FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions

Over the years, I’ve been presented with lots of questions. Some about my skill set, and others about how my work process goes. Below is a collection of my most frequently asked questions, and some others you might like to know!

Skills & Tech

  • How much experience do you have?
    • Experience since 2001 graphic design and web development concurrently; I’ve been an independent designer/developer since 2007.
  • What graphic design programs do you use?
    • Photoshop, Flash, Illustrator, CorelDraw, Inkscape, GIMP, are the most well known of the apps in the tool belt.
      Photoshop icon Illustrator icon
  • What programming languages and web technologies do you use?
    • HTML, CSS, PHP, JavaScript, jQuery, AJAX, MySQL, WordPress, XML, ActionScript, off of the top of my head.
      WordPress icon XML icon MySQL icon jQuery icon JavaScript icon HTML5 icon CSS3 icon PayPal icon PHP icon AJAX icon
  • Can you do PHP and MySQL databases for websites?
    • Sure can!

What Services Don’t You Provide?

  • I do not…
      • Take pictures for photo shoots.
      • Do on-site work.
      • Provide printing processes of any type. I don’t print CDs, posters — anything (I just do the graphics).
      • Create, record or edit videos

    Hack accounts 😉

My Work Process

  • How long does it take to respond to messages?
    • Responses to emails, questions and quotes usually take less than 3 hours. Longer in the evenings and weekends.
  • How quick is the turn around for static logos and banners?
    • Usually it takes less than 16 hours to create the first draft of your image.
  • Webmaster: Can you do website updates and maintenance for my website? How much?
    • Yes. Prices will vary. Fees are done by hour or a flat rate, depending on the project. Use the contact form for a specific rate on your project.

  • Can you work with my graphic designer, web designer, or 3rd party I have hired?
    • Sorry, JWorks Studios does not work with 3rd party service providers directly. Say you want JWorks Studios to build your website but you have your own web designer, JWorks Studios will not do conference calls or “put our heads together” with your designer by phone or email. It IS ok for you to discuss what you want from your designer and then send us the files you wish to use. But we do not work with 3rd parties directly.
    • In the past, some 3rd party contributors have either slacked off, not produced quality work or could not keep up with my pace. I cannot wait for anyone who is not on their A-game. And that is the reason I do not work with 3rd party contributors.
    • If you insist on us bringing in your 3rd party to work on your project, the service rate will increase by no less than 50%.

Revisions & Tech Support

  • How do free revisions work?
    • Every design project comes with a number of revisions at no additional cost. The revision process is there to make sure the final product is what you wanted.
    • Revisions include things like modifying the colors, tweaking the fonts, straightening things out until it’s perfect.
    • Revisions do not include radical changes. Example: if you request a logo of stylized text of your company name and after the draft you decide you want to incorporate an image of your building in the design instead, that is not a free revision. That is a addition to the initial vision. But you only pay for the additional time spent on the design, not double the purchase.
  • How does free tech support work?
    • After I finish building your website and you give final approval (and payments have been made in full), I hand over control of the site to you. For some time after, I will provide support to you if you need help understanding how to run it. For the most part, tech support is a hands-off approach (meaning I don’t go back in and change anything) unless you come across some errors or something stops working. Through tech support, I’ll coach you on how to make certain changes to your site so you can maintain it on your own. Adding new features to your site is not “tech support”.

Finances & Payments

  • When do I pay for my project?
    • The project will begin with a non-refundable down payment of at least 25% and the rest is collected at set milestones, including the conclusion of the project.
    • All projects quoted $100 and up require a down payment of at least 25%.

  • How do you accept payments?
    • Payments are handled through PayPal. With PayPal you can pay with a credit card or online check, and there is no need to sign up. Invoices are sent at the beginning of the project (for a down payment), after set milestones are met (milestone payments), and at the end of the project (the remainder of the payment).

  • Do I have to sign a contract?
    • Simply put, all of our communications will collectively be our contract. Any request that explicitly asks for a service to be performed is commissioning JWorks for a gig. If accepted, the agreement is then binding. But of course if you’re just asking for a quote or something without using any kind of request or yes-let’s-do-it-type verbiage, that is not a contract.

  • Are there late fees if I can’t pay on time?
    • Depending on the project, I feel I give my clients ample time to pay, which is why I take a down payment and don’t require all payment at once. But you should always have your payment in your possession before the project begins so there will be no risk of incurring late fees.
    • From the moment your payment is late, interest is calculated automatically and appended to the project invoice until we receive payment in full.
    • Current late fee rate is 2% per day once past the overdue date.
    • If a payment is late, there is no obligation from JWorks Studios to make any additional changes, regardless of scale or the amount of time it will take, until the payment is received. JWorks Studios has the right to refuse to make any additions or modifications to a project if you have an unpaid invoice. Also, a refusal of further work does not give you the right to withhold payments that you owe and have not fully paid off. Doing so can result — and has — in legal action.
    • If it appears that the invoice will never be paid in full, JWorks Studios has the right to cease work on the project (if not complete) and/or destroy, completely, the work to which the invoice applies. In the case of graphics, the work could be withheld be destroyed completely. In the case web work in progress, the work can be withheld, reclaimed or destroyed completely. In the case of web work completed, the site can be shutdown until the payment is made in full.
      All projects involving significantly late payments carry the possibility of legal action so that JWorks receives rightful payment (including late fees) for services performed.
    • But do not worry, these cases that result in legal action are extremely rare — months late.

Post-Project & Ownership

  • Who owns the rights to my project?
    • After a paid project is complete, you own the rights to the files I give you, unless otherwise noted. So feel free to tweak my work since it belongs to you.
  • Will you reuse my work?
    • I don’t rehash a design you paid for and resell it to someone else. That’s just tacky.
    • The work I have done may be displayed on my website or as part of my portfolio, and in any of my own advertisements; But just to show off the work I have done. If you would rather not have your work displayed in my portfolio, just ask.

Meeting with Clients

  • Do you meet with clients?
    • Sorry but no, I do not do face-to-face meetings anymore. I don’t do many phone calls either.
  • Why Not?
    • I used to do the face-to-face meetings and lots of phone calls in the past, but over time I have phased them out. There are many reasons:
      • Traveling in Dallas traffic is not fun, and meetings usually last under 10 minutes.
      • I am a freelancer. An independent business owner. I don’t have the luxury of free time to stop working and take a call or meet at a coffee shop.
      • They impede my progress on work for clients who have already put their money down, so I just can’t.
  • Can We Please have a Meeting?
    • Mmmm…Nnnnnnnnnnah.

Work Retainer

  • Can you work on retainer?
    • Yes, I do offer a retainer plan. The way it works is you pay a retainer and that payment will make you an active client and give you priority status (because you have already paid). Whenever you need my services, you just let me know and you will jump to the head of the priority queue. The cost of the work will be pulled from your remaining credit at a discounted rate. Once your retainer funds have run dry, the work progress will pause. From there, you will have the chance to purchase another retainer contract, have me continue to work but pay my standard, non-discount work rate, or allow the work progress to cease at that point until you are ready to resume.

  • What is the benefit of having you on retainer?
    • Keeping me on retainer has a few great benefits for you:
      • When you need my services, you will automatically be moved to the top of the priority queue.
      • The retainer work rate is cheaper than my standard hourly rate since you pay in full upfront (Currently 12%).

  • How much does a retainer cost?
    • The minimum cost of a retainer contract is $2000. There is no limit above that.

  • What is the hourly rate while on retainer?
    • The current retainer rate is 12% off of my standard rate. Standard: $15/half-hour; Retainer: $13.20/half-hour.
    • Comparison: At $1000, you would enjoy nearly 5 hrs of additional work by choosing a retainer over the standard rate.
    • Comparison: If your project took 15 hrs, you would pay $396.00 on retainer vs. $450.00 at my standard rate. That saves you $54.00 for the same amount of work!

  • Can unused retainer funds be returned? What about refunds?
    • If any work at all has begun, no amount of the retainer is refundable. This prevents people from getting the discounted rate that comes as a benefit of the retainer contract and then recouping the unused funds.
    • If no work at all has begun, I will consider a refund.
  • Do retainers expire?
    • After 12 months of no new services rendered, the retainer contract will expire any unused funds are forfeited.