First off, sorry I haven’ t posted in ages. July was hecka busy.
Secondly, let’s talk about a new site I found called ArtCorgi (homepage here).
ArtCorgi is a network of artists who all do commissioned artwork. They have a wide variety of styles to choose from, with several different filters you can use to find the right style for you. The site administrators (handlers? agents?) handle all the middle man-ing so the artists can focus on what they do best: make the art itself. These guys popped up on my newsfeed a while back, and being a fan of both art and corgis, I decided to check them out. On a whim, I decided to like them, and on a further whim commented on a post they had regarding grandiose portraits. They asked what kind of fancy portrait one would get if they could, and, having come up with my own concept for this idea some five years ago, I decided to throw it out there. I won’t bother much with the details, as you’ll see both the draft and final below, but apparently my idea was so rad that Founder and COO Simone Collins decided to give me a discount just to make sure it got made. She sent me a few different artists as suggestions, and I decided to go with Clay Graham (see his work here), the artist that I felt best fit the work I wanted to get. We worked out pricing and usage, Simone being exceedingly friendly, prompt and professional throughout, and then I sat back to watch my portrait come to life.
The work itself was prompt as well, and I got my draft within a matter of days (you only get one round of revisions, which may sound harsh from a client stand point, but is actually incredibly gracious and respectful to artists and their time, something which almost never happens on freelancing websites). Based on my description, it looked like this:
Pretty friggin sweet, no? I sent back my revisions, which initially involved a rather extensive change of story to make it a bit more obvious whose side each of the different animals were on (the tiger and wolf are on my side, shark and bear, not so much), Simone spoke to Clay on my behalf, and he, having already started inking it, asked if it was alright to keep the original composition with a few changes to address the issues I had mentioned. Given how much I love the shark and wolf, I decided to stick with it (also because for him, that really would have sucked), giving a bit more direction on how to solve the problem, and shortly after, I got the final, both as a regular image and in an elongated Facebook cover photo size.
So yeah, pretty dang sweet, and while I’m not a huge fan of purple and after the fact realized that I was missing my quiver and bow and broadsword strapped across the back (I missed it in my revisions and didn’t say any colors I didn’t want, so I didn’t bother to mention either later), I am happy with the result. I mean, how could you not be? Look at me punching that shark. I’m saving kittens from a burning building and that wolf. That. Wolf. I think I like it more and more every time I see it, and it’s the exceedingly epic portrait that I wanted to get going into this.
Also, they’re going to feature my story and an interview with me on their blog, so, you know, that’s awesome.
On a more review-ish side of Artcorgi itself, I wanted to point out a few things that really struck me as great.
First of all, these guys really are very prompt and professional. I never had to wait more than a day for any response to any email and they really did seem to take an interest in my story. Simone was always cheery and friendly in her emails and seemed genuinely excited about working with me. She has shown interest in my work as an author and my life in general and has just been so incredibly sweet.
Secondly, so far as I can tell from just being a client, these guys actually do take care of their artists. I’ve tried a bit of freelancing myself through an online venue, and the thing I most got out of the experience is that most freelancing sites do way more to protect the clients than they do to protect the workers. ArtCorgi does both, and that’s something I really respect. In fact, as someone who wouldn’t normally have sprung for their offer on the portrait, it literally was the game changer between getting this done or not. I really wanted to support something that honors artists and their time while still making sure the client gets what they need, and while I don’t know for sure what it’s like to work as an artist there, visual art not being my strong point, from what I’ve seen on their website (specifically here), they do take steps to make sure that their artists maintain a lot of control, specifically in regards to work pace and work load, two things that as an artist can totally be a killer.
Anyway, I just wanted to write this post as a sort of thank you and shout out to a new website I really like. You should definitely check them out if you need some art made, and support a website that supports great art, great ideas and the relationships in between.