November 3, 2010

4 Tips for Finding an Illustrating Job

For us artsy folk, jobs are often a touchy subject.

When you grow up as that kid who sat in the back of every class doodling in every space and margin that you can find, it’s pretty clear your destiny is in “the creative” rather than what most people call “the practical.”

But before we start calling names, let’s just consider illustrating. Almost everything today needs an illustration; whether it’s a concert poster, a children’s book, a website, or a medical textbook. Also in today’s digital age, all you need is your talent and computer, so you can work from anywhere.

Maybe not such an impractical life after all? Here are four tips for making a job in illustrating a reality:

Imagine It

Illustrating means to take that picture in your brain, and put it on paper. So work on expressing those images already inside you, whether through art classes, or graphic design.

Master It

There are many genres of illustration to consider. Rather than dabble in them all, pick one to truly soar in. Whether your interests are technical, fashion, animation, or comic superheroes, if you choose one to focus on you’re portfolio is much stronger.

Communicate It

Talking to clients is very important. You have to make them see what is in your imagination. Try brainstorming, rough sketches, so you both come to an agreement on image and style. Once that’s decided work out fees and timelines etc.

Work It

Put yourself out there. Submit your work to competitions, magazines, publishers. Check out ad agencies, websites (like guru or elance), major companies. After all, you’re creative, think outside the box for places to work.

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