This guide will cover the basics of using the A&C platform for beginners. There are two versions depending on whether you intend to sell your art services or if you are a buyer.
Edit the profile: After creating your account the first major step you should undertake is filling out your profile information. That is mostly public information that your potential customers will see, so keep that in mind. Under the Finances tab in the same settings, you should enter your PayPal address, where your payments will be sent to.
Create a commission slot: Having done that, it is time to create some commission slots. A "commission slot" is a specific, distinguishable type of work that you can do. Typically artists have different rates and turnaround times for sketches, complex paintings and other variations. Keep in mind that the price you enter when setting it up is the base price, and the final price can be set on a per-request basis, depending on a customer's request.
Price your work: Price your work: You should also be aware that you will receive 85% of the final price before fees. To learn more about the site fees click here.
Attach a sample: For the sample file, use a past work that you are proud of and that shows both your skill and the specifics of the given commission slot. You will be able to crop the thumbnail that shows up in search results once you're done with the creation.
Tag it: Another thing that you shouldn't go easy on are the tags. In our context, a "tag" is a synonym of "keyword". You are better off using generic, widely applicable terms. It is not a bad idea to reduplicate the title of a commission slot in the tag, in a more generic form.
Done!: Now that you have filled in all the important bits, hit "Create slot", and repeat the process for as many commission slots as you need.
Link it: From then on, it's waiting time. Customers will find your slots through A&C, through Google and other search engines, and from whatever you link them from. So as you see, linking to your Artists&Clients slots and profile might improve your chances substantially. While an important aspect of A&C is the discovery, another one is that it's a time- and hassle-saver, so there is nothing backwards about linking to it from your other websites.
You'll learn how it benefits you in a bit.
It begins: One sunny morning you receive an e-mail from us, and here it is - your first customer request. For clarity, throughout the user interface "customer requests" are lovingly dubbed "jobs". You can find a link to an overview of all your jobs in the respective menu in the top bar.
Open the job: Having clicked through to the job in question, you will see all the details: The commission slot that was requested, the default price, the status of the job, the customer's messages, and a few important control elements for you. For one, you can update the job price, the aforementioned final price, to whatever is appropriate before approving the job. You can also post replies to the customer and upload files. (More on files later.)
Approve it: Only after having negotiated the price and request with the customer and approving the job the number of taken slots on your slot page will update. After that moment new requests will be blocked off depending on your limit setting, so that you can concentrate on the things you're working on. It is only after the approval, too, that the customer can deposit the payment.
Get paid: Payments are withheld by the platform until a later stage of a job: Completion. It is a good rule of thumb to first begin work after the job is paid, otherwise you might work for nothing. If you are worried that a job might never be marked as completed by the client, there are a couple of mechanisms to solve the problem:
Watermarks: First of all, if you upload image files, you can tick the "watermark" checkbox so that a watermark would be placed on it automatically. All watermarked images automatically unlock as soon as the job completes.
Disputes: If that doesn't help and the job is not moving anywhere, you can cancel it. Cancelling an already paid job will trigger a refunding mechanism: Unless you approve or protest the refund, in 7 days time, the money will be returned to the client. Protesting the refund will alert the staff, and we will manually resolve the dispute.
But let's instead think about the average-case scenario: Everything goes fine, and the job completes. You receive 85% of the final price to your site balance and all watermarks unlock.
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