you. I have posted some art that have humans in it and people find me at cons will sometimes ask me about drawing humans interacting with their fursona since they know I can draw both humans and furries well. I don't post all my human related art but I post some in-between posting furry related art so people see what I can do.
I have never thought about that! It's true, people can see that you have range as well. Thanks for this input and the watch in FA :D
 
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