figuring out logistics
At the initial meeting, you should also discuss the timeframe and logistics of the commission. What schedule are you hoping to achieve? Will packing, delivery, and installation be included? These are all topics of negotiation. You may wish to see progress of the work in various stages to make sure it’s following your idea. If so, talk about this early on so that the artist can work it into the overall schedule. Progress reports can be as simple as receiving photographs of the work as it evolves or even visiting the studio to see the development in person. Negotiate a timeline that adequately accounts for fabrication, packing, delivery, and installation.
Use this meeting to also confirm the budget and payment terms. For a painting, it’s reasonable for an artist to request enough money upfront to cover the materials and any design work, such as sketches or other mockups. This is usually in the form of a 25% to 50% deposit, which varies depending on the overall cost of the commission. In some instances, a written agreement is requested by the artist or gallery rep to solidify the details.