Often artists and their work are underappreciated. Many people out there still think that being an artist is very easy and doesn’t require hard work, dedication, and years of studies. Especially when talking about digital art. People don’t understand how hard it is to learn perspective, coloring, seeing what works, coming up with concepts and designs. They probably imagine that it’s just a few brush strokes or that a computer does it for them. Which is not at all true.

A professional painter from Malaysia named Kazel Lim had this experience firsthand recently. She shared screenshots to her Facebook page of a guy asking her to draw a picture of his girlfriend. He wanted a big, detailed piece for 20 yuan… That’s about 3 dollars. Kazel politely declined this very “generous” offer. But when the guy started threatening her with a bad review, she surprised him with a drawing worth the money he was offering. Kazel even gave it to him for free!

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This is the artist named Kazel Lim

Image credits: kazelgreen

A guy wrote her asking her to draw a picture for his girlfriend’s birthday, which was happening the very next day (read the translations below the pictures)

Image credits: kazelgreen

The guy messaged Kazel saying: I’m looking for someone who paints, my girlfriend’s birthday is coming up, I want to surprise her.

Kazel answered: Hello, what kind of painting would it be?

Guy: A picture from our trip.

Kazel: OK, could you give me a photo?

Guy: There are many on my Facebook, you can choose it yourself.

Kazel: Good, but maybe you have a preference

Guy: It’s a lot of trouble to choose. How do you choose the size of it?

Kazel: It depends on the photo or you can specify it. Most people pick A4 or A5 because it’s easier to match the frame

Guy: I don’t know, you can choose the biggest one, but it can’t be too expensive, I don’t have a lot of money and I also will have to give her other gifts.

Kazel: Sorry, the prices depend on the size, the larger the canvas and the amount of color used, the higher the price will be

He wanted it as fast, cheap, and large as possible

Image credits: kazelgreen

Guy: I want the biggest one, and the photo can be of us from our trip by the sea. At the beach, under the sun, you can find it yourself, I won’t pick it today.

Kazel: I think customers with a budget should choose a small size, it’s delicate and economical. The painting process usually takes up to several days, so I don’t want to choose it myself.

Guy: I can name the amount, you could choose it for me.

Kazel: How big is your budget, please? I could you help pick it.

Guy: Initially it was 10 yuan, but I could add 10 more. I want a bigger one.

Kazel: Haha, are you serious?

Guy: ??

Kazel: I cannot take this order, I’m sorry, you’ll need to find someone else.

The worst part was that he offered Kazel only 20 yuan, which is about 3 dollars. The artist decided to give him artwork worth exactly that sum

Image credits: kazelgreen

Of course, the guy became upset at this response: What do you mean? Is this a joke? We talked for such a long time and now you refuse to do it. I could’ve found someone else, now you must paint it.

Kazel: I can’t do it for this price, I put my time and energy + my experience into finishing something. The time spent and the money paid is proportional.

Guy: Now what is this, you can earn some money and you give me this attitude? Most people want to earn money, you think many people need paintings? I have both your IG and your online shop links, so if you don’t paint it, I’ll leave you a bad review.

Kazel: OK, it’s done, I’ll give it to you for free. Happy birthday to your girlfriend!

Kazel didn’t show what and if the guy responded to her last message, but the answer was probably enough for him to get the message.

Here is the masterpiece

Image credits: kazelgreen

Kazel creates amazing artwork and has studied to become an artist for a very long time

Image credits: kazelgreen

We asked Kazeil if this rude behavior happens to her often: “It does happen frequently, which is why as an artist, I try my best to communicate with them and let them slowly understand the value and effort it takes in art.”

Image credits: kazelgreen

Kazel told us what her reaction was when the guy offered her 3 dollars: “I find it funny. There are quite a lot of them who act like this, so I try not to be bothered by them and humorously reply to them. It’s important to not undervalue yourself and don’t work for free.”

Her portraits are magical and whimsical

Image credits: kazelgreen

“There are a lot of them who try to undermine artists and make them draw for a cheap price. So I drew a stickman figure, which only took a few mins and was about the amount and effort he was willing to pay for.” Kazel also said that the guy blocked her immediately after.

Kazel captures the likeness of the person she’s drawing perfectly, while still keeping her unique style

Image credits: kazelgreen

“I have loved drawing since I was very young, and decided to pursue it as my dream. For me, the hardest part is locking down on a concept. The concept changes very easily depending on the elements in a piece. So getting it right does takes the most time.” Kazel mostly does watercolor art and describes her style as “depressing yet colorful.”

Image credits: kazelgreen

“I started creating illustrations right after I graduated from college, been drawing for events and handling my online stores ever since, and will continue doing so until as long as I can.”

Image credits: kazelgreen

Kazel tells us more about what inspires her: “There was once an ‘ang mo’ father and his daughter that I met when I was drawing for an event. She stood there watching me draw live for a while, then turn to her father while holding his hand and said she wanted to be an artist just like me when she grows up. I think the fact that art can affect people, or even society, even in the smallest amount, already makes it very valuable, and that inspires me to continue what I do. Practice makes perfect. Don’t give up easily, even if it’s not fruitful and you do not see any progress yet.”

Image credits: kazelgreen

Image credits: kazelgreen

“After I graduated, most of my friends around me were afraid of not being able to get a job and were in a hurry to get one. I dislike the idea of having fixed working hours, so I tried to go on my own. I joined event gigs myself, printed my merchandise, handling social media, and was surprised that people liked my art. And so I decided to continue down this path.”

Kazel goes to all kinds of events where she does live portraiture and sells her work and merchandise

Image credits: kazelgreen

Image credits: kazelgreen

“Don’t be afraid to go after your dream, even if it does not work out in the end. At least you know that you have tried and won’t regret not doing so in life.”

Asking an artist to draw something for almost nothing is quite insulting to their hard work and dedication

Image credits: kazelgreen

Support the artist’s around you and know that art is not easy to do for a living! What do you think of this story? Do you think Kazel did the right thing? Tell us in the comments down below and don’t forget to go show Kazel love and support on her social media accounts!

Please respect the artists out there and understand that they put their life into their art

Image credits: kazelgreen