How to Build Your Portfolio with Digital Art Commissions

As a digital artist, building an impressive portfolio is crucial to attracting clients and establishing a successful career. One way to do so is through digital art commissions. In this article, we will explore the benefits of digital art commissions, how to find commission opportunities, and tips for pricing and showcasing your work. By the end of this article, you will have the knowledge and tools to effectively build your portfolio with digital art commissions.

How to Build Your Portfolio with Digital Art Commissions

Key Takeaways:

  • Digital art commissions can help artists establish and build their portfolios
  • There are various platforms and communities where freelance digital artists can find commission opportunities
  • Pricing digital art commissions requires consideration of factors such as artwork complexity and artist experience level
  • Showcasing commissioned illustrations is important in demonstrating the artist’s skills and creativity
  • Effective communication and professionalism are key in handling custom artwork requests and managing client expectations

What are Digital Art Commissions?

Digital art commissions describe the process of commissioning an artist to create a custom digital artwork for you. It can be any type of digital artwork, including illustrations, paintings, animations, or graphic designs. These commissions are a great way for artists to monetize their skills and for clients to get unique, one-of-a-kind artwork.

The process of commissioning digital artwork typically involves the client reaching out to the artist and providing specifications for what they want. This can include the subject matter, style, color scheme, and any other relevant details. The artist will then work with the client to create a sketch or mockup, which the client can review and approve before the final artwork is produced.

Commissioning digital artwork has many benefits for both artists and clients. For artists, it is an opportunity to showcase their skills and add new pieces to their portfolio. It also provides a source of income and allows them to connect with potential clients. For clients, digital art commissions allow them to get unique and personalized artwork that suits their needs. They also get to support independent artists and contribute to their growth.

Finding Digital Art Commission Opportunities

If you’re interested in taking on digital art commissions, finding opportunities to do so can seem daunting. However, there are many online platforms and communities where you can showcase your work and connect with potential clients.

One option is to create profiles on freelance websites that cater to digital artists, such as Upwork, Freelancer, and Fiverr. These platforms allow you to set up a portfolio, list your services, and bid on projects that match your skills and interests.

Another way to find digital art commission opportunities is to join online art communities, such as DeviantArt, Behance, and ArtStation. These platforms allow you to share your artwork with a community of artists and enthusiasts, and some even offer job boards or commission sections where you can connect with clients directly.

Networking is also important when it comes to finding digital art commission opportunities. Joining social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook can help you build a following and attract potential clients. Engage with other artists and share your work regularly to keep your audience engaged and interested.

Finally, don’t be afraid to promote yourself as a freelance digital artist. Attend art events and conferences, participate in online challenges and collaborations, and reach out to potential clients directly. The more you put yourself out there, the more opportunities you’re likely to find.

Creating and Enhancing Your Digital Art Portfolio

As a digital artist, your portfolio is your professional calling card. It showcases your skills and creativity to potential clients and employers. When presenting commission work in your portfolio, it’s important to select and present pieces that highlight your best work.

Consider carefully curating your portfolio to showcase your strengths as a digital artist. This may mean grouping your commissioned pieces by subject matter or style. It’s also important to showcase your commissioned work alongside personal pieces, demonstrating your range and versatility.

Tip:Present your digital art portfolio in a professional and consistent manner. This could mean using the same color scheme, font, and layout throughout the portfolio. Make sure your portfolio is easy to navigate and visually appealing.

Keep in mind that your portfolio is a reflection of your brand as a digital artist. Incorporate your personal style and branding into your portfolio to make it unique and memorable to potential clients. Consider adding a brief artist statement or bio to give clients a glimpse into who you are and what inspires your work.

As you continue to receive commission work, be sure to update your portfolio regularly. Keep your portfolio current with your latest work and remove any pieces that no longer represent your style or skill level.

Remember, your digital art portfolio is an ongoing project that should evolve and grow with your career as a digital artist. Keep refining your portfolio to showcase your best work and attract new commission opportunities.

Pricing Your Digital Art Commissions

Determining the right price for your digital art commissions can be challenging, but it is essential to ensure that your work is valued fairly. Here are some factors to consider when pricing your digital art services:

  1. Complexity of artwork: The more complex the piece, the more time and effort you will need to invest in creating it. This should be reflected in the price.
  2. Time invested: Consider the amount of time it will take you to complete the commission, and how it fits into your schedule. Be sure to communicate a realistic timeline to the client.
  3. Your experience level: If you are just starting, you may need to price your services lower to build a portfolio and gain experience. As you grow in expertise and reputation, you can adjust your pricing accordingly.

When setting your prices, it is important to research the market and compare your rates with other freelance digital artists offering similar services. Remember that your pricing should be fair and competitive, but not undervalued.

You can consider offering different pricing packages based on the level of service provided, such as more extensive revisions or faster turnaround times. Be transparent with your pricing and make sure to communicate any additional charges or fees upfront.

Handling Custom Artwork Requests

As a freelance digital artist, you will likely receive custom requests for artwork from clients. While this can be a great opportunity to showcase your skills and creativity, it can also present some challenges.

One of the most important aspects of handling custom artwork requests is effective communication. Make sure to ask the client specific questions about their vision for the artwork and clarify any details that are unclear. This will help ensure that you have a clear understanding of what the client is looking for, and will prevent miscommunication and disappointment down the line.

It’s also important to set realistic expectations with clients. Make sure the client understands how long the process may take, and provide regular updates on your progress. Don’t commit to a deadline that you know may be difficult to meet, or promise something that you’re not sure you can deliver.

If a client requests revisions to the artwork, be open to feedback and willing to make changes as needed. However, make sure to set boundaries and communicate any additional charges that may apply for extensive revisions or changes outside of the original scope of work.

Dealing with difficult clients can be challenging, but it’s important to remain professional and respectful throughout the process. If a client becomes unreasonable or disrespectful, it’s okay to end the working relationship and move on to other opportunities.

Showcasing Your Commissioned Illustrations

Once you have completed a digital art commission, it’s essential to showcase it effectively to attract potential clients and showcase your skills as a digital artist. Here are some tips on how to showcase your commissioned illustrations:

  • Select your best pieces: Choose the best pieces from your commissioned work that demonstrate your skills and creativity. Consider presenting a range of styles and subjects to showcase your versatility as a digital artist.
  • Describe your process: Describe your process for creating the commissioned artwork, including the tools and techniques you used. This helps potential clients understand your workflow and what to expect when working with you.
  • Include client testimonials: Positive feedback from previous clients can help build trust and credibility with potential clients. Include testimonials or reviews from satisfied customers to showcase your professionalism and reliability as a digital artist.

Remember to keep your online portfolio updated with your latest commissioned work and showcase it prominently on your website and social media channels. This will help potential clients easily find and view your work, increasing your chances of landing new commission opportunities.

Promoting Your Digital Art Commission Services

Once you have built a solid portfolio and are ready to take on digital art commissions, it’s time to promote your services. Here are some effective strategies to help you reach potential clients:

  1. Utilize social media: Social media platforms such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook are great channels to showcase your work. Make sure to post regularly and engage with your followers. Use relevant hashtags and consider running paid ads to increase your reach.
  2. Collaborate with other artists and influencers: Partnering with other artists or influencers in your niche can help you amplify your reach. Consider collaborating on a project or offering each other shoutouts on social media.
  3. Attend art events: Attend art exhibitions and festivals in your area to network with potential clients. Bring business cards or postcards featuring your work to distribute to interested parties.
  4. Offer referral incentives: Encourage your existing clients to refer their friends and colleagues to you by offering them an incentive such as a discount on their next commission or a free print of their choice.
  5. Build a strong online presence: Create a professional website featuring your portfolio and digital art services. Make sure to include an “About Me” page and contact information for potential clients to reach you.
  6. Engage with potential clients: Respond promptly to inquiries and provide detailed information about your commission process and pricing. Show your enthusiasm for the project and make the client feel heard and valued.

By implementing these strategies, you can effectively promote your digital art commission services and attract new clients.

Enhancing Your Skills as a Digital Artist

As a digital artist, there is always room for improvement and growth. Enhancing your skills can not only increase your earning potential but also make you more competitive in the market. Here are a few tips to help you enhance your digital art skills:

  • Continuously learn new techniques: The world of digital art is constantly evolving, and there are always new techniques and software to learn. Take online courses, watch tutorials, and experiment with different tools to improve your skills.
  • Attend workshops and events: Attend art workshops, seminars, and events to learn from other artists and gain new perspectives. These events also provide networking opportunities to connect with potential clients and collaborators.
  • Seek feedback: Find an online community or group of peers and mentors who can provide constructive feedback on your work. Use their feedback to improve your skills and identify areas for growth.
  • Practice regularly: The more you practice, the better you become. Set aside time each day or week to work on personal projects or practice different techniques.

By enhancing your skills as a digital artist, you can attract more commission opportunities and establish yourself as a professional in the creative industry.

Dealing with Challenges and Client Expectations

Working on digital art commissions can come with its own set of challenges. Here are some tips to help you manage client expectations:

  • Communicate clearly and regularly with your clients to ensure everyone is on the same page.
  • Set realistic deadlines and stick to them as much as possible. If issues arise, communicate them with the client as soon as possible.
  • Be open to feedback and revisions, but also set boundaries to ensure you are not being taken advantage of.
  • If a client becomes difficult to work with, remain professional and try to find a solution that works for both parties.

It’s also important to remember that your clients may have different expectations or preferences than you do. Here are a few ways to handle these situations:

  • Ask your clients for specific details about their expectations for the artwork (such as color scheme, style, and tone).
  • Request sample images or references to get a better idea of what the client is looking for.
  • Be clear about what you can and cannot do, and make suggestions for alternative approaches if necessary.
  • Be prepared to handle revisions or changes to the artwork, but also communicate any additional fees that may apply if the requests change the scope of the project.

Dealing with challenges and difficult clients can be stressful, but staying calm and professional can go a long way in finding a resolution that works for everyone.


Congratulations! You’ve made it to the end of this guide on building your portfolio with digital art commissions. By now, you should have a good understanding of what digital art commissions are, how to find opportunities, and how to price and showcase your work.

Remember, building a successful digital art portfolio takes time and effort. It requires continuous learning, networking, and promoting yourself as a freelance digital artist. But with dedication and perseverance, you can turn your passion for art into a fulfilling and rewarding career.

So don’t be afraid to experiment with different techniques and styles, seek feedback from peers and mentors, and continuously work on improving your skills. And most importantly, don’t forget the value of professionalism and effective communication in building strong client relationships.

Now, it’s time to put these tips into action and start building your digital art portfolio. Good luck!

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