Saturday, June 5, 2010

Follow Along Skin Tone Tutorial and Etsy

Follow Along Skin Tone Tutorial
I have had a few requests for a skin tone tutorial, so I thought I would do one here on my blog, breaking the tutorial up over a few weeks, giving viewers a chance to follow along and share what they accomplished at the end. I will be putting this tutorial up on my web site and DA gallery, when completed.

Materials Needed
Reference photo of a arm ( I am using a reference photo from WC Stock on DeviantArt )
8.0" x 11.0" Professional Grade Acid free Drawing Paper (I suggest Rising Stonehenge)
Electric Pencil Sharpener
Makeup or drafting brush
Drawing pencil

First 3 Color Pencils Needed
  1. Prismacolor Cream PC914
  2. Derwent Coloursoft Pale Peach C570
  3. Prismacolor Light Peach PC927
Note: Make sure to try and keep your color pencils sharp at all times unless stated otherwise.

Start off first, doing a light sketch of the arm. I made my sketch a little darker than normal, so the scan would pick up the lines. If you make the lines too dark, you can go back and lighten dark pencil marks with an eraser.
Next, apply a layer of Prismacolor Cream over the entire arm, using light to medium pressure. Use medium pressure in areas that are of darker value and light pressure in areas of lightest value.
After that, layer Derwent Coloursoft Pale Peach over the cream, using a light to medium pressure. Using the medium pressure again over the areas that are darker in value and light pressure over the lightest values.
Last, apply a layer of Prismacolor Light Peach, using again light to medium pressure. Using the medium pressure in areas that are darkest in value.
Next week, will pick up from this stage and continue on with the lesson....
If you would like to share or have any questions feel free to comment or email me at

For those who don't know about Etsy , it is a place to buy and sell handmade items. From art to jewelry. You can also buy arts and craft supplies there as well.

I have had a store over at Esty now for a couple of years. I have made a total of 8 sales and just made my ninth sale, last Sunday on May 30th. The only problem with my last sale was, the buyer didn't pay me, til today.  I emailed  the buyer once, prior to this, the day after the initial sell,  notifying them I could not ship out the artwork, until I received payment. No reply. I waited for another 6 days, today, before I sent out the second notice. A policy I keep on Ebay is the buyer has 7 days to pay me, before I report them and re-list the item. Etsy's policy is payment should be made within 3 days, before the seller should take action.

I have been pondering all day, did I handle the situation well with the customer. Communication is important when being the seller. It is important to let the buyer know how much you appreciate the sale and appreciate their interest in your artwork.After all, they might be a returning customer.
However, I find it very interesting, when someone purchases your artwork on Etsy or Ebay, why some people fail to pay the buyer right away. Especially, when payment is directly through Paypal only and once you click on the buy it now button, you go right to Paypal. This has happened to me twice now, when the customer delayed in paying for the item. The first time, the buyer got upset, when I sent a second invoice, but she did let me know when she intended on paying me. This second time, no response at all. How do you handle a customer like that.?
I have done some research and have come up with a list of tips and ways of handling non-paying customers through Etsy and/or Ebay.
I hope this list may help other artists in dealing with customers.
  • Specify in your listing or store policy clear expectations - when the payment needs to be received or the payment deadline. Three to seven days is a good time, unless a site policy is already in place.. 
  • Specify in your listing what will happen to buyers, if they choose not to pay.
  • Communication!  Prompt follow-up and communication is a must through invoice via paypal, etsy or ebay. Your first communication should be a courteous e-mail congratulating and/or thanking the buyer the day the purchase has been made. Let the buyer know the item is packed and ready to ship out as soon as payment is received. 
  •  Try providing incentives for buyers to promptly send payments -  Like buy and pay today and get same day shipping.
  • If you do not hear anything from the  buyer within 3 days of purchase, attempt another communication follow-up. Again tell the buyer, until payment has been received, you cannot send the item they purchased. Ask the buyer if he or she has plans to pay for the item or not, so that way you can cancel the transaction and re-list the item. 
  •  After 7 days or more have passed and you have still not received a payment or any communication, send a final email, explaining to the buyer, that since they have failed to pay for the item within the allotted time frame, they have left you no alternative, but to report as non-payment and cancel the transaction. You might still give them another 24 hour waiting period just to see if you get a response, if not cancel transaction and provide proper feedback for non-payment and non-communication buyer.

A couple of interesting Links on Etsy
Etsy Customer Service Tips - is a Four Letter Word -


  1. carol love your new tutorial cant wait to see more you start off so beautiful and easily can follow your instructions you're one of the most talented color pencil artists i know!!

    I have an open case with ebay with a customer who hasn't paid worth of 20.00 plus purchased items and I'm still waiting,it's so hard for me b/c i get charged for my listing and selling fees having an ebay store can add so quickly, i too list and make my policies very clear on both stores etsy and ebay but i dont think buyers who purchase who are planning doing this care much only good thing we have going is keeping our items until we get paid, i agree communication is the number one factor, i always try and have a friendly communication with everyone i had a few problems but the good overweight the bad so far but it's terrible when someone buys and don't pay.

  2. Thank you so much Kat! I love doing tutorials, or giving advice and instruction, it's just finding the time. I wish the scans were a little better. When I put it altogether for DA and my site, I will be putting up bigger images so that will help in seeing the colors and the process.

    Must be very frustrating, especially when you get charged fees. Have you tried calling the person? I have heard ebay will give you the phone number under circumstances like yours.
    I haven't opened up a store on ebay yet, I want to wait til I get a few more sales. I guess now they have a place where if your item doesn't sell, you can post in their classifieds