Me personally, I don't pick up a pencil, mouse, turn on a computer, put on my glasses, etc..... nothing unless a fee has been determined for the work I'll be doing.
In some cases, a deposit may be required before I start work.
A new client, even someone I've known but have never worked for as a freelancer, asking me to work before discussing price would ...
It depends on what you are looking for. It is not difficult like you said. Blockchain is the hottest skill right now, it opened a huge market. Many people join and develop it to become talents. You can find them in some blockchain or crypto forums, it is a talent pool.
No money, no final design. Full stop.
You can meet with them to discuss what they're looking for, or refer them to your portfolio. You NEVER release a final product until you get paid or money is in escrow.