A potential client has asked if I would consider allowing for a one-time, licensed use of my illustrations/animations. What to charge?

A potential client has asked if I would you consider allowing for a one-time, licensed use of my illustrations/animations. I have never done this before, has anyone had experience of this before? I'm not sure what I should rate the licence use for? And how to protect the work.


  • @Justin Poulter Thank you so much Justin. I have spent a lot of today researching more in to licensing. I feel so happy for the wonderful advice, so for next time I am much more prepared. Thank you for the example this is something I will definitely try to use in correspondent to my client. I am trying to put it as clearly and simple so there is no confusion so this is really useful! Thanks again!

    Victoria :)
  • Hi Victoria! Usage can seem complicated but, when you break it down into categories and time periods it makes it a lot simpler and easier for your client to understand and come to terms with. For example, I would say “usage for out of home (meaning used in public spaces) for a period of 12 months at a cost of £****”.

    Your client could need your artwork for a number of different uses. It’s important that all of these usage categories are agreed in writing with specific time periods.

    Your client may ask for a full buy out fee. This should be charged at a much higher rate (perhaps even 100% of the production fee). This is because they would then essentially own the use of your artwork in perpetuity.

    Hope this helps!
  • @Alessandro Novelli Thanks so much Alessandro for your response in this question. Especially for highlighting this in regards to animation as this is something I was even more unclear about. You have given me some really good points to think about and questions to put to my client. Thank you so much for your valuable help, I really appreciate it!
  • Hello,
    I would check the impact that it would have on the client business, why they do not want a brand new thing, how many people will reach, and where is going to be published and associated with what? I would avoid licesing animation personally, cause the work involved is to much, but rather try to understand what s the client challenge and the resons behind the license request. Also I would avoid comparing your work to gettimages or other images webistes cause they have a different business model than yours. Hope it helps.
  • Hi Victoria - there are many things to consider: if it is a print run, is it a cover image or inside (a cover image pays more). Is it a large print run from a big company or a small business working on a smaller scale? If the latter, then the cost would be less. If it is being used on the web in what context e.g. do they have a large following? On the print side for example, I was paid half of the original illustration cost for an image by a national newspaper for the sole licence, but on another occasion I have allowed a small charity to use an illustration for free as long as they credited me. You could look on image sites such as Corbis or Getty and see what they charge as you don't want to price yourself out of the market, but also you don't want to devalue your work. The other thing to consider is this person is a 'potential client' and could come back for more, or commission bespoke images from you.

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