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Business of Ferrets
Mar 2, 2008

Good to see that everything is back to normal.

Apropos, I think. (Artist draws ridiculous quotations from clients.)

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SVU Fan
Mar 5, 2008

I'm gay for Christopher Meloni


Hey everybody! I need some advice on how to go about adding a price to a vague job description.

I am a sculptor, and was commissioned to do some album artwork for an up and coming singer with a ton of big backing (they are independent, but managed by A&Rs from major global labels). I've got my rate and all of that and we're good on that front, but after having met, they want me to handle a ton of other stuff based around the release of the album as well.

Things like, consultations on creative ways to release different songs, visuals for the live tour, and other things that aren't really "projects", but rather, vague things that are sometimes small or big, but still take up my time/require work on my part.

Anybody ever been in a situation like this/know how I should go about adding a $ value to these different tasks?

Thanks!

kedo
Nov 27, 2007



SVU Fan posted:

Hey everybody! I need some advice on how to go about adding a price to a vague job description.

I am a sculptor, and was commissioned to do some album artwork for an up and coming singer with a ton of big backing (they are independent, but managed by A&Rs from major global labels). I've got my rate and all of that and we're good on that front, but after having met, they want me to handle a ton of other stuff based around the release of the album as well.

Things like, consultations on creative ways to release different songs, visuals for the live tour, and other things that aren't really "projects", but rather, vague things that are sometimes small or big, but still take up my time/require work on my part.

Anybody ever been in a situation like this/know how I should go about adding a $ value to these different tasks?

Thanks!

Phone posting so I can't go into great detail, but if I were you I'd estimate hours for as much of the work as possible and give a set price based on that scope of work with a addendum that states any additional work outside the scope will be done at your (increases) hourly rate.

E: point being, don't go down the dangerous road of trying to quoting the unquotable. I usually tell clients that I'm happy to work hourly and that if an unspecified future project is going to require more than 10 hours or so, I'll quote it for them when we can actually define it.

kedo fucked around with this message at 19:39 on Jun 4, 2017

SVU Fan
Mar 5, 2008

I'm gay for Christopher Meloni


kedo posted:

Phone posting so I can't go into great detail, but if I were you I'd estimate hours for as much of the work as possible and give a set price based on that scope of work with a addendum that states any additional work outside the scope will be done at your (increases) hourly rate.

E: point being, don't go down the dangerous road of trying to quoting the unquotable. I usually tell clients that I'm happy to work hourly and that if an unspecified future project is going to require more than 10 hours or so, I'll quote it for them when we can actually define it.

This was super helpful, thanks!

As a follow up to this, is there a document I can write up that protects my creative ideas/concepts? For example, let's say I discussed concepts for artwork/ways to release the album/tour info/etc., and they decide my rate is too high or they want to go a different direction or something. Is there a way I can protect myself from them going and using my ideas without me?

kedo
Nov 27, 2007



You've just defined a contract! A good contract should, A) protect your intellectual rights while also granting license/copyright to your client (can be written a lot of different ways depending on your/your client's needs), B) establishes a payment schedule and defines what happens if the client doesn't pay, and C) set expectations for a lot of other stuff.

NEVER WORK WITHOUT A CONTRACT!! If you don't have one with your current client, write one and send it to them and ask them to sign it. They might not if you're already working with them, but it's worth a shot.

If you google "boilerplate graphic design contract" and you'll get a lot of hits. AIGA also provides a really excellent document with an incredible amount of useful information w/r/t contracts. You should definitely download, save and read the whole thing. You can lift a lot of text from it to drop right into your own contract, but it will end up being a lot of text if you use all of it.

I personally have a very short contract, it all fits on one page. However I only work by referral and I therefore have pretty reliable clients so I don't need to have an incredibly complicated and protective contract. However if you're working for people you don't know/trust, yours should be rock solid.

SVU Fan posted:

For example, let's say I discussed concepts for artwork/ways to release the album/tour info/etc., and they decide my rate is too high or they want to go a different direction or something. Is there a way I can protect myself from them going and using my ideas without me?

This is something you can never really avoid entirely unless you want to try suing people. Clients come and go and I've found the best thing to do is to be free with your ideas. A client is more likely to continue working with your now and in the future if your relationship is built on mutual trust. If you're exited about an idea, tell them about it. They'll appreciate your sincerity.

What's more, in a culture so absolutely saturated with design, truly unique ideas are rare. If you try to lock them in and contractually oblige them to work with you just so they can get your precious ideas, they're not going to like it. I've seen this first hand and it's not pretty. At the end of the day remember that a client is really paying you for a service design and the ideas come free.

KittenofDoom
Apr 15, 2003

Me posting IRL


Someone saw an illustration I did and wants to make a limited-run shirt for their coffee shop (maybe 100 shirts). They've already agreed to use a contract, and I have some terms in mind already (retain ownership of artwork, limited run, royalties, contract re-negotiation for future use etc.), but I have no idea what to charge for it.

I'd have to make a vectorized version of the original artwork, but I could get that done in an afternoon. This is my first real contract work; how do I come up with a number to charge them?

SVU Fan
Mar 5, 2008

I'm gay for Christopher Meloni


KittenofDoom posted:

Someone saw an illustration I did and wants to make a limited-run shirt for their coffee shop (maybe 100 shirts). They've already agreed to use a contract, and I have some terms in mind already (retain ownership of artwork, limited run, royalties, contract re-negotiation for future use etc.), but I have no idea what to charge for it.

I'd have to make a vectorized version of the original artwork, but I could get that done in an afternoon. This is my first real contract work; how do I come up with a number to charge them?

easy formula: hours worked x hourly rate = project price. if it takes you 20 hours for the work, and you think you are worth $50/hr, you charge $1000.00 for the project. there are lots of variables obviously (if you have to buy a certain software for the project, if you have to travel at all for the work, etc), but that's generally a failproof way of starting out. licensing an already created piece is a whole different ballgame, but most of the same principles apply. congrats!

an skeleton
Apr 23, 2012

scowls @ u


I paid a random up-and-coming graphic designer guy on twitter $50 for a logo design and he is taking his sweet rear end time. (First sketches took about 3 days, wasn't a fan, after that he/she said new sketches would be coming soon; its been 8 days since then). Twitter is a particularly annoying format to correspond with people because you can see them retweeting and tweeting all sorts of nonsense all day and night, meanwhile I haven't even received a sketch I'm happy with. I get it; I only paid $50 but honestly I would've paid more if it meant a faster turnaround time. At the end of the day, if I get burned for $50 its not the end of the world, but does anyone have any advice for avoiding this type of situation in the future, or improving my current situation now? I would just ask for a refund but I'm afraid thats just gonna increase my chance of receiving lovely work and no refund.

edit: no contract, etc. so i/they dont have anything to fall back on/be held to in that regard

Slightly Absurd
Mar 22, 2004




an skeleton posted:

I paid a random up-and-coming graphic designer guy on twitter $50 for a logo design and he is taking his sweet rear end time. (First sketches took about 3 days, wasn't a fan, after that he/she said new sketches would be coming soon; its been 8 days since then). Twitter is a particularly annoying format to correspond with people because you can see them retweeting and tweeting all sorts of nonsense all day and night, meanwhile I haven't even received a sketch I'm happy with. I get it; I only paid $50 but honestly I would've paid more if it meant a faster turnaround time. At the end of the day, if I get burned for $50 its not the end of the world, but does anyone have any advice for avoiding this type of situation in the future, or improving my current situation now? I would just ask for a refund but I'm afraid thats just gonna increase my chance of receiving lovely work and no refund.

edit: no contract, etc. so i/they dont have anything to fall back on/be held to in that regard

More experienced artists will chime in, but if you've read even a few pages of this thread, you'll see that you got what you deserved and paid for.

One: $50 dollars is a laughably low rate for a logo. You're basically expecting this person to work for less than minimum wage. A more experienced artist could probably fart out a logo you'd like in about an hour, but they'd still charge you more, because you aren't just paying for their time, but for their experience. I'd be willing to whip something up for friends or family for that price, but not for a random twitter stranger.

Two: Get their contact info first. Duh.

Three: Create a contract you both can agree to beforehand. You can find these online pretty easily. They'll basically have you agree to deadlines, a fee upfront, a fee upon completion, limitations on revisions, etc.

Four: When creating something, you can usually choose two of three options: Get it done quickly, cheaply, or high quality. You went balls deep on cheaply, so you can't expect anything on the other two fronts. Sure, they may be doing poo poo on twitter instead of getting your logo done, but since you paid them so little, they'll pretty much just fit in your project whenever they feel is convenient.

Edit:
*removed*

Double edit:
I'm sorry I assumed the worst about you. CC is pretty artist-centric, and most posts like these are about how commissioners screw over the artist. I forgot it can be both ways, but gmc is right.

Slightly Absurd fucked around with this message at 12:14 on Jul 1, 2017

an skeleton
Apr 23, 2012

scowls @ u


I'm not gonna go dredge it up right now, but I think I gave them decent input and pointed to several examples of their work that I liked. Honestly my personal standards for this aren't super high, but that's another story. I agree $50 is ridiculously low. I actually mentioned higher numbers (i.e. a budget range) and they specifically asked me for $50. If paying them $100, or $150 meant that I got closer to an end product within 2 weeks I would've paid it.

tl;dr I would gladly pay more. for people out there who want X to get something done in a decent time, please just ask for X. I have no idea what random up-and-coming designer expects so when dude asked for $50 I wasn't going to spend time arguing.

gmc9987
Jul 25, 2007


The artist could have been (a lot) more professional by offering a contract, doing business exchanges through email or phone calls rather than DMs on twitter, etc., but you were similarly unprofessional by not searching out a competent artist who was also competent at running a business. The warning signs that this artist wasn't taking things so seriously were there to begin with, and you just sent them the full price of the logo beforehand without even getting anything in writing or any way to contact them outside of a social media website that will allow them to immediately block all contact from you with a button press. I hope you can understand how that might imply to someone else that you were not taking this totally seriously.

My advice for avoiding this situation in the future is to not just send $50 to some rando on twitter who can't even be bothered to set up a business email address, and to only start work after getting a contract signed.

mutata
Mar 1, 2003

You walk in with the Turnips, you leave with the Bells.



Contracts are for both parties. I always include pricing amounts, payment schedules, and delivery dates and expectations (ie what's actually being delivered and what isn't) in my contract. It sets expectations and ties my hands as the artist so that at worst, if I've screwed up and something's going wrong I have to amend the contract and contact you. If we can't come to an amendment agreement, then we fall back to the cancelation and refund terms as outlined in the contract. Also, if someone isn't willing or able to offer an agreement in writing like this then it's a good sign they'll be a bad artist to work with. Etc

Nessa
Dec 15, 2008



So I applied for a web developer job yesterday and got a rejection email today, but the company was interested in seeing my graphic design samples as it was on my resume and the company is really new, so they still need a logo and stuff.

The guy emailing me seemed to like my work, so now I'm expecting a phone call tomorrow to discuss things further.

I have been told before to raise my rates and I honestly don't know how much I should charge if I end up doing their branding. The freelance work I've done lately has all been for friends and family and not as big an undertaking as this. I'd probably prefer to charge for the project than an hourly rate. I want to be able to give them a number that's reasonable for someone without a lot of experience, but also not insultingly low for this kind of work.

Dr. Fishopolis
Aug 31, 2004

ROBOT

Nessa posted:

I have been told before to raise my rates and I honestly don't know how much I should charge if I end up doing their branding. The freelance work I've done lately has all been for friends and family and not as big an undertaking as this. I'd probably prefer to charge for the project than an hourly rate. I want to be able to give them a number that's reasonable for someone without a lot of experience, but also not insultingly low for this kind of work.

If you haven't done exactly this kind of project before, you really should charge hourly. You can provide an estimate based on the scope of the project, but you really don't want to be holding the bag when someone starts waffling on contract terms. Be incredibly specific about how many revisions and change orders are included, what assets you need from the client and at what milestones. Read the thread and make a contract.

As far as your hourly rate goes, you probably need to double it. Whatever it is right now, if people are telling you it's too low, it's too low. Your freelance rate includes 1. All the talent and experience you've built up to this point, 2. Not only your pay for the work itself, but also for the preproduction, emailing and negotiation to get the job in the first place, 3. Everything that would normally be covered by an employer, i.e. taxes, healthcare, legal, accounting, equipment and office space, and 4. What the market will bear.

If 1 through 3 don't add up to 4, you're in the wrong market. You can do price research for comparable designers in your area by simply emailing them and asking for quotes. Some might find this suggestion a bit dickish since you don't actually have a job for them, but I'm not aware of a site like Glassdoor for freelancers.

If your client balks, you can negotiate, but do so first by limiting the scope of the project. Don't just cut your rate quickly / arbitrarily, your client will rightly wonder why you were asking so much to begin with. If the response is "well I could just hire my cousin or some jerk on craigslist for half as much" my usual response is "OK, best of luck with that." They were never your client to begin with.

Nessa
Dec 15, 2008



Dr. Fishopolis posted:

If you haven't done exactly this kind of project before, you really should charge hourly. You can provide an estimate based on the scope of the project, but you really don't want to be holding the bag when someone starts waffling on contract terms. Be incredibly specific about how many revisions and change orders are included, what assets you need from the client and at what milestones. Read the thread and make a contract.

As far as your hourly rate goes, you probably need to double it. Whatever it is right now, if people are telling you it's too low, it's too low. Your freelance rate includes 1. All the talent and experience you've built up to this point, 2. Not only your pay for the work itself, but also for the preproduction, emailing and negotiation to get the job in the first place, 3. Everything that would normally be covered by an employer, i.e. taxes, healthcare, legal, accounting, equipment and office space, and 4. What the market will bear.

If 1 through 3 don't add up to 4, you're in the wrong market. You can do price research for comparable designers in your area by simply emailing them and asking for quotes. Some might find this suggestion a bit dickish since you don't actually have a job for them, but I'm not aware of a site like Glassdoor for freelancers.

If your client balks, you can negotiate, but do so first by limiting the scope of the project. Don't just cut your rate quickly / arbitrarily, your client will rightly wonder why you were asking so much to begin with. If the response is "well I could just hire my cousin or some jerk on craigslist for half as much" my usual response is "OK, best of luck with that." They were never your client to begin with.

Thanks!

After having a phone call with them, it seems like they are just looking for a logo and can't afford to get any branding done, but also need designs for presentations and stuff. I have done logos before, so that's not a problem.

I emailed them some questions about the specifics of the project, like how many concepts they'd like to see and the specifications of the other design work so that I could draw up a contract. I was thinking of estimating how much time that would take and setting that as a price, but with the exception that anything outside of the specified scope (more revisions, etc..) would then be charged at an hourly rate.

During the phone call I had with them, they didn't even want to know how much it would cost, just a breakdown of "how I work", so I kinda walked them through the process.

Sagebrush
Feb 26, 2012





Gravy Boat 2k

I was recently contacted by a book publisher who wants to use a piece of my artwork (already completed) as part of a book cover. They sent me a proposed layout and it's sort of a collage, with my piece taking up the entire rear cover of the jacket aside from the blurbs. The publisher is one of the Big Five and the author of the book has published multiple NYT bestsellers.

I have no idea how much to ask for in this case. I asked for them to send me the proposed terms/rights and their idea of an appropriate fee. What ballpark should I be looking at?

Defenestration
Aug 10, 2006

"It wasn't my fault that my first unconscious thought turned out to be-"
"Jesus, kid, what?"
"That something smelled delicious!"




Grimey Drawer

Sagebrush posted:

I was recently contacted by a book publisher who wants to use a piece of my artwork (already completed) as part of a book cover. They sent me a proposed layout and it's sort of a collage, with my piece taking up the entire rear cover of the jacket aside from the blurbs. The publisher is one of the Big Five and the author of the book has published multiple NYT bestsellers.

I have no idea how much to ask for in this case. I asked for them to send me the proposed terms/rights and their idea of an appropriate fee. What ballpark should I be looking at?
Absolute minimum $500 but you could get way more. PM me

Love Stole the Day
Nov 4, 2012
Please give me free quality professional advice so I can be a baby about it and insult you

Am working on a video game project that is all programmer art (i.e. cylinders and cubes everywhere) and is about 80% feature complete, programming-wise. It recently got its first Patreon supporter and every month I get a few people here and there asking to help with the project, art-wise. I tell them that I'll keep them in mind but I'm a broke loser irl so the real reason is that I couldn't afford to pay 3D artists anything close to a market rate anyway. I already know that the whole royalty/revenue sharing thing is a joke in both the art and programming communities, so I know not to even consider it as an option to begin with.

I figure that the best thing I could do is just find a way to scrap some money between the couch cushions to hire a 3D artist as some kind of tutor or consultant to help point me in the right direction and guide me toward being able to do all of the work I need on my own, but I feel really bad because I know that if I had the money to afford the artist's help then the project could at least have a releasable tech demo that I can parade around within a few months to gauge community response and then try to raise further Patreon funding with which to pay for better artists than my dumbass.

I'm posting this here on the off-chance that there might be some third option that I haven't considered here and also to share my predicament with this awful community.

gmc9987
Jul 25, 2007


Love Stole the Day posted:

Am working on a video game project that is all programmer art (i.e. cylinders and cubes everywhere) and is about 80% feature complete, programming-wise. It recently got its first Patreon supporter and every month I get a few people here and there asking to help with the project, art-wise. I tell them that I'll keep them in mind but I'm a broke loser irl so the real reason is that I couldn't afford to pay 3D artists anything close to a market rate anyway. I already know that the whole royalty/revenue sharing thing is a joke in both the art and programming communities, so I know not to even consider it as an option to begin with.

I figure that the best thing I could do is just find a way to scrap some money between the couch cushions to hire a 3D artist as some kind of tutor or consultant to help point me in the right direction and guide me toward being able to do all of the work I need on my own, but I feel really bad because I know that if I had the money to afford the artist's help then the project could at least have a releasable tech demo that I can parade around within a few months to gauge community response and then try to raise further Patreon funding with which to pay for better artists than my dumbass.

I'm posting this here on the off-chance that there might be some third option that I haven't considered here and also to share my predicament with this awful community.

Funding-wise, are you looking to fund this entirely out of pocket? Have you considered other options like kickstarter? If your goal is to eventually secure funding from another source, I'd consider doing exactly what you outlined in the second paragraph - secure a tiny bit of funding to make a very narrow but polished slice of the game, use that to get more money. Even getting someone to do a couple pieces of concept art (just the initial concept, not even anything that could end up in the game) could help quite a bit, when paired with a feature-complete demo.

Alternatively, see if you can build a simplistic graphical style into the gameplay - Thomas Was Alone is a great example of what I mean here. I know that's maybe not a realistic option depending on what type of game you're making, but really since you're determined to be a decent person who doesn't take advantage of artists (thank you for that, by the way) there's really not much else for options.

Nessa
Dec 15, 2008



Love Stole the Day posted:

Am working on a video game project that is all programmer art (i.e. cylinders and cubes everywhere) and is about 80% feature complete, programming-wise. It recently got its first Patreon supporter and every month I get a few people here and there asking to help with the project, art-wise. I tell them that I'll keep them in mind but I'm a broke loser irl so the real reason is that I couldn't afford to pay 3D artists anything close to a market rate anyway. I already know that the whole royalty/revenue sharing thing is a joke in both the art and programming communities, so I know not to even consider it as an option to begin with.

I figure that the best thing I could do is just find a way to scrap some money between the couch cushions to hire a 3D artist as some kind of tutor or consultant to help point me in the right direction and guide me toward being able to do all of the work I need on my own, but I feel really bad because I know that if I had the money to afford the artist's help then the project could at least have a releasable tech demo that I can parade around within a few months to gauge community response and then try to raise further Patreon funding with which to pay for better artists than my dumbass.

I'm posting this here on the off-chance that there might be some third option that I haven't considered here and also to share my predicament with this awful community.

I wouldn't think Patreon would be a good platform for video game funding. It seems to be a better platform for videos, webcomics or other projects that come out on a regular basis. An individual who is producing creative content that others would like to support by throwing them a few bucks every month would benefit from Patreon.

A larger, single project with a multi-person team and a long production schedule, like a movie or a video game seems like it would benefit more from Kickstarter. With Kickstarter, you can actually raise the funds to properly hire those artists that you need and take that into account for your funding.

I was involved in a Kickstarter to get the first issue of a comic produced. (I was the colourist.) That issue got funded, but it still wasn't enough for the project to get picked up by a comic company. After that, the rest of the mini series was Kickstarted and got full funding. I ended up getting paid more for the rest of the book, as we had the funding for it. Now I have physical copies of the book that I can sell at conventions.

Have you thought about doing a Kickstarter? Talk to the artists who have expressed interest about how long such a project might take so you can properly research how much funding you will need. You might need a 3D modeller, a concept artist, a graphic designer/UI designer, maybe even someone to function as an art director. I don't know the scale of your project though, so maybe you can handle most of that yourself.

If you can scrape together enough for a small tech demo, that can be used as "proof of concept" to attract Kickstarter supporters.

Nessa fucked around with this message at 16:06 on May 29, 2018

Love Stole the Day
Nov 4, 2012
Please give me free quality professional advice so I can be a baby about it and insult you

I really appreciate the advice. I suppose that Kickstarter could potentially be a big help, yeah. I've tended to discount its usefulness over the years, though, but I could be wrong.

I'm happy to know that the second option I described (finding a way to hire a tutor or consultant to guide me in doing all the work myself) actually seems like the best option under the circumstances. I was worried that I may have overlooked something obvious.

Here's the Patreon thing in case you guys were interested in looking at my dumb project: https://www.patreon.com/jfaw

Futaba Anzu
May 5, 2011

GROSS BOY



Nessa posted:

I wouldn't think Patreon would be a good platform for video game funding. It seems to be a better platform for videos, webcomics or other projects that come out on a regular basis. An individual who is producing creative content that others would like to support by throwing them a few bucks every month would benefit from Patreon.


The highest grossing patreon by a huge margin is for a game dev

Vermain
Sep 5, 2006




Apologies if this has been asked elsewhere in the thread.

I've finally gotten to the point where I'm confident enough to both put my work out for the general public to see and to start taking on simple commissions (portraits, character sketches, etc.). I'm not aiming to be hired by big name companies or anything; this is largely going to be individual, one-on-one work. My questions:
  • How should I effectively structure a standard contract? I'm assuming that, especially with one-on-one work, it's best to have gradual payments (e.g. $X for initial thumbnailing/adjustments, $Y for initial roughs, $Z for completed work, etc.). What's the typical breakdown of payments look like?
  • What's a good initial price point? This obviously changes based on skill level; I'm just looking for a decent ballpark.
  • How many revisions should I offer, and how should I word it to prevent myself from being worked to death with minor revisions?
  • For the final product, what's the best way to show it before revisions without potentially being cheated out of the final payment? Is it best to watermark it before payment is received, or simply shrink the size down?

gmc9987
Jul 25, 2007


Vermain posted:

  • How should I effectively structure a standard contract? I'm assuming that, especially with one-on-one work, it's best to have gradual payments (e.g. $X for initial thumbnailing/adjustments, $Y for initial roughs, $Z for completed work, etc.). What's the typical breakdown of payments look like?
  • What's a good initial price point? This obviously changes based on skill level; I'm just looking for a decent ballpark.
  • How many revisions should I offer, and how should I word it to prevent myself from being worked to death with minor revisions?
  • For the final product, what's the best way to show it before revisions without potentially being cheated out of the final payment? Is it best to watermark it before payment is received, or simply shrink the size down?

  1. I have some standard clauses in mine - kill clause (payment still due for completed work if client cancels at last minute), a clause detailing what rights get transferred, and a clause detailing how payment will work and what must be paid for to advance to the next stage, as well as the total cost of the contract. I also include a clause etailing how many revisions the client will get before they have to start paying more.
  2. This depends entirely on the project and how complicated it is. Since you're likely to be working with people who want to pay a flat rate rather than by the hour - I like to estimate how many hours the project will take me if the client uses the maximum amount of revisions, then multiply by an hourly rate to get a total. This rate is dependent on a lot of things - the market where you are currently located, cost of living, and how much experience you have. Generally though, I would start at $30 USD per hour (assuming you're in the US) and go up from there.
  3. I like to include 2 or 3 revisions at each stage of a project, depending on how complicated the project is. You prevent yourself from being worked to death by minor revisions by counting each revision as one of the ones included in the contract - after you reach the limit specified, you stop doing revisions until the customer pays you for more. I make it very clear at each step of the way that I will only accept one email from the client with revisions - a second email with more revisions will count as an additional set of revisions.
  4. Either method will work, although a watermark is more secure as some people don't have any problem using a low-res image for whatever purpose they had in mind. Either way, don't send the final product until money or proof of payment is received (I have a lot of international clients, and haven't had any problems with screenshots or scans of wire transfer requests)

Hope this helps, good luck!

BetterLekNextTime
Jul 22, 2008

It's all a matter of perspective...


Grimey Drawer

Hi goons!
I've been hanging out in Dorkroom but this is my first post in CC. If this is the wrong place to ask these questions, lemme know and I'll move my question to the right thread.

I'm launching a nature photography business, and I had my first festival booth last weekend. I did pretty well selling cards there so I don't think I'm total trash. I'll be getting an Etsy store together soon for online sales, but I also want to approach local brick and mortar merchants. That's where I want advice. I want to look like I know what I'm doing, but right now I have a lot of questions about what store owners expect when someone comes in off the street. I know I'll need a price list with wholesale and recommended retail prices. I've already got a county biz license and a state tax #.

1) Should I expect to have to negotiate wholesale prices, or will it be just a simple yes/no?

2) Are free sample products expected? If so, just for a few items (like one of each size card, for example) or for every item?

3) Display racks? Not really sure of the economics of this if I need to get them.
a) I definitely should expect to provide
b) I don't have to provide, but it might help my chances of getting picked up and gives me stronger branding opportunities
c) Stores will provide
d) Depends on the store

4) Do I need UPC codes/prices printed on the back of my cards, and how the heck do those work?

5) Probably a really dumb question, but do I charge sales tax on wholesale, and if so, that would be from my business address, not the store's address?

6) The places I'm looking at are mostly single store, local businesses (boutiques, garden centers, etc). I'm assuming there won't be fees for shelf space. Is this a reasonable assumption?

Any other advice would be welcome! Thanks!

Tart Kitty
Dec 17, 2016

Oh, well, that's all water under the bridge, as I always say. Water under the bridge!



Hey all, hoping I can get some advice.

I recently finished up an 18 page comic book that Id like to use as a proof-of-concept in a kickstarter campaign to get funding for a larger work. Despite being in the graphic design/print production field for nearly a decade, this is the first time Im setting out on a true independent venture.

My ideal Kickstarter goal would be to finance production on another issue or two, with the ultimate goal of printing physical copies and taking them to cons and trade shows to build and promote a brand. A couple of questions:

1. Does anybody have a recommendation for what financing amount to shoot for on an initial Kickstarter goal for something like this? I am worried about coming off as greedy or unreasonable in what I ask for.

2. Does anybody have any suggestions for how to go about printing something like this? A recommended printer or company that one of you might have personal experience with? Also any advice on cost would be appreciated as well.

I know this is a bit of a scattershot post, but Im sort of in a brave new world here, and Im still trying to figure out what the shape of it is.

lofi
Apr 2, 2018






I have no answers, but the making comics thread might.

Dr. Fishopolis
Aug 31, 2004

ROBOT

Fart City posted:

Hey all, hoping I can get some advice.

I recently finished up an 18 page comic book that Id like to use as a proof-of-concept in a kickstarter campaign to get funding for a larger work. Despite being in the graphic design/print production field for nearly a decade, this is the first time Im setting out on a true independent venture.

My ideal Kickstarter goal would be to finance production on another issue or two, with the ultimate goal of printing physical copies and taking them to cons and trade shows to build and promote a brand. A couple of questions:

1. Does anybody have a recommendation for what financing amount to shoot for on an initial Kickstarter goal for something like this? I am worried about coming off as greedy or unreasonable in what I ask for.

Well first of all don't worry about coming off as greedy or unreasonable. You can only raise money from the community you've built.

Start by making a list of everyone you know, right now, who you know for a fact would give you money to help you start your thing. Think about what each of those people could give, and tally it up. If you can do something cool that's a step along the way, then run that as your campaign, even if it's small. Consider it a "training wheels" campaign before you dive into the whole project.

I know way too many people who try and raise high 5 figures their first go and either don't make it or do make it and burn out anyway. Crowdfunding is hard work at first, but it gets easier once you have a plan and experience.

I don't have advice on your other question, but yeah maybe the comics thread.

lofi
Apr 2, 2018






From Making Comics OP:
https://ironcircus.com/shop/ebooks/...-pdf-ebook.html

gmc9987
Jul 25, 2007


Fart City posted:

Hey all, hoping I can get some advice.

I recently finished up an 18 page comic book that Id like to use as a proof-of-concept in a kickstarter campaign to get funding for a larger work. Despite being in the graphic design/print production field for nearly a decade, this is the first time Im setting out on a true independent venture.

My ideal Kickstarter goal would be to finance production on another issue or two, with the ultimate goal of printing physical copies and taking them to cons and trade shows to build and promote a brand. A couple of questions:

1. Does anybody have a recommendation for what financing amount to shoot for on an initial Kickstarter goal for something like this? I am worried about coming off as greedy or unreasonable in what I ask for.

2. Does anybody have any suggestions for how to go about printing something like this? A recommended printer or company that one of you might have personal experience with? Also any advice on cost would be appreciated as well.

I know this is a bit of a scattershot post, but Im sort of in a brave new world here, and Im still trying to figure out what the shape of it is.

Can't give any advice about running a kickstarter, but I can say that when I am looking to back one, I mainly look for:

  • Previous track record of delivering on promises (Not just previous kickstarters, other projects brought to completion count favorably as well.)
  • A transparent budget that indicates the poster has done their research and has a concrete goal and well-efined end product
  • Some preliminary work that indicates the project is well-planned (concept art, sample pages, etc.)
  • Donation tiers that make sense and are well-defined

In short I want to back someone who is likely to deliver on their promise, and who won't run into (avoidable) unexpected costs or delays during production.

Squidster
Oct 7, 2008

Life's just better with Ominous Gloves.


Greg Pak did a Kickstarter for a book on getting Kickstarters funded, and you can buy it on his site.

I've run a few comics Kickstarters, and wrote down our marketing strategy. We also posted the finances for one of our book Yonge At Heart , so you can get a sense of the costs involved in an anthology.

Get some print quotes on your book, and figure out how much it'd cost to ship it to the US, Canada and intl. If you can find a shipping broker, you can often get discounts on mailing large quantities of books. We use Chit Chats here in Canada, and it significantly drops mailing costs. Remember to calculate the cost of mailers in your estimates, as they can be expensive.

For printing, don't bother with a specialized printer like PrintNinja. Any traditional prose printer can publish your book, and they're often significantly cheaper. We use Marquis Books, and they've been reliable.

Your math should be something like:
(Your production time at $10/hr) + ( Printing Cost + Shipping Cost * $Number of Expected Pledges ) + 5% buffer.

Assuming it's an 18 page and took 4 hours per page, that'd be $720 + ( $4 Printing + $8 Shipping * 100 books) + 5% for a total of $2016. I often set my KS goals lower than the actual cost, though. People like to back a winner, so something that funds early is likely to see more total money. I use KS funds as seed money rather than a full ride, relying on conventions to make up the difference.

You can drop me a PM if you want someone to review the project. I'm here to help!

divabot
Jun 17, 2015

Assisted Living Dracula of Wikipedia

DO NOT BELIEVE THIS MAN'S LIE!
Statist shill spreading FUD!

HODL!!


I wrote a self-published book, and it was a hit! I'm now a respected expert in the field, go on telly, get paid to do talks, etc. Somewhat shocked to finally discover I'm good at something this far into middle age, but hey.

So there's a new (online) magazine in this field of interest, which I won't name in a public forum. They are paying writers, and paying well! The editor and I had a call and got on well and want to work together.

I got the contract, aaaaand it's an egregious land grab.

e.g., Para 7 says I own my copyright - but Para 8 claims perpetual, irrevocable, exclusive, licensable, subtransferable rights for them to do anything with said copyright, enumerating all manner of exclusive rights forever - "including all copyrights and other intellectual property rights therein". Para 9 does the same for derivative works. Para 17 says you pay any of their taxes related to the publication of this work (?!). Para 20 is a mandatory arbitration clause.

Also, you agree to keep this contract secret forever. Not surprising, I'd be ashamed too.

Also, the contract is presented as images only (not text) on a click-through site, hellosign.com.

The parent company is in the media industries, and I suspect someone there wrote an "exploit the naive aspiring movie star" contract and thought "that'll do."

So - I'm not sigining this thing in a pink fit. But they're offering enough money that I'd like to see if they're amenable to any form of reason.

Does anyone know of reasonable sample contracts for nonfiction writing for an online magazine? Basically that they have the right to keep it on their site indefinitely, but I do in fact own it and can reuse it without asking, after a reasonable exclusivity period.

Defenestration
Aug 10, 2006

"It wasn't my fault that my first unconscious thought turned out to be-"
"Jesus, kid, what?"
"That something smelled delicious!"




Grimey Drawer

I don't have one in hand but what you're looking for is to sell "first serial" rights

Dr. Fishopolis
Aug 31, 2004

ROBOT

divabot posted:

So - I'm not sigining this thing in a pink fit. But they're offering enough money that I'd like to see if they're amenable to any form of reason.

Nor should you, jesus christ. Mandatory arbitration should be (and increasingly is) illegal, not to mention all the other goodies.

First thing I would do is send them an email and let them know your lawyer is looking it over and you'll get back to them asap. If they shriek with outrage or try and rush you, walk away immediately. If not, hire a lawyer! It's really not hard, they probably won't expect it and it'll immediately cut through all the bullshit. The reasonable outcomes are:

- The lawyer tells you there's nothing to do about it, which they won't charge you for
- Your lawyer edits the contract and sends it back, and they sign it without really worrying about it (happens more often than you think.)
- They get their lawyer involved, a reasonable back-and-forth ensues and everyone walks away at least reasonably happy
- You can't come to an agreement and you're stuck with a lawyer bill for a few hundo.

Even in the worst case scenario, I think it's worth the money. Finding a good lawyer is something you really should do at this point anyway.

divabot
Jun 17, 2015

Assisted Living Dracula of Wikipedia

DO NOT BELIEVE THIS MAN'S LIE!
Statist shill spreading FUD!

HODL!!


yeah, I'm pretty sure the editor had no control over the content of this contract. But I did write him an email just now saying that this contract is unacceptable, detailing clause by clause why it's unacceptable - doing line-by-line takedowns of stupid documents is a lot of my writing - and ending with setting out what I know they need (first serial electronic rights and an exclusivity period) and what I need (not to sign over my copyrights), and to enumerate the limited rights they have actual uses for.

I expect his bosses to veto it and this to go nowhere. If I wanted to I could screw them good and hard just posting the contract, but I actually don't want to do that - the editor seems a good guy and I'm assured he is. (Also, nuking the bridge that hard could have fallout.) OTOH, I do know what sort of people he's working for, so they're very much my threat model.

divabot
Jun 17, 2015

Assisted Living Dracula of Wikipedia

DO NOT BELIEVE THIS MAN'S LIE!
Statist shill spreading FUD!

HODL!!


double-post UPDATE: the editor wrote back. He swears I'm the only freelancer who's uttered a peep of objection! (I literally predicted he'd say something like this.) He's responded, now this evening I work on responding. And of course on the actual piece, which I can use myself if we can't come to an agreement.

His argument for the rights grab is that they pay really well. $1000 for 1000 words is glossy magazine rates, after all. This is in fact an argument, and will get a few concessions from me.



In entirely coincidental news, a publication called Breaker have their official launch soon. They have posted a press release listing me as one of their freelance writers! Apparently they were REALLY keen to work with me!

This is slightly premature, in that the contract hasn't been signed yet. But there's just a few minor details to work out, I'm sure it'll likely be a happener. Great guys to work with, the greatest! Looking forward to it!

kedo
Nov 27, 2007



divabot posted:

double-post UPDATE: the editor wrote back. He swears I'm the only freelancer who's uttered a peep of objection! (I literally predicted he'd say something like this.) He's responded, now this evening I work on responding. And of course on the actual piece, which I can use myself if we can't come to an agreement.

His argument for the rights grab is that they pay really well. $1000 for 1000 words is glossy magazine rates, after all. This is in fact an argument, and will get a few concessions from me.

Yeesh. I'm not sure how many more red flags they could raise.

divabot
Jun 17, 2015

Assisted Living Dracula of Wikipedia

DO NOT BELIEVE THIS MAN'S LIE!
Statist shill spreading FUD!

HODL!!


kedo posted:

Yeesh. I'm not sure how many more red flags they could raise.

no poo poo. The press release also lists another freelancer - who is actually a famous person with a Wikipedia entry and stuff - and I happen to know they haven't signed their contract yet either. They hadn't read it either, until I sent a copy of mine ...

honestly, if they weren't offering dump trucks full of money ...

lofi
Apr 2, 2018






https://breakermag.com/are-smart-co...music-industry/

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Dr. Fishopolis
Aug 31, 2004

ROBOT

divabot posted:

honestly, if they weren't offering dump trucks full of money ...

I mean making a grand is better than not making a grand, until you get famous for some reason and they start using pull quotes with your name on them in their marketing materials like you endorse them, and you can't get them to stop because you can't sue them and the arbitration company they're forcing you to use won't return your calls.

Sure, the chances of them loving you over are relatively low, but why willingly sign a piece of paper that allows them to legally gently caress you over? I don't think that's worth any amount of money compared to the potential for costly aggravation down the road.

edit: i hope you're savoring the irony of the fact that the whole reason they hired you is because you're good at deconstructing scammy corporate poo poo wrapped up in buzzwords.

Dr. Fishopolis fucked around with this message at 01:14 on Sep 5, 2018

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