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Submitted on
January 31, 2013


1,838 (1 today)
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Please take 6 minutes of your life to watch this ===>…

Seriously, too often do I get emails and notes regarding to doing work for a stranger or having a stranger asking permission to use my art, and often their compensation will either be non existent, or potential exposure.

And I know I've made a journal entry about this last year but still it never hurts to remind ourselves of what's happening with our industry.

I can't stress enough of how frustrating it is trying to explain to those who are doing work for free because they're desperate, or those looking for artists to work with but have zero idea how this whole infrastructure operates.

If you are a person seeking an artist/craftsman's time and service, be prepared to offer compensation just as you will be needing to pay after eating at a restaurant, or having a plumber coming into your home to fix your clogged pipes. And if you're new to seeking out the aid of an artist for your project. Be prepared to do the researches necessary on how to fund your goals. Google is an amazing tool in this day and age. And the art community is very small, and us artists are always on neighborhood watch against those who offer 'work'. You are paying for a service that you cannot do, so have some respect for those who spend years practicing and using that trade.

Artists, I'm just gonna bluntly put it out there. Don't be a dumb scrub and take work for free because they said they have no budget but is willing to work with you, and by chance in the future the project will get recognized and elevate your status to MegaPussyDestroyer. That will NEVER happen. Don't EVER take work for free. Like Steve said in the video, their time is precious and so is yours, and if they're not putting the effort to compensate you, what makes you think they'll take you seriously?...

For the exceptions that Stephen mentioned regarding to doing buddy projects on your own time is totally cool, but don't forget to treat your friends on the projects out once in a while, buy pizza, write a thank you card with a penis drawn on it, help them walk their turtles or something. Respect the bros and brodettes who work on pet projects with you, and that will oil the gears of friendship, not bullshitting you.

So keep it smart you art peeps out there, and always have a third eye when approaching 'enticing offers at opportunities of fame'. And if you're not totally sure on what to do, ask someone you know and trust in the industry.

  • Playing: inside
  • Drinking: Till I look handsome
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EmperorMumble Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013
MowenDesigns Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Watched it, totally agree. Thanks for sharing. ^_^
DeadSpaces Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Couldn't agree with you more! :) Never do free work, especially not in this day and age. We need to be compensated for our efforts. It always boggles my mind why people seem to think they shouldn't have to pay or offer compensation for an artist's time and effort.
ArtMagix Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
cuz a lot of people still associate art with preschool arts and craft macaroni shit, which they think is just having fun.
DeadSpaces Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
So very true.
Kageshinobi Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013
Props to this video and for fellow artists spread the word. It's been a major source of frustration for me starting up, running into those occasions where such offers were given, and for some of my fellows, getting into them.

I've learned my lesson pretty well, but now I feel a little hesitant than usual in how to approach other artists because I'm working on a non-profit project with a few others, and we'd like to garner more artist contributors in the future despite our current lack of funds. Though I'm glad that Stephan mentioned the exception of buddy projects or ones for good causes, which gives me some hope that it's not all bad terms for the rest of us who are not trying to take advantage of others in such a way. And, we remember to at least try to do thank you cards and foods and the like too, as you mentioned. :)
Robo-Shark Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Reblogged this on Tumblr a couple days ago, I love Stephen Silver and his work, talked with him a few times and he's very inspiring, both his artwork and his words here!

It is so true that artists are easily taken advantage of by people who want to get things for free. As I was saying on my Tumblr before, nobody asks engineers or architects to do their art for free. Cartoonists, concept artists, and others deserve pay and respect for their work like anyone else does. The more we work for companies and clients for free, the less of a chance we will have at having a career in what we love. I've learned firsthand how hard it is to compete against people who will work for peanuts (or nothing at all). They bring down everyone else by only further demonstrating to clients that we are not worth being paid for our time and our skills. We can't let them get away with that.

I recently saw some people complaining about how deviantART artists who offer commissions are "sell-outs" and that they're annoying and not "real" artists. Everybody wants to do something they love for their job, how is what we do any different? :\
ThatSummersGuy Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Amen. Watched this a day or two ago, and it's a must-see for any creative.
Conceptbloke Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Never work for free! Only exception I make if its for a close friend or possibly a charity cause and then only if time is available.
Anmaril Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Well said.
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