[identity profile] amatus-pavus.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] artists_beware
I'm looking for some advice on how to continue with an artist that hasn't done a sketch that was prepaid for months ago. I really blame myself for this as I did not contact the person regularly out of fear. While I can't find it in their rules now, at one point they had a bit saying they would "upset" if you bugged them or sent notes asking about if your art was done. Now, I have commissioned this person in the past and got a flat colored half-bodied couples piece for around the same price I paid for this sketch (The sketch is a full-bodied couples piece). The first one only took a month at most to be completed despite my admitted difficulty paying at that time. I've been waiting for this sketch for almost 8 months now.
I asked the Artist on June 17th, 2015 if they were still open, the artist said yes and that I might not get it for a few weeks as this person had a lot of other people before me. Being an artist, I understood this and give that she was so quick with the last one despite the same warning I went ahead and paid. Do to said clause in the artist rules I did not poke her about it and assumed she was working on it. I finally broke down and noted her on Jan 4, 2016 about it and she replied within an hour saying that she forgot about it but could not find my note with the order in it "I must have deleted it". I was polite about it, resent her all my references as she asked and even gave her permission to draw my OC when ever she liked as she apparently loved his decine. This is the last I have heard from her and she did not ever give me a timeline/deadline or even a hint of when she'd be able to do the piece.
Since then she has been active on DA, posting several personal pieces, a commission that was ordered after mine and a huge "sketch dump" (around 20-30 pieces in a single image, most are cleanly lined and half are flat colored). I have not sent her a note yet (March 5th, 2016) as I'm not sure how to handle this. She is an artist that I've admired for a long time, we started out in the same fandom circle and have done gift arts for each other many times before. I respect her and want to give her the benefit of the doubt, but I don't want this to drag on for year either. Her style is changing and I've already made a few changes to the oc so I'm worried about how this piece is going to turn out. As an artist I understand that sometimes you just don't want to work on orders and you want to maybe doodle some stuff of yours for a change. I've done that before, but the volume of work she's put out has be worried that I'm still not on the radar.
I definitely want to give her one more chance at the least, just some help on what to say or how to move forward would be great.

~Pavus

Update 1(3/11/16):
After making this post I discovered that I had missed a blog post by the artist explaining why she had been so slow with working on everything (despite evidence to the contrary stated above). I sent her a message inquiring about the "incident" (which happened new year's day) that she didn't tell me about via notes the last time we had talked; despite us being friends. She gave me an excuse and offered a refund with a guilt trip attached. I replied asking if there was some way we would work this out as I value the art more than the money.
It's been almost 4 days of silence from and artist. She isn't on DA or any of her media sites as far as I can tell despite having been very active in the days leading up to this.
I'm not sure what to do now. She seemed upset at me for even asking again though I was bending over backwards to be as polite and non-confrontational as possible through the whole thing. She apparently was already stressed out about all of her other still owed commissions and I fear I may have made it worse (I feel bad, but at the same time it's been 8 months for a sketch). I going to give her some space and I'll note her again in three weeks if I haven't heard anything back at that time. If by the grace of the Maker something happens before then I'll update this post. If you guys have further advice for me or would like more information, just let me know! Thank you for the help thus far.
~Pavus

Date: 2016-03-09 07:18 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] torotix.livejournal.com
You just need to ask again and be clear what response you want.
A good tactic is to slip in a specific deadline i e "I'd really like to see it done by the end of the month".
If they do get crappy at you for asking, which in my opinion is a bad business practise as well (I have actually been on the spot refunded for asking about the status of my commission politely), keep an open mind to taking a refund or asking for one, the artist clearly isn't excited to be working on it anyway so shouldnt have any issues refunding you.

Date: 2016-03-09 10:46 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sian tiley (from livejournal.com)
I don't trust artists who get hissy from people asking for updates every now and then, Id ask for an update and deadline 8 months is ridiculous to wait for a sketch.

Date: 2016-03-09 12:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] honeynuggets.livejournal.com
Echoing what's already been said here, I'd personally ask for a WIP and a solid deadline -- I think 1 month is fair. I'd avoid mentioning anything the artist can respond to defensively in the initial message, like them being active/possibly forgetting about your commission. Staying on-topic and being clear and concise in the initial message works best in my experience.

I'd send something like "Hey, it's been [x] months since I commissioned you, and [x] months since we last spoke regarding my commission, when I resent you my refs and info. I'd like to request a WIP image, and I'd also like to request a deadline that we can both agree on. I'd like to see the commission complete within [whatever timeframe you think is fair], but I'm happy to work with you to find a date that we can both agree on."

What I'd decide to do going forward would depend on their response. If I was unhappy with their response or they miss the deadline we agree upon, I'd personally request a refund.

Date: 2016-03-09 05:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] roxyfur.livejournal.com
I agree with what everyone else here said!

I also think it would be fair of you to request a refund instead of waiting. If they forgot about your piece once, and have done a fair amount of other commission work and personal work in between, then it wouldn't be a far cry to think they've forgotten it again. You've been more than patient, and followed their ridiculous rule in their TOS. I get not harassing an artist with several daily notes, but discouraging from even asking once? That's a red flag right there for me.

Date: 2016-03-09 07:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chaossal.livejournal.com
After waiting for so long it might be best to ask for a refund especially since you have already change somethings about your OC.
8 months for a sketch while they put out tons of other stuff means they don't want to do it.

Date: 2016-03-14 09:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] chaossal.livejournal.com
Also I wonder about this incident on new years...is the artist a German fur? As there was some incidents here on new years...

Date: 2016-03-12 12:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] aerospiritual.livejournal.com
reading the update- you have no reason to feel bad or guilty; you paid the artist for a service, regardless of your personal standing with them, and they failed to deliver while working on their own works- that's all on them and as their client, you're well within your right to inquire for progress or a refund.

I think that at this stage, taking the refund and cutting your losses is going to be the best course of action since it doesn't seem like the artist is all that compelled to put their queue ahead of their own personal projects.

Date: 2016-03-12 10:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fastbreak333.livejournal.com
It definitely sounds like the artist took way more than she can handle and even getting a hint at her owed commissions is causing her to feel extremely guilty. I'd say take the refund and move on; you may value the art over your money, but it's blatant that she doesn't feel the same way at all.

Date: 2016-03-12 01:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sian tiley (from livejournal.com)
I'd take the refund

Date: 2016-03-12 02:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] celestinaketzia.livejournal.com
Take the refund now that it's being offered and bail.

Date: 2016-03-12 09:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] enn shaw (from livejournal.com)
Take refund and move on.

Date: 2016-03-14 02:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rayesesshyfan.livejournal.com
I would take the refund.

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