If you’ve yet to visit my deviantART site, do so now.
Make sure you look at the gallery. No rush, I promise this will still be here when you return.
Welcome back. I began my dART site back in July of 2011. Originally, all I had were some text pieces. The first art was in December of 2012. As you can see, I’ve added a LOT of art in the time since then.
Over the years, many people who visit my gallery have questions, two in particular.
- How did I get so much transformation art? (That’s not all I have in my gallery, but it’s what attracts the most attention.) And I’ll answer that by saying I’ve commissioned it.
- How do I work up the nerve to ask for such commissions?
The first art I ever commissioned was from an artist advertising in The Buyer’s Guide for Comics Fandom, the precursor to Comics Buyer’s Guide. I asked for some honest-to-God pin-up art of Saturn Girl, Tigra, The Wasp, and Zatanna. And you could say two of these qualified as TF art, as The Wasp was in her tiny size and Tigra was always a cat-woman. (At this time, however, Tigra did not yet have her tail. Oh, and this was the time that Saturn Girl was wearing her cut-away outfit that she wore throughout the 1970s — an outfit which I designed.)
It was late the following year that I found another artist in <i>TBG</i> advertising work, and that was my first true, intentional piece of transformation art:
This was a fairly successful newswoman of the time, and I knew a lot of people at the time who referred to her as a bitch. So, I came up with a back story where she was asking the wrong questions of a magician who possessed real magical powers, with this result. (What I especially liked about this art was how the eyes seemed to realize what had happened to her, but she knew she could do nothing about it.)
It was three years later that I would be able to attend my first major comic book show, Chicago ComiCon of 1980. I was still not realizing that I could’ve asked some of the major artists attending for transformation art. Or, if I did, I was, yes, too shy to ask for it. Instead, I got a semi-nude (not revealing anything, really) She-Hulk from Mike Vosburg (her artist of the time), a Katma Tui (from current Green Lantern artist of the time, Joe Staton, who is now drawing wonderful work on Dick Tracy), and a cartoony Supergirl. The Supergirl showed a concept I’d come up with some time ago, but one that could never have been used in a Code-Approved comic of the time. So this could count as transformation art.
Two years later, I was unemployed for what would turn out to be a three-and-a-half-year period. I managed to make it to Chicago in 1982 because friends went with me to that and we shared the costs. And, from one artist there, I had a drawing done of Loni Anderson as a mermaid. Then, a friend of a friend used a 1960s photo of Sophia Loren to draw her as a mermaid. In 1984, I had Dolly Parton drawn as mermaid. (The artist wrote a word on the side and gave the art a title: SPLOOSH, in honor of the <i>Splash!</i> movie which had come out this year.) The mermaids were baby steps toward more unusual “womanimals,” which included women turned part animals. The following year, I had art done of a popular female TV star of the time done as part woman part cat.) By the time of the Dolly mermaid, I had gotten my job with <i>Comics Buyer’s Guide</i>.
As the years went by, my gallery grew — as did my reputation among artists. In the mid-90s, I went up to an artist I had never met before and told her I wanted a famous princess of the time drawn as a centaur. She looked at me and said “I’ve heard about you!”
Over the years, I’ve attended dozens of comic book (and science fiction and game) shows, and I’ve gotten art from many of them. I even have one piece, which would be hard to scan right now as it’s in a frame, that is a pencil sketch of myself by Rowena Morrill. It’s a pretty old piece. I still had some hair. (No, I’m not naked in it. I wouldn’t do that to the world.)
But, what of commissioning transformation art? It started slowly. As with the art above, there may just be some body parts, such as paws instead of hands or feet, and maybe a tail, and, a bit of behavior modification, maybe a tongue sticking out. That’s for a canine, of course. You might want to do something reptilian:
Whatever appeals to your fancy!
The other thing to keep in mind is that transformation art ain’t cheap! Just one page pieces can be PRICEY! You can be lucky if you don’t end up paying around $40. The drawing in my gallery of my OC, Skye Sparkler (also in my later blog entry about creating Skye) was by Neal Adams, and THAT cost $800!!
Even more costly is if you decide you want a page of panels showing the transformation. The paneled, seven-page story “Convincing the CEO” by LadyNin-Chan
( https://www.deviantart.com/ladynin-chan ) cost me somewhere between $420 – $450 total! You might be able to find an artist willing to take payments in installments BEFORE they start any work on it. And then, you have to decide if you’re also going to pay for inks, color, etc. But the end result can be beautiful beyond your dreams — and those of visitors to you dART gallery! (See the four-page “Possible AR” set in my gallery.)
One other thing to remember if you commission transformation art is to have with you art or photos of the animal or object or whatever you want the subject to be transformed into. During my period of unemployment in the early 80s, I scratched enough together to commission a picture of a woman turning into a hopping frog. I thought, if the artist didn’t know for sure what a frog looked like, he could go to a library and find a reference. He didn’t, and I got back a picture that, among other things, merged the thighs and calves against each other and the body! She should’ve been unable to move, much less hop.
I also learned at that time to demand samples of an artists work. Find out what the artist’s work looks like before you commit to a commission.
You should also have a reference for characters, even if an artist had drawn that character many times in the past. When I commissioned the Katma Tui from Joe Staton, I did not give him a reference for her, and he left off one of her most distinguishing characters: The tufts on her hair! It’s a gorgeous piece, but it’s hard to tell who she is, as she is “out of uniform.”
There are artists who will be more willing to depict subjects as part animal than they will be to be showing any naughty bits OR actions. It’s up to you to decide if that’s acceptable or not. And up to you to decide what you want and how much you’re willing to pay for it.
I nearly forgot, there are several artists who have done work for me on deviantART that I wanted to mention. They all do great work in different styles and they are relatively affordable. They are:
Schnopzilla at https://www.deviantart.com/schnopszilla – A good cartoony style, very good at depicting stages of transformation, starting human and ending animal or AR. Sometimes, if you commission it, he will go backwards from animal to human. Good, reasonable rates. He usually does black-and-white.
Cosmotrama Studios at – https://www.ebay.com/str/cosmotramastudiofbclid=IwAR2Rge6AgUCkcDHNzrONkpd46GeVOsR-GSZKA73IR7cbDle5eb5CRy2DoM — A group in Brazil, they are a little expensive, but worth it! They did my four-page “Possible AR” series. They have several artists you can chose from and find one whose style is what you want. They also did this for me.
The unbelievable color for “Possible AR” was supplied by pikotime at https://www.deviantart.com/pikotime He was recommended for me by LadyKraken, who I will get to in a minute. If you decide to commission from him or any artist, check with them to find out their rates first.
Lady Kraken at https://www.deviantart.com/ladykraken , a wonderful, friendly artist in Spain, she also has a site at Patreon and other places. If you can afford it, do try to become a member for her on Patreon. She does incredible work, and has (so far) done six art pieces for me. I don’t think there’s a commission you can give her that she won’t or can’t do. She’s even done some “reverse” TFs in which certain little ponies and their princesses become human. Below is a concept I came up with for her which MAY have a story someday.
Lady-Nin-Chan (Nina) at https://www.deviantart.com/ladynin-chan has a manga/anime style. She did my seven(!)-page “Convincing the CEO” story. She does her best to work with you to make sure you get what you want.
immortal tom at https://www.deviantart.com/immortaltom is good at weird stuff, sexy stuff, sexy weird stuff. He did my “Global news” piece, which may be the strangest TF in my dART gallery. And that’s saying something! Let him know what you want first, to make sure it isn’t TOO strange for him, but it seldom will be.
I hope this blog entry has been helpful in encouraging people to commission art, and, if they are artists themselves (I’m not, which is why I commission stuff), maybe it will encourage them to accept TF commissions.