AEROCATURES™ Commissions
Frequently Asked Questions

If you're interested in commissioning an original Aerocature(tm), the following information will give you a quick overview of the process involved.

 How much will an original Aerocature(tm) cost?

This is the first thing that everyone wants to know, but the answer is not simple. The cost of the finished art will ultimately depend on the size, complexity, and urgency. We'll look at each of these factors separately. To start with, however, let's assume that there is no immediate critical deadline.

Sizes are typically 9"x12", 11"x14", 14"x17", and 14"x22". The art will either be black & white or color, rendered in ink and Prismacolor® pencil. Shipping charges, local taxes, and insurance will be in addition to the cost of creating the art.

Costs associated with research time, printing or producing prints, T-shirts, or other products from the original art, and reproduction rights, commercial license fees, royalties or copyright ownership will also be in addition to the cost of the original art. More about these issues below.

 How is complexity involved?

The complexity of the illustration will influence the cost. While there is no simple formula to evaluate a proposed Aerocature(tm)'s complexity, here are some of the considerations that matter:

a. How many aircraft or other vehicles are to be depicted? The more aircraft, the more time is involved to plan and execute the drawing. Landing gear, ordnance, flight or ground crew, and support equipment also affect complexity.

b. Is the caricature of a specific person involved? Getting people right is a bit trickier than working with aircraft. At least 4 or 5 representative candid photos will be needed along with background information on hobbies, quirks, and personality. More back and forth communication is usually involved as well.

c. How hard is it to tell the story? Creating the image of an aircraft flying through the air is generally a straightforward process. However, often times the story being told involves a complicated scenario or an abstract concept. In such cases, more time will be needed to for both my client and me to develop an image that both looks and "feels" right.

 What if research is required?

Many times, the person requesting the Aerocature(tm) wants to portray a particular aircraft or specific event, with associated markings, ordnance, or surroundings. The more information that you can provide, the better. If you cannot provide the appropriate reference information, additional charges for significant research time may be added to the costs described in the table above.

 How are payments made?

Should you decide to pursue commissioning an original Aerocature(tm), the following payment schedule applies:

a. One-third of the total amount agreed to is to be paid "up front" as a retainer. This payment demonstrates serious intent and enables me to put you "in the queue" along with my other clients.

b. One-third of the total amount is to be paid on your approval of the final sketch(es).

c. The balance of the payment is due upon delivery of the finished illustration, prints, or other products.

d. If the commission involves producing prints or shirts, the up-front fee may be at least 50% to provide the printer with working capital for materials and pre-press preparation.

e. To keep costs realistic, final shipping costs may be billed after the illustration and/or prints are delivered.

 How do I make sure the finished illustration is what I want?

I derive great satisfaction from knowing that a commissioned Aerocature(tm) conveys the idea that my client expects. While the basic premise may be easy to define, how the final illustration will look may not be obvious at first. There may be several different ways to get a particular idea across. Many times, the best solutions don't happen immediately. Therefore, I will try to keep you closely involved in the development of your Aerocature(tm). This includes asking many questions as I develop the initial sketches and faxing, e-mailing, or otherwise sending you copies of the work in progress for your evaluation.

For an example of how the interactive creation process works, please visit our commission evolution page.

 How long will the creation process take?

This a difficult question to answer, since there are several important factors involved:

 What about "rush" orders?

"Rush" commissions will cost more. When does a commission become "rushed"? Generally 3 months is enough lead-time to schedule a commission. One month of lead-time is definitely a rush job and will cost more. One week of lead-time is pretty much out of the question, unless an already existing Aerocature(tm) will serve your needs. Rush deadlines will also involve higher shipping charges.

It's also important to mention that the second half of the year is always busier for me than the first half. This is because I am involved in production of my Aerocatures(tm) Calendar, along with commissions oriented towards holiday gift giving.

 What about copyright and other administrative considerations?

We conclude our discussion with a few important administrative details:

 Can I get fries with that?


This could be a fun project. If you find the above conditions and considerations agreeable, let's talk. I look forward to hearing from you.
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