This is something I've put off writing for a while, but I figure it will never get out of my head if I don't write one of these.
At the end of 2017 I commissioned BadphometArt (now cowboyote) over twitter to redraw a tarot card in their style with two of my characters. At first communications went very well. Julius seemed kinda excited to work with the idea I had and was even throwing out their own ideas for the picture. They told me it probably wouldn't be finished until late January 2018, and I was perfectly fine with waiting that long. we agreed on a price of $75, but I felt like that was a little low and ended up tipping an additional $35; bringing the total amount paid for this commission up to $110
That was when the first break in communication happened. They had a trello, but did not send me a link to it until I asked, at which point they told me that they had somehow not added my commission to it. That was weird, but I figured it was just a simple mistake at the time. (You can see my card on the trello here.)
After that the only updates I got from them in general came from lurking their twitter. It seemed like they had a lot of personal things going on, but they also seemed to be actively working on commissions so I just waited patiently for a message from Julius. However, things became a little odd when my commission suddenly moved to the "finished" tab a month after the stated deadline while still having no image attached to it and not getting a single message from them this whole time.
The next time they talked to me was in April. This is after their accounts had been abandoned and it seemed like they left the furry community completely. To summarize what was said, they were overloaded on commissions and were starting to refund people. I was a little say to hear that I wouldn't miraculously get this art I haven't seen a single pixel of for months, but I wished them the best anyways.
Then I received a message a month later asking if I had gotten the refund. I hadn't.
Then another one 4 days later asking again. Still no.
Then a third message asking the same thing and also asking to confirm how much the refund was supposed to be. I wanted to see this over with and get some kind of refund so I just said the $75 and left the extra $35 as just a tip.
Apparently that was still too much money, though, as I never heard from them again or got any money back.
It was frustrating to have them tease me along for a few weeks before vanishing again. I figured that was the end of it until I was looking through old DMs and saw...
....I had been blocked and they rebranded as cowboyote. Looks like I'm not getting that refund now. And at this point, I'm not counting on it at all. There are things I could have done better. I should have pestered them a little more, and that's what I would recommend other people do too if they find themselves in a similar situation with Julian or any other artist. Having personal troubles is no excuse to ignore customers for weeks and lie about your intentions to give refunds. If they cannot afford to refund they can definitely afford to apologize to myself and all the other commissioners they failed to complete art/refunds for.
(omitting my description of what I wanted because it is very personal/vent-y)