Wake up all of you talented graphic and web designers. And I do mean
talented-(I've seen some of your stuff and it is absolutely great!)
The practice of vendors asking for FREE mock-ups is unprofessional and unethical and needs to be stopped. IT IS LOWERING your standard of living by decreasing the hr/$ ratio. These "vendors" are playing into the rough economy and exploiting it to the extreme. "We'll pay you IF you submit a mock-up and we like it." What a slap in the face! Why should you work for FREE? Would you ask a dentist to fill a cavity for free? Don't undermine your talent! Do you realize that these vendors rely on YOUR IDEAS AND SKILLS TO SURVIVE. They are ONLY as successful as the work that is submitted by the creative talent they contract. YOU deserve more than $20-$100 for a logo or a web template (what a joke!). Ask them if they would take a cut on their profit and see what happens! What do you think portfolios are for? Anyone who has the nerve to ask for a free mockup is totally insensitive to you and should not be discounted for simply stealing your idea(s).It has happened to me earlier in my career. There is such a thing as a kill fee which protects both buyer and seller. THIS IS how transactions should be handled if either party defaults on their end. Vendors need to be educated on this subject. You may ask yourself "why is this my business". My answer to you is this- I've been is the graphic design industry for +25 years and I know demanding it is- especially to a freelancer (I've been on my own for 18 years). You've worked hard to get where you are. There is total lack of respect for the graphic designer- especially since the advent of the computer. Every "hack"
thinks they can design or draw. When they realize they can't, they
come to YOU to bail them out for $5 an hour, while they bill for their time @ $50 per hr. I am sure I am speaking for numerous self employed
creatives who have witnessed this horrific practice. It is up to you to decide the road that is best taken. Enough said. To all my fellow graphic designers out there- I wish only the best for you in your career!