View Full Version : Rate of payment question

05-28-2012, 12:14 PM

I am new to this forum. There are some amazingly talented cartographers on this site, and I am so impressed with the level of skill!

I am working on a rather large project that will require the creation of some maps. I don't mind paying someone for the work; however, I am not exactly "rolling in cash"! :D On average, what are the going rates to commission a map of a fantasy world (the entire world) and then a map for each of the continents?

Thank you in advance for answering (or trying to answer) my question.

05-28-2012, 01:42 PM
First, welcome! Second, as far as I know there really isn't a standard rate. Each cartographer will negotiate with the requestor in private. So your best bet is to put up a request in the Requests forum, mark it Paid ... and then negotiate for a price you're both willing to do business with :)

05-29-2012, 12:04 PM
All right, then. The only reason I asked was because I need to save some money for it. I just need to know how much to save before I post a request.

05-29-2012, 12:36 PM
From what I have read in the various threads we have on the subject, the asking price would depend a lot on the complexity, size and detail required. Each of these three will add time to create the map, and each artist has their own idea of how much their time is worth. At least as a starting point....there are all kind of variables that come into it after....delivery time, revisions, how well you comunicate, the alignment of the stars, the timings of the last great fuzzy bunny migration.....well you get the idea ;)

05-29-2012, 01:03 PM
All right, then. The only reason I asked was because I need to save some money for it. I just need to know how much to save before I post a request.

Another huge factor is copyright vs license. If you get copyright, that means you own it and the artist has no claim over it at all... be prepared to pay BIG for this. License means you and the artist negotiate a contract of what use is allowed by both parties. The more rights the artist loses, typically the higher the price. License could be a huge topic and very vague or very detailed.

For example(probably very contrived.. but possible!!!), "I license you this piece of artwork for use in the book "Name of Book" 1st Edition." Now, this book blows up and becomes a huge best seller and you and the publisher now wants to publish a second edition.... per the terms of the license, you/they may NOT use that same piece of artwork without a renegotiation. Granted, this is a very unlikely scenario, but such things to happen on occasion with artwork and other intellectual property(think video games or Movie franchises based on games/books/comics)

Just a very rough spit ball here and your range could be anywhere from $0 to several hundred dollars(or more), depending on the usage terms, size, delivery format(you will RARELY get the original Photoshop or other base image files...), quality/style, time it would take to make the map(including the PITA factor "only" x number of changes before a final approval),etc...

You could always post in the Request forum and start fishing around, knowing that the artist would likely want some portion up front(25-50% is typical) or at the very least at the half way stage(ie, no more major changes such as "no, you can't move this entire mountain range now that I spent 10 hours drawing it.")

05-30-2012, 01:53 PM
All right, then. Thank you all for the information.