Music Video Directors, don’t start your freelance gig until you get a deposit.
Unless it’s someone you really trust and have a long-standing business relationship with, receiving an advance is appropriate. I’ve witnessed countless producers make beats, artists feature on songs, and video directors produce entire videos only to have to chase down a client for payment. And taking someone to court for an unpaid invoice can be both expensive and time consuming for the already-preoccupied starving artist.
Why ask for a deposit of AT LEAST half?
Incentive. Security. Legroom.
You want to get the other half of the deposit so you will make sure to meet your deadlines as soon as possible.
You want the security of knowing even if your client is dodging you, at least you got half of your money and didn’t wind up going flat broke dedicating your time to their project.
You want the legroom to rent any extra equipment, get transportation, and cover other miscellaneous expenses you need to begin production without a personal deficit.