homepage banner

I wanted to create a banner for my homepage using oDesk. Here was my job description:

title: Personal Homepage Banner

I am looking for someone to help create a banner for my personal homepage. Here is a very rough mockup of what I want it to look like:

Here is a photo of me for use in the banner:

guides about what I want:
- all text should be real fonts (not handwritten), except the word "me"
- the picture of me should be stylized somehow (it's a pretty crappy photo ;)
- the banner will sit on an all white webpage, and should have some sort of border (perhaps with a drop shadow)

Note that oDesk doesn't actually let me put images in the description, so I had links to those images in my public Dropbox folder.

I accepted 3 bids for this job, to explore different alternatives. Actually, the first "bid" was solicited by me -- I asked the artist who helped me with "tiger art" if he would be willing to do this job, and he was willing.

Note, I also told each artist to interpret the orange squiggles in my drawing as "steam punk".

First Artist

Here is the sequence of images from the first artist:

I gave the artist a list of changes I wanted, including a blue a background, removal of the mouth and hand, and putting all the text below the lines.

...and then I wanted a mouth back.

Second Artist

The second artist is Raluca Daniela Comanescu from Romania. Here is the sequence of images from her:

I liked the fishing pole idea, and asked for fish in the air as well.

I asked for removal of the eye-piece and leather, as well as a smaller ear. I also asked for more color, showing this colorful stack of books as an example (she had drawn those books).

Then, for some reason, I said I had too much hair.

I also asked if a colorful background was possible, showing an Arizona sunset as an example.

My dad likes the no-background version more, and my mom likes the sunset-background more. I'm torn.

Third Artist

Here is the sequence of images from the third artist. This first image was given to me as part of the bid, which convinced me to interview this artist:

I hadn't actually hired him yet, because I wanted to make sure he understood about the "steam punk" bit, at which point he gave me this:

At this point I had to hire him, and he gave me this final version:

I must say, I like that background. Apparently it comes from this image:

Why am I not using any of these?

Well, I actually have a test webpage using all 3 of these banners, but now I worry that the banner is misleading. It makes it look like I do all the work to create the output, which is clearly false, so now I'm contemplating a different banner idea.