I was once contacted via e-mail to work for a gallery and provide them paintings. I liked the price, but I had never produced work for a gallery before, nor do I paint. I do draw, and after telling him this, they said that was fine, as long as it was drawn on a canvas meant for painting. Weird, right? The store I bought the canvas thought so too.
Now, I knew next week I was going to be busy with commissions but I had nothing but this project in the meantime. I was still waiting for the check in the mail so that I could get paid some up front, but I decided to start work on the illustration anyway. I wasn’t too worried as they needed me to mail a physical canvas back and that could be done after I was paid. Then I got the check.
It was ten times what I quoted. My client informed me that I was to deposit the check and then send him a check back for the difference. There was a reason my client gave for this, but it was ultimately bull crap, like the whole project.
I went to a bank teller and showed them what proved to be a fake check. If I had just deposited it, it would have taken weeks for the bank realize this and deduct my account for the money. By that time, I would have sent my “client” the difference of nine times what I wanted to get on this project. I was lucky that all I lost was the hours spent drawing and the cost of that canvas.