Stephen Malinowski — Work For Hire (custom Music Animation Machine videos)


If you want an animated graphical score ("Music Animation Machine") video made to your specifications,
you may be able to commission me (Stephen Malinowski) to produce it for you. You would own all the
rights to the resulting video (assuming you have the rights to any non-public domain compositions,
arrangements and/or recordings used in the video). This page describes how the process typically works.

First, the client contacts me and describes the project, including such information as:

     what musical composition
     what recording
     how the video will be used
     when the video is required

I respond, saying whether I'm interested in considering the project. If I am, I will then:

     request a score of the composition
     request an MP3 of the recording
     say how my schedule looks
     ask questions specific to the type of project

On receipt of the score and MP3, I quote a fee. If the client agrees to the fee, I accept the project.

Artistic decisions

My goal is to make videos that I like and that my client likes. Before taking on a project, I do everything
I can to assure that there is no conflict between the two. Once I accept a project, I work with the client in
making artistic decisions. The final payment is not made until the client accepts the final product, so it is
in my interest to fulfill the client's wishes.


There are two parts to the fee I charge clients for custom videos:

     1. Labor. My standard labor rate is currently $150USD/hour; the minimum project size is 8 hours.
         Many small projects can be completed in approximately eight hours, so $1200 is often the labor fee.
     2. License. Depending on the intended use of the video, there may be a license fee.
         For videos for private use, or for the client to publish on YouTube (or other distribution channels for
         which the viewer does not pay money to view), there is typically no license fee. For videos that are
         intended for commercial distribution, the license fee is based on such factors as:
               type of project (intended use)
               size of audience (over expected lifetime)
               size of project (budget, run-time, etc.)
               fees charged to audience
               amount of my material that is used (relative to the size of the project)
               amount of "creative" (new) work that I do for the project

Payment schedule

For all but the largest projects, the client makes three payments:

     1. After we've agreed to start the project.
         I begin work as soon after receipt of this payment as my schedule permits.
     2. Upon delivery of the first 'complete' draft of the video(s)
         Drafts are delivered with watermarks, without titles, and in low resolution.
     3. Upon final acceptance of the video(s)
         Final versions are delivered upon receipt of the third payment.

The three payments are each approximately one-third of the total fee. I accept payment by check
(in USD drawn on a US bank), bank wire transfer (client pays any wire fees), or PayPal.

The client is of course free to make payments earlier (e.g. full payment at the start of the project).


My fees are negotiable. I expect to be paid for my time, effort, and skills, but I'm doing work that
I feel is inherently worth doing, so there may be reasons I'd be willing to adjust my fees.

Client resources

Here are some things that potential clients might find useful:

     1. List of other clients.
     2. Chart of renderers. This page lists many of the animation methods I've used in my videos.
     3. Table of techniques. This page lists some of the ways the animation methods may be employed.
     4. Sample videos. This YouTube playlist shows a variety of ways my animation can look.