We are a publishing house situated in France “Paris”. We are specialized in the production of educational products forchildren, such as books, books with CD, puzzles, cards, posters and different other products. We have a large daily needs in terms of illustrations, since we have many projects under development.
we are looking for illustrators to illustrate for small children under the age of 9 years old.
Please try to respond as soon as possible on firstname.lastname@example.org in order to have an agreement and to start a long work relationship with us.
We are looking forward for your soon reply.
I recognized it as a scam and ignored it. Later, I saw other people on Deviantart and LinkedIn who had also received this email and were wondering about it. Here's how you know it's a scam:
- They don't address me by name, meaning that this is probably a template email they've sent to many illustrators, trying to get anyone they can. Reputable publishing houses don't mass email illustrators.
- Spelling and grammar errors. France "Paris". Products forchildren. Your soon reply.
- If they're located in France, why are they contacting me instead of French illustrators?
- The sender never names their company.
- They want illustrations for small children under 9, although my style is more suited for older children.
- Their email address uses gmail, rather than a professional address.
- They're already talking about starting a "long work relationship."
- They're vague about what they want.
It's just like any other spam email: poor spelling, vague wording, premature promises. None of these on their own are a proof of a scam, but altogether they raise a lot of red flags. I Googled the email address and found that they have been posting comments on various art and design blogs with this message. In another variation on their email, they quote absurdly low rates - $10 to $20 for "simple level of illustration."
I didn't respond, so I don't know what these people are trying to gather - money, personal info, who knows. It's just particularly mean to prey on the hopes of aspiring illustrators.
Professional publishers don't talk like this. They won't be vague or evasive or have questionable English skills or send emails from gmail accounts. When you get a legitimate email from a publisher, you'll know. When you get an email that feels like a scam, it's probably a scam.