Illustration Agreement Template

Looking for a Illustration Agreement template? Our team has drafted a simple, easy to understand, and easy to customize Illustration Agreement template. Download the contract ( in Word or PDF) and save your precious time in business.

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Free Illustration AgreementTemplate Samples

To help you grow your business we have made a quite simple yet reliable Illustration Agreement template in Word and PDF versions so you can use it repeatedly.
What’s in this template?
  • Project detail
  • Intellectual property rights
  • agreement beneficiary
Click here to get your free Illustration Agreement template

What is an Illustration Agreement?

An “agreement” is most often in the form of a contract, and a contract is an arrangement between two or more entities that creates a legal obligation to do or not do a particular thing or things. Although many clients have contractual agreements they present to illustrators when initiating a job, illustrators should also consider developing their own contract to address the issues that take place in the course of an assignment.

What are the benefits of using Illustration Agreement templates?

The major benefit of using an illustration contract template for any new project is having the project requirements and detailed steps for completion written and signed by the client. Furthermore, a contract will help protect you against late payments or any other issues.

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Important Terms

How to write an Illustration Agreement?

Agreement title: The agreement title can be just about anything, but it is best if it contains the project title. For those who use a job numbering system, it can contain a job number. For example: PH0012 – Parkland Hospital Pathology Brochure Illustration.

Project Description: This should be a concise description of the work to be provided. For example: One full-page, full-color, cover illustration, and two full-color, interior half-page illustrations for the 2012 Eaton Corporation Annual Report to Shareholders.

Usage and Leasing: Usage, as it implies, defines any limits that are to be placed on the publication or distribution of the illustrator’s work. Usage is a vital component in a contract or agreement. Although created for an individual client and a specific use, in most cases, the work is being “leased” by the client for a specific limited term. There are also non-lease situations such as “buyouts” and “work-made-for-hire”. See the Intellectual Property component below. Any conditions of the usage and usage term should be spelled out in writing. Usage limitations can be based on quantity, time, location, or any combination.

Agreement Timeframe: It’s extremely important to spell out the time frame, i.e., schedule for the project activity. This can be done in terms of time such as days or hours, or it can be done using actual dates. Naturally, a project’s timeframe will reflect the complexity of the assignment. Multiple image assignments may have multiple sketch approval and delivery dates.

Agreement Beneficiary: All companies or persons who will receive a benefit from the services provided should be listed. It is very common for an ad agency, design firm, public relations firm, or marketing company to outsource an illustration assignment on behalf of a client. Sometimes more than one company may be involved. All parties should be considered beneficiaries.

Expertise Provided: This can be stated simply as “Illustration”, or it can be written more specifically. For example: Dimensional Illustration, or Digital Illustration for the Technology Market, or Illustration and Design for Packaging, etc.

Services Provided: Services provided is an expansion of the project description that includes the working process and description of deliverables. For example: Subject research, concept, design and layout, two proposal sketches per image subject, one round of revisions per subject, final illustrations, and delivery of digital image files.

Agreement Start Date: The start date is usually when one or more of the following occur: When the contract is signed, when the job compensation is agreed upon, when project input is delivered, and/or when delivery deadline is set.

Compensation: Payment for services can be in the form of a lump sum payment, a schedule of payments, a fixed wage (hourly rate), a sales commission, or a trade of goods or services.

Schedule for Payment: A clear statement of when you should be paid. It is best not to leave this aspect of compensation undefined. And, although it now seems fashionable for clients to delay payment much longer than they should, a payment schedule can be very effective at keeping receivables on schedule. For example: Payment due 2/28/2020. The same due date should be reflected on the job invoice.

Intellectual Property Right: The intellectual property right refers to the ownership of the copyright of an illustration. Simply put, the right to control the usage of an illustration. The illustrator is the copyright owner, which should be plainly stated in the agreement or contract, unless the copyright was sold in a buyout, assigned over to another party, or the work was produced under a work-made-for-hire agreement.

Expenses: Expenses should be mentioned that could be paid by the client or the Illustrator. Types of expenses that would be stated are as follows:

  • Material expenses
  • Outsourced expenses 
  • Resources support 
  • Company support 

Contacts: Assignment Initiation Person: This is usually the person who is working directly with the illustrator. Most commonly it is a designer, art director, creative director, account executive, marketing person, author, editor, company executive, or the company owner.

  • Assignment Authorization Person: This may be the assignment initiation person or a secondary person within an organization. For example: A magazine editorial assignment is usually “initiated” by an art director, but the magazine’s editor is the “authorization” person. It’s usually the editor that grants final approval of an illustrator’s work.
  • Financial Contact Person: It is extremely important to have all contact information for the person the invoice is sent to. It may be the person that is the assignment initiation person, i.e., an art director, or it may be an entirely different person within the company. And, it might even be a person at an entirely different company. For example: When an illustrator is hired by the agency or design studio on behalf of a client, but must bill the end client directly. It is my recommendation that this kind of situation be avoided at all costs. The agency or studio should be responsible for compensation, and most are.

Agreement End Date: The agreement end date should be stated in advance. It may be when the project has been delivered and payment has been received or it may not. It is altogether possible for an end date to extend beyond the point of completion. A situation may also occur where an illustrator may be bound by a limited non-compete restriction. As an option, agreement end dates can also be made renewable.

Signatures: Last but not least, a statement approving the project and the terms specified in the contract with a start date. Lines for authorization signatures and signature dates should be included for both the client and the illustrator.

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs about our Illustration Agreement Templates

 We recognize that your contract layout conditions may need to be changed to be in line together with your client’s needs. That’s why we have made Contrat in Word format as well so  that you’ll be able make adjustments as you like. If you want to make important changes to the template, we propose you to get help of  a lawyer or conveyancer to make sure you still have protection.

The illustration industry works on the basis that artists grant licences to clients so they can use the illustrations for a particular purpose, in a specific region, for a certain amount of time. For every job you take on you should have a defined licence agreed with the client up-front.

Illustrators get paid royalties if they have signed a contract stating that they will receive a percentage of each sale of the product they were hired to create. The percentage of royalties is typically between 5% and 10% and starts being paid to the illustrator once their advance has been ‘earned out’.