Fuzzy Pudgies: Pet Portrait Commissions and the Australia Post Debacle

I haven't worked on any pet portraits for a while for Fuzzy Pudgies.  Not since Feb-March anyway.  Things have been very busy.  I got to paint my first one eyed kitties, first time painting Sphinxes and a Ragdoll.  I enjoy painting pet portrait, it's relaxing and it always makes me happy when the client is pleased.  The 2 above, I was commissioned by my hairdresser for her fellow hair dresser friend.  

The cats below, the black tortoise shell was for a completely separate client and she was very pleased to receive it.  It was a present for her friend as her cat recently died.

The 3 sphinxes, sadly never made it to their owner.  I sent it express post on a Thursday and it should have arrived to their owner on the Friday but the Australian Post Office has not been great with getting mail sent on time, if they had, these cats would not have been at an Australia Post facility that got robbed.

I really wished the sphinxes made it to their owner.  I was really pleased with how they turned out and I found them difficult to paint too since sphinxes don't have fur. It was very frustrating to hear that the facility was robbed and it was unlucky that this commission got caught up in that.

I like to play it safe, so I paid extra for insurance before mailing these.  You think if you pay insurance that the post office would honour it but they didn't Not at first anyway, saying it wasn't their responsibility.  Sure, it wasn't their fault they got robbed ( more or less though it looked like an inside job since the people robbing had the uniforms, a van and they knew where to go) but if you pay for insurance, one would assume that the package would be insured.  It took a lot of phone calls, emails and a report to the Ombudsman for Australia Post to finally offer me compensation after several emails claiming that they were not responsible and offering empty apologies.

The lesson here is: if it's valuable insure it and be persistent in getting what is owed to you. More often than not people will shirk responsibility, especially big corporations.  Keep trying, you have nothing to lose anyway and you might gain something from it.  I was paid back the value of these portraits plus postage cost and I was able to refund my client her money without losing any myself.  Yes, I lost time but it could have been so much worse.  

Sadly this has soured the taste of opening my own online shop and having to deal with postage and customer service since it's quite apparent that the Post Office won't be much help if things do go wrong.  Currently trying to think how else I can push Fuzzy Pudgies.  I love being able to create handmade and bespoke pieces but it is very time consuming and it is very frustrating when a client receives either a damaged product or not receive it at all.  I can't just send a replacement, I need to re-paint it again.  

Anyway, hopefully I can think of something else to expand it...once I can concentrate on it again.  It will have to remain a hobby business right now since am trying to get something else going!  


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