Hi Lore:
For a project of this size, requiring several submittals for review, I would definitely ask for partial payments per submittal. A percentage of the project might be established for the (1) Draft Rendering and (2) final art. So much labor goes into the Draft, that it may deserve a larger percentage.  (80% of my work is done before I do the final art) Plus the client may want revisions after the draft rendering. 

I usually divide the submittals into three: 1. Pencil draft with loose drawings of specific species place in the composition. Then the client reviews and makes comments. 2. Final Draft, a detailed rendering incorporating their previous comments. I specify that any changes in concept after this review might incur extra time and materials.  When all is approved, then I do the 3. Final Art.  That allows the client of make changes in the drafts so not so much detailed work is wasted. 

I ask for percentages of the contract amount at each of those submittals, with the largest percentage at the "Final Draft" stage. 
I know of other illustrators who get to the Final Draft stage and the client pulls the job, and even gets another, cheaper artist to do the final art. This has not happened to me, but when percentages of work are in place, clients will get the message that you will be paid for the amount of work you do.

Just a thought.

Linda M. Feltner Artist, LLC
P.O. Box 325
Hereford, AZ 85615
(520) 803-0538

On Dec 11, 2013, at 9:14 AM, Lore Ruttan wrote:

> Hi All,
> I usually do smallish jobs and just ask for payment upon delivery. However, I've been commissioned to make a large painting commemorating a capital campaign and it will take me quite some time and involve a good chunk of money. Stages in the project are to finalize the list of species that will be painted, complete a detailed rendering of the composition that they can make a banner with, and then the final piece. Should I ask for a portion of the payment at each of those stages? Just the banner and final piece stages? What do others do?
> Thanks! Lore
> -- 
> Lore Ruttan, Ph.D.
> Lore Ruttan Illustration
> Visit my Etsy shop at
> ________________________________________________
> Need to leave or subscribe to the Sciart-L listserv? Follow the instructions at 

Need to leave or subscribe to the Sciart-L listserv? Follow the instructions at