Me: Sorry, I can’t accept this booking. I could never meet the deadline.
Me: Well, because it’s at least 45 hours of work.
Client: So? The deadline is 48 hours away.
I have a client that I’ve had to babysit for nearly two years. She’s never content and always wants to add more projects, but gets shocked when she sees the bill and insists on splitting it into payments and gets upset when I won’t start on a new project until she’s paid up.
She also loves to send ten emails saying she needs changes made immediately or “by tomorrow at 8am” but then sends contradictory requests and doesn’t reply when I ask for clarification.
The last straw was when I was going in for major surgery on my face and I wake up to an email that she’d sent at 4:00am the morning of my surgery, despite me having emailed all of my clients a month in advance, a week in advance and the day before to let them know that I’d be unavailable for the following week.
Client: Can you call me? I have a checklist of things I need to go over and I need them for a presentation with one of my clients by tomorrow.
Me: Today is my surgery. I’m not going to be available until next week, as I stated in my email. I also won’t be able to make any more edits until you’ve paid up for the design work and site edits from two weeks ago.
Client: Are they putting you under general anesthesia?
Me: Yes, why?
Client: Oh, I guess that is a good excuse then. Can you at least call me tomorrow to go over everything? I think I can only push this off for a day.
Me: No, I’m going to be taking percocet for the next week and I will not be doing any business while taking any pain killers. You were told about this three times. I can give you the email to another designer I work with if this is urgent.
Client: Sure, can you get them my logo and files?
Me: I sent you copies of all of these files last week. They’re in your email.
Client: I know, but I don’t want to dig through them.
Me: Fine, I’ve got to go.
Client: Okay, remember, marijuana is God’s painkiller.
Client: I need a flyer done as soon as possible, if you can. Here’s all the information
He forwards 2 paragraphs of information.
Me: Okay, sounds good. I’ll get it done as soon as I can.
Client: Actually, I need it done by tomorrow afternoon.
I complete the flyer and send it over the next day.
Client: Looks great, but I sent you all the wrong information. Here is the new information for a completely different event with a totally different theme. I need it all done by tonight.
I recently received an email from someone who I had done a logo for in my pre-design schools days, before I knew not to use Photoshop in logo design, or what a reasonable number of revisions was.
Client: Are you still doing that graphics stuff?
He then went on to describe the project. Being wary of this particular individual already, I responded with a professional message explaining that yes, I had finished design school and owned my own business.
I then outlined my hourly rates and mentioned my contract.
Client: YOU CANNOT CHARGE US THAT, THAT IS NOT A REASONABLE RATE! I WANT A FIXED PRICE OF $50 AND UNLIMITED REVISIONS. I AM THE CUSTOMER, YOU MUST REVISE UNTIL I AM HAPPY.
I politely emailed back saying I didn’t think I would be able to provide the service he was looking for.
I had a meeting with a company looking to hire someone on a 6 month contract to handle various graphic design and marketing for them.
Client: OK so we would need you 30 hours a week and you would be getting unemployment benefits plus about £15 a week extra. (This would be £70 a week total)
Me: I’m sorry, I was contacted about this as a designer and was told it was a temporary freelance contract.
Client: It was, but we realised that with your age, you can work as part of a government scheme here where they pay you instead of us, but it’s only for 6 months. If you manage to help us make enough money to hire you at the end of the 6 months we will.
Needless to say, I turned them down.
My new client is a bit insecure. Last night, she sent me an email at 11:50 pm and another at 11:52 pm. This morning, she woke me at 7:35 am with an SMS asking if I’d received her e-mails.
It know it wasn’t in the brief, but can you just…
When you contact me via my website, a few drop-down menus offer some options for the services you might be interested in. It helps me sort jobs and gives me some more initial info on what the client wants.
I received an email from a client telling me they’re after a single half-hour profile shoot, which is offered for people that need a couple of headshots for business or LinkedIn profiles, etc.
This being such a small service, there’s no need for a face-to-face, so we correspond by email. She asks me to meet her at a particular time and place. She wants the natural light offered by the location, and doesn’t need external lighting. I bring my basic kit: tripod, monopod, DSLR, a couple of lenses, and a flash for fill light if needed.
I get to the location. The client is wearing a wedding dress and is surrounded by six other women in matching bridesmaid dresses. She stands up and thanks me for coming. I’m assuming the worst, but I ask anyway:
Me: What’s with the wedding getup? Is it a fitting or a dress rehearsal and I just happen to be getting some profile shots at the same location?
Nope. It’s actually her wedding day, and she’s hired me as the photographer. She starts telling me all about how she wants shots of the people mingling outside, her and her bridesmaids, the groom and groomsmen, and how I ‘should be able to work out the usual stuff on my own.’
I asked her why she told me it was a profile shoot when it was actually a wedding, saying I was dangerously unprepared for a wedding shoot. She tells me - proud of being so cunning - that she figured I’d charge her wedding rates, so she’d get a better deal if she told me it was just a cheaper shoot. I told her that’s not how it works, and gave her my usual price for a wedding. She just shook her head and said:
Client: I’ll give you the price we agreed to and I signed a contract for. Besides, you said you were unprepared - a real pro would be ready for anything!
I chose to leave.
I didn’t feel like reading the help document you sent me, so I figured I would call and have you walk me through it.