I recently came across theispot.com, a promotional website for artists, and I would love to know if any of you have used it or something similar. There are a lot of testimonials all over their website, but I consider those useless because a business only displays their best feedback and an overabundance of messages about how wonderful they are tends to make me more suspicious than anything else.
I have to say, on the surface, it looks like a massive scam. $650 per year plus $100 start up fee for some webspace on their site, and then $250 per year to use their "stock illustration" service plus a $15 charge per image uploaded AND a commission fee per sale. I'm not sure how I feel about stock illustration, but all the other websites I've seen which do it only charge commission fees (which is what I would expect from any company which was confident in its ability to sell the artists' work). Being charged just to upload an image seems absurd! Considering illustrators tend to be among the lower earning bracket, $1000 per year is a lot of money. There is zero indication of what an artist might expect to make via the site and they don't offer a free trial of their services either. Their forum is completely dead and there seems to be no discussion of anyone's experience with the site there.
But then I look at the portfolios on their website and there are a lot of very skilled illustrators there, including a few I have heard of. They are all paying those fees, so I think they must know something I don't. It's not something I'd consider right now because I can't afford it, but I'd be interested to know if adding a portfolio to this website suddenly results in a massive torrent of paid work justifying the prices. Can anyone offer any personal experience of this or similar websites? I'd also welcome opinions about using services like these.