making a living trough commercial art

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  1. #1
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    making a living trough commercial art

    hello everybody im considering becoming a freelance illustrator and i am a complete newbie i was just wondring if its possible to make alot of money through comercial art and what are the diffrent ways off making money? Ive heard about art licensing is that something to consider maybe?

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    It's possible... but you don't want to dive in head first. It's best to aim for an art related day job first, and work your way into freelance if you can.

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    Becoming an illustrator

    Hey guys im thinking about becoming an illustrator. im a complete newbie, im ok at drawing i used to draw alout when i was younger now ive picked it up again? do you guys have any advice on where to start if you want to be a pro illustrator?

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    Draw a lot. Draw from observation, and also practice drawing from imagination (although don't be discouraged when the latter aren't as developed). Too much of only one type of art will probably hold you back. Read some of the better art books to give you a little direction, then draw a ton more, and reread them. Ask better artists to critique your work once in a while, to have them point out the things you may not be seeing in your own work.

    But mostly, draw a lot.

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    Merged.


    Tristan Elwell
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    If making a lot of money is your primary concern, you should probably pursue a different path.

    In the future, everyone will have 15 minutes of privacy.

    Portfolio
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    Build a portfolio of ten to fifteen great pieces that show your range of abilities. Make sure you can do the pieces in a reasonable amount of time, no more than ten days, better if you can turn things around in a couple of days. Never tell someone you can do something faster than you really can. Pass on jobs that aren't your strong suit. It is not just about your art it is about your reputation. You have a much better chance of working if you do everything well. Never get complacent, always strive to be better.
    So drawing and painting from life constantly. Make sure you understand perspective and you can draw the figure well. Don't specialize, one of the reasons I have constant work is I move between fine art and illustration all the time. So when my galleries are slow I do more production/art illustration and when that is slow I paint for my galleries. When things are really slow I'll do portraits and commissions instead of my own stuff. Its all art to me.

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    thanks for the fast replies guys, i get that its best to start off with a full time day job that has something to do with art to get a little experience under your belt.

    I was wonder about one other thing if your a freelance illustrator how important is it to actully live in the country that you want to work in.

    I live in Sweden but i would love to get some freelance work from the US would that be difficult?

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    Its possible, I used to do allot of work for secondary markets in Europe. You have less recourse if things go south because laws are different, and because of this some people take advantage. If you are going to work remotely like that just make sure you are set up to send high quality files and your systems are relaible. You can only tell someone your server is down so many times before they move on.

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  14. #11
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    Freelance illustrator, as in any other freelance occupation, is about your work and who buys your work. So if you've got a decent level but still not a professional; you might begin working on a studio or with other artists, learning what's all about. From that point you will have experience enough to begin to sell some of your work and eventually become freelance. Until then I'd get some experience from that, about how and where to sell your art, to get used to the time pressure, and so on.

    And also keep in mind you will have to draw a lot, that for sure. You cannot even illustrate a pub's menu if you draw like my 7-year-old brother, no matter the experience you have in the business.

    If you want to become freelance, you'll have to work.

    A lot.

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    Since there's ringers in here, how important is schooling when looking for work in commercial art? Can a person have the skill and knowledge and still get the job? Or is that degree going to be typically required? I'm in school but if I'm going to get an art degree it's most likely going to be from a university, not an art school. I'm old and poor.

    Way ahead of myself however. dpaint already saw my rip roarin illustration skills. It was free and I think they fired me. My art career is not beginning well.

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  16. #13
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    You asked is schooling important; I don't want to start trouble but I never went to art school, because the stuff they were teaching then was not my thing. No rules; do want you want; the fundamentals don't matter... So I hit the books and got into a figure drawing group. It took me longer because I would do art for awhile then work for awhile; back and forth till I got professional work. Then I worked harder so I could stay a professional. Got hired on the strength of my portfolio, still do. Lots of pros drop out of art school or don't go because of the corriculum. But then, left to your own devices it is easy to get sidetracked and never do it. Saw plenty of that too. If you want it bad enough you will make it happen, but it has to be earned, thats what I believe. If you can afford school, take it, why reinvent the wheel? but if you don't have the money you can still do it.

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    No one cares about degrees when considering who they'll hire for an illustration job. Look at it this way...your portfolio is your degree - it shows what you can do. Many of the best illustrators/concept people working don't have degrees - George Lucas doesn't care if you have a degree - he cares if you can draw and conceptualize. Is education helpful? Good education is - most isn't good is the problem. Now that may be a little different when looking for a more institutional position - those folks care about that stuff.

    All that being said - a degree or education from an good art school is great in a lot of ways - a degree from Art Center or the Academy of Art would be very valuable - but more because of the level you will reach. They can also be very valuable places to make professional industry contacts - and the big fish (Lucas, Disney, Pixar, Ford, Mattel, etc.) recruit directly from those top schools.

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    Sounds to me like a university art degree isn't going to do much for me other than put me in debt. Might be best to focus on using the art classes I have available to my advantage and just focus on improving my skills. Art school might be a possibility for the future if I can make more money, but otherwise if it's not impossible without the degree there's no excuse not to try.

    Thanks!

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  21. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by slig665 View Post
    Since there's ringers in here, how important is schooling when looking for work in commercial art? Can a person have the skill and knowledge and still get the job? Or is that degree going to be typically required? I'm in school but if I'm going to get an art degree it's most likely going to be from a university, not an art school. I'm old and poor.
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=102315


    Tristan Elwell
    **Finished Work Thread **Process Thread **Edges Tutorial

    Crash Course for Artists, Illustrators, and Cartoonists, NYC, the 2013 Edition!

    "Work is more fun than fun."
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    "Art is supposed to punch you in the brain, and it's supposed to stay punched."
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  23. #17
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    Degrees dont reely matter anymore if you think youre talented enough then give it ur best shot not only you have to draw so much but what matters the most is networking with people & showin your portfolio & I suggest posting some of your original art in galleries & selling some in community festivals those will get your name bubblin u dig??

    PLEASE GO CHECK OUT MY ART PAGE NOW OPEN!!!
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    IM ALSO ON TWITTER!!!
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    & FACEBOOK!!!
    [url]http://www.facebook.com/nethaworld
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