Will you illustrate my fic for free?
Will you draw my character for free?
How about if I offer money?
Again. No. I will not accept money for art that depicts someone else's copyrighted character(s). I make my own original stories and art, and if someone sold fanart of it, I would have a hissy fit. It would be hypocritical of me to insist that others respect my copyright, while not respecting Rowling's (or whoever's.) Sorry.
Butbutbut... you've illustrated other people's fics!
It's not fair! You're mean!
Yes. I make art for my close friends as a sort of iwuvyou present. (Wiess stuff, Utena stuff. etc.) Are you my bestest buddy? No? Well, there you go. Sorry.
Boy, you sure have a lot of friends. <Dark Look>
*Sigh.* As I surf the net reading random fics, sometimes I get inspired, which means that random strangers get lucky and get unsolicited free art from me. They won the lottery. Feel happy for their good fortune.
HOWEVER, if you REQUEST that I read your writing and illustrate it for you, then you are not a random stranger. You're a potential client. If your stuff is original and completely copyrighted to you (no fanfic!) and you've got money and I happen to have the time, then great. You've got yourself a professional freelance illustrator/graphic designer.
No money? I can't work for free. Not original? I will not break the law for you. I'm not trying to be mean here. This is just the way it is. Please accept my deepest apologies if your dreams have just been violently smooshed. =)