Enough with the "can you draw this for me" for free.

  • SVS OG

    Seriously. I put in the comments of the last FB post saying,

    "Mom says do one in her colors. So I do! Hope to make fabric out of these. I’m sure I’ll do more colors. I’m loving these wet flowers. But honestly, the only one who gets to make requests is my mom. Cause she’s my mom and I love her."

    and I still get someone (usually this same distant cousin of my Father-in-law) asking can I do a pink and purple one. Then she gets offended because I reply. "You're not my mother. Did you read the comment above? I still love you though."

    Of course I hurt her feelings. I could've been more careful in how I worded it. I realize that.

    Who actually likes telling people NO? Or we honestly don't have time to do something for you. My closest friends ask me for work, and they PAY me. Or wait a year for me to have time to do it. Or catch me in a creative mood and their subject matter is one that I want to do at the moment.

    Please stop making artist feel bad for asking for free stuff that we don't have time (or the desire) to make.

    End of rant. Sorry it isn't a more positive post. Please be kind to yourselves and don't commit to do things for the fear of telling someone "no."

  • I used to make greetings cards expecting to get a bit of extra money ,but got lots of orders from family and friends but no one ever bothered to pay me,I was sort of insulted.I have had people asking for a full size painting stating "it should be free you are my friend".Also gave away a lot of art to a relative which I no longer wanted(the art not the relative and found out later they sold the stuff.So you are right no more free art from me,I suggest you just say you are to busy at the minute.

  • SVS OG

    @DOTTYP I can't believe they sold your stuff. That is messed up! That one takes the cake right there.

  • The only free work I do are personal projects or as gifts for birthdays or weddings of friends/family as I am too lazy to buy a gift, then realise it would have been a lot less effort to have just bought the gift instead.....

  • My response now to the question "can you draw something for me?" is always "Yes. Here's my pricing guideline". Free is never an option that gets anywhere near the table.

    And if anyone asks anything along the lines of "can you do it for free?" it's always a hard, emphatic (but polite) "No." Not "I'm sorry, but no" or some other excuse, but just a good ol' "No".

    It's amazing how often I get paid now 🙂

    If someone tries to make you feel bad for saying no, then that's hinting at something rather nasty about their character.


    You're absolutely right. People that ask for free stuff can be jerks.

  • I think a lot of people who do this don't realize what they are really asking for in terms of time, effort, etc. And there's the saying, "It never hurts to ask!" I guess that's not always true!

    Yes, it's important to be up-front with people and be clear on your expectations.

    I would just let them know how much it would cost, or if there's something you'd be willing to trade/barter. If they are saying something like, "it should be free since we're friends" then if you're feeling snarky, ask them what they are going to give to you for free. Let them know how long it would take you to do what they are asking, and they should get the idea, and realize they are asking too much of you. If you don't have time or interest in the project, just let them know as kindly as possible.

    Whatever the situation, remember to thank them for the compliment of wanting your work!

  • @whitney-simms To be fair I doubt they got much money for the art, but I gave it for the childrens bedroom wall so it is just the principle really

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