Sunday, February 10, 2013

New Ways To Market Your Illustration

In the video below I took the time to explain the changes I've seen happen in illustration markets over the past 20 years and what I think artists should do to take advantage of emerging markets. Yes there still is plenty of freelance illustration work out there but there are more illustrators competing for it and budgets have either remained the same or gone down. The good news is that there are so many new possibilities for artists that unless you refuse to be open minded you and I can find success in many different places.

I give quite a few detailed examples in this video - it's long so put it on while you work - I hope you enjoy it!


27 comments:

  1. That was an amazing video, thanks a lot for putting that up! :D!

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  2. Thanks for the video, watched it all from my sick bed (...OK, couch!) and feel inspired, can't wait to feel NOT sick then I can put some ideas into action.

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  3. Excellent and timely video Will. Thank you!

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  4. What a great pep talk! Are you sure you don't have experience coaching, Will?

    Thanks for posting the video and sharing all that really useful information and...please, stay amazing...

    Tami T.

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  5. Great video! As I sit around waiting to be picked for projects, it's becoming more and more clear that I need to generate my own projects. Can you post links to all the people you mentioned? I took notes, but links would be better. Thanks!

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    1. Hey Laura - thank you! Here are the names- hope I got the spelling right.
      Sarah Jane Wright - Etsy Queen
      Steven Waggoner - Portrait art mentioned at NieNie Dialogues
      Carol Marine - Painting a day - paint workshops
      Jake Parker - $84,000 Antler Boy
      Jed Henry - $312,000 - Ukieo - heros
      Eric dowdel - $40,000,000 city puzzles

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  6. Awesome video Will! Thanks for posting!

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  7. "You have to do to get the dream." - what a great line!
    Many of us really are sitting around waiting for the Big Idea to hit, without realizing that we can manifest it by plunging into the work.

    Another issue that comes up is that many artists have such a distorted idea of the quality of their work, they get paralyzed. I have many ideas, but have trouble settling on one to finish because I can't convince myself that it'll really work.

    While we should all aim for excellence, how do we avoid the trap of never believing that what you are producing is good enough? How does one silence an inner critic who's never satisfied?

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    1. Great questions at the end...I think that if you're doing it for you and you don't settle - you can't help but improve and impress others.

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  8. Hey Will, to answer your question...

    UPA is United Productions of America Animation Studio. It was born out of the Disney animators strike of 1941.

    UPA brought us the unique look and feel of Mr. Magoo and Gerald McBoing Boing. The animators and artists at UPA had a huge effect on the animation of the style as the look filtered over into the illustration styles prevalent in what is now referred to the Mid-Century look.

    That retro look is really popular in illustration, now, but it's super-saturated the field.

    If you want to know more, check out this wiki...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UPA_%28animation_studio%29

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  9. Really well said, Will. You've certainly spoken to my experience of the last decade of freelance!
    Thanks very much...I'll be sharing with my students.
    Laura Huliska Beith

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  10. Informative and inspirational, and incredibly timely. I was right on the verge of giving up on my dream of illustrating when an old instructor told me I should check out e-books. I had no idea what an e-book was, but as soon as I saw it, I knew I HAD to get in on it!! I still send out occasional postcards, but I have so many other ideas I want to work on, that I'm barely thinking about the publishing industry anymore.

    Can you please tell me the name of the girl with the zombie books that you mentioned?



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    1. Hi Dark Kristal - her name is Amanda Hocking...and the others:

      hope I got the spelling right.
      Sarah Jane Wright - Etsy Queen
      Steven Waggoner - Portrait art mentioned at NieNie Dialogues
      Carol Marine - Painting a day - paint workshops
      Jake Parker - $84,000 Antler Boy
      Jed Henry - $312,000 - Ukieo - heros
      Eric dowdel - $40,000,000 city puzzles

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  11. Thank you for sharing this. It was extremely informative and mindful. Great examples and encouraging... actually it was a virtual kick in the pants. :)
    Interesting to hear you bring up SCBWI events/conferences too. I am preparing for my first this spring in MA and am excited and slightly nervous as well. Trying to be more proactive in my marketing attempts as well - so you have given me excellent food for thought.

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  12. Thanks Will. Enjoyed listening to your video it was very inspirational.

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  13. Hi Will, thanks for being a great information resource. I was just wondering if will you ever consider making a video on how to do book covers in the folio academy? Something along the lines of children illustration course. Thanks

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  14. Really appreciate all that you have shared, the reality - down to earth talk. Thanks!

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  15. Thanks, Will. I'm having a particularly strugglesome day today and this has helped me stop lunging for the PS3 controller.

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  16. Great information Will! This should be part of the final classes art students take..unfortunately it isn't taught in all schools. Hope all art students will find this.

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  17. Thank you so much, Will, for taking the time to make this video. It's so encouraging and practical!

    I was wondering if you've had any experience with tumblr? I recently read it's a good place for art professionals to be, but haven't tried it out, yet.

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    1. I appreciate all of your wonderful comments - I read all of them.

      Wendy - Yes! Tumblr is awesome because of the re-blogging feature - if people start to dig your stuff on tumblr you can gain an audience very quickly.

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  18. Great post! I was looking for a illo. podcast I could listen to while drawing and here was this. I really value your insights on the industry.

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  19. Thank you Lori! I'm glad I could be there while you draw :)

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  20. So much valuable information! I work two part time jobs and am a wife and mother. I have been working for two years to realize my illustration dreams, mostly between the hours of 11pm and 1am. But that's okay, because even though I'm unpublished I'm closer then I was two years ago. I have taken a class of yours on Folio Academy and it reminded me again of why I love to do art. I want to thank you very sincerely for everything you put out, it's been helpful beyond words.

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  21. More great info Will. Its all about adapting to the changes and finding new ways like you said. Thanks for sharing.

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  22. Wow that was awesome! I haven't heard such a comprehensive lecture that talks about the recent times and changes of how the illustration industry works and what you can do as an artist to get in. It really stands out next to other lessons I've heard :) Thank you for all these videos!

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  23. Thank you so very much Will for posting this video. I found this video very helpful and a learning experience for me as a student in college.
    Thank You

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