Requested to provide design concepts...procedure?

I’ve been approached by a large company to provide home accessory design concepts which integrate their existing products.

From their communication: “These designs would NOT go into production. We would own the designs so we could publish them on the web and in handouts. We might hand-build them to have working samples to show at trade shows, etc.”

I’m skeptical of this of course.

I’m unsure what my options are to best navigate this situation and position myself. (I’m new to the product design industry with a background in interiors.)

Do designers usually retain copyrights, share royalites…etc. or just charge a design & consult fee to develop with the respective company… Your feedback, advice, experience, and/or industry standard info is much appreciated.

I think you just need to make sure you get paid. I’d ask for money up front.

A lot of design work never sees the light of day, but it still takes time, materials etc to produce.

If you get paid, it’s a good portfolio piece. Don’t stress if the designs never become mass produced items.

Welcome aboard gc.

You just missed this discussion by a couple of days… Equity Share - how to deal with it. Feel free to join in.

Also try the “search engine” located at the upper right of the screen; use keywords like, commission, freelance, royalties, etc.

  1. Write up a scope of work, and provide them with an estimate of the cost. Do not share with them your expected hours, just the total cost.
  2. As they are a new client, you can ask for 50% to start the work and 50% on the delivery. That way if they bail you aren’t left with nothing.
  3. Be prepared to go back and forth a few times on the proposal. Don’t sweat it. Expect to get chiseled down.
  4. You will get the portfolio pieces at the very least. If you want to retain “ownership” of the designs, you will have to provide a more detailed estimate and project brief explaining your position. Know however that this arrangement is in the minority of client/designer relationships. Usually you just get paid and move on. If they like your work, you get called back for more projects. Perhaps after a few rounds of this you can negotiate product ownership or royalties.

^^^ What Slippy said.