Advice For Building A Career As An Illustrator Or Cartoonist

My friend and fellow illustrator Paul Fricke recently sent me a great link:

Advice for building a career as a freelance artist and/or paid cartoonist by Dave Roman

Dave Roman has been working at Nickelodeon Magazine for the last nine years. He is also a frequent lecturer at the School of Visual Arts. This article summarizes his advice for art students just starting out in illustration, comics, and/or cartooning. I’ve been freelancing for over ten years now, and I agree with what Roman has to say. His article is packed with good advice for the beginner (or even the not-so-beginner).

Along the same lines, here’s another great article I’ve blogged about before:

17 Lessons on Freelancing by Megan Jeffery.

Magazines added to Recommended Resources

I’ve added three magazines to my Recommended Resources link at Amazon.com.

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Communication Arts is a quality art magazine for creatives. It’s an expensive magazine printed on thick glossy paper, but it has a lot of good content. Several issues are themed around “annuals” (Design Annual, Illustration Annual, Photography Annual, etc.) which means that a big chunk of those issues contains the latest and greatest work being done in that media (at least, as judged by the editors). Lots of good content in the articles too.Read More

Putting Life In Your Poses

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I recently purchased the special edition DVD of Disney’s Jungle Book. It is widely regarded as one of the all-time classics of animation. Not because of the story. The plot is so simple that the movie should be a total bore. The movie is revered because of the characters. They are so incredibly entertaining and delightful to watch that you can’t help but get caught up in the fun.

That is no small feat.Read More

Stuff I Recommend

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I’m a huge collector of reference books. Among the dozens and dozens of books in my studio, there are a select few that I would highly recommend for any professional illustrator/character designer/animator to own. If you make your living drawing, this stuff can inspire you, boost your skills, maybe help advance your career or even increase your income. As part of my goal to make this blog a truly helpful resource for my readers, I’ve created a list on Amazon.com that organizes them under various headings. Categories include:

—Character Design
—Artist’s Reference
—Art Instruction
—Business/Freelancing
—Animation
—Color Guides (for artists like me who struggle with color)
—DVD
—Misc

A link to the list will be permanently displayed on the blog sidebar.

In the interest of full disclosure I should mention that if you buy something from my list, Amazon.com will toss a few coins my way. I’m certainly not going to get rich off of it, but maybe it will be enough to buy a few extra cans of Monster Low-Carb.

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While we’re on the subject, you may also have noticed the Tip Monkey that showed up on my sidebar a few days ago. I post new content every weekday primarily because I enjoy it. But it does take work. I want my blog to be a fun place, so no pressure. But if you visit regularly and if you’ve truly benefited from it, I certainly wouldn’t mind a small tip now and then. Either way, I’m grateful to have you reading.

Here endeth the sales pitch. Look for new, fun content again on Monday!

Peter de Seve Interview

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Here’s a short but sweet interview with Peter de Seve about his sketchbook. I own a copy and it is incredible stuff. De Seve’s work is amazing. Besides being one of the world’s most sought-after illustrators, de Seve has also done character design work for movies such as A Bug’s Life, Prince of Egypt, and Ice Age. His website is well worth a visit.