A new situation arose recently and it took me both by surprise and near-dismay. I had a request via my etsy store to sell an electronic copy of one of my artworks. It was a piece called The Wandering Aengus, a script artwork of William Butler Yeats' poem.
My first response was 'absolutely!' A sale through Etsy is always a good thing, it means the shop is working and of course it's a confidence boost. But then I got nervous. If I provided an electronic copy of one of my artworks, what was to stop the recipient from printing and reprinting that piece for their own gain? In this day and age, with news stories about big clothing and printing chains stealing local artists' works, it is hard to trust people with the rights to your art.
So i did some research and found that the best answer is to be transparent (always) with your client and devise a contract between the two parties which agrees to print the piece once only and for no financial gain. I had to get my head around legal jargon and had to really know what I was asking for, but my client was really happy to comply, and they were very grateful that I didn't just say 'no' and not give them a chance to prove their honesty.
It turned out to be a genuinely positive exchange and my piece is now safely in the hands of an art appreciator. It just goes to show that trust and honesty goes a long way, and opportunity knocks in the most surprising ways sometimes.