Thursday, July 26, 2012
So here it is, I'm finally finished one letter of four. Hopefully I can find the time to sketch out the other two letters. I have some rough ideas of what I want to do for one of them, but not sure of the composition yet and my original idea for the last year just doesn't look as good any more literally it's back to the drawing board, well drawing paper anyway.
Sunday, July 22, 2012
Friday, July 20, 2012
So this is my fancy promo for the summer. Originally I had wanted to make this as a booklet to send out but I ran out of time to put it together. I still might as a leave behind, but at the moment I send it off as an email promo as a fun way to cool down and something I could imagine my self illustrating. So that's it for now and I go back to drawing.
It's funny that I never talk about the business side of illustration on my blog. It's not a bad thing. It is as it is as it's part of any business 'cause we want to make money. Not because we're greedy, but because money lets us buy food, pay for a place to live and buy supplies to continue doing what we love to do. One of the best advice ever given to me by another illustrator, (Huan Tran) was that "treat illustration as a business" in that think accordingly about dealing with expenses, meeting clients, etc.
I love to draw, but I will have to admit that I don't enjoy the business side too much: bothering potential clients with promos (by email or by mail), killing a lot of trees for my physical promos (I'm really sorry trees and hopefully the promos go into the recycling and not the trash on the receiving end or better yet, they get kept)or contacting and being a bit fierce when payment is way over due. I can see why many illustrators have reps to deal with this at a nice cut of their pay, but nothing is free in life. Everything has its ups and downs as some illustrator will tell you that you don't need a rep and can do it all yourself (thank you Kathryn Adams).
One of the ways to find the contact of potential clients is through companies that have a database of this information. Since Adbase and Agency Access are the same company now, I believe there are really few or no other options left for purchasing contact list now. I've bought list from both services in the past, when they were separate companies and am currently with Adbase (extra month of service for the free shoutout? ... okay, probably not.). So with a subscription, I have access to their database to use to send out promos in whatever means I can afford. Physical promos are wonderful, but costly not due to printing cost, but postage. 61 cent for Canadian postage and over dollar for USA postage which adds up fast. 1000 postcard in Canada is 610$ and over 1000$ for them in the States. A cheaper, and potential more environmentally friend method, is e-mails.
I honestly can't imagine the fun of an Art Director's inbox with all the massive amount of promo e-mails they get. I have had other illustrator tell me that they hate sending out e-mails 'cause some art directors hate it with a passion and others have told me that it's one of the tools we have to promote ourself so why not use it. I send out e-mail promos though I narrow down my giant contact list at Adbase. I can't remember what the last count was, but I have the contact info for thousands of people in the graphic design, advertisement and magazine business in North America. I would imagine that with all the email promos they get, it'd suck a lot to be flooded with these stuff they didn't ask for.
I'm writing this whole long thing 'cause the reply back I got this week to my email promo, which I'll post the illustrations for in the next post. I'm not mentioning names or companies, but the reply was this: "Don't email to this address anymore. You are now considered spam and your services will never be used by my company. Go fuck yourself." It's funny that I didn't notice this before; I had gotten quite a few "Out of Office" auto-replies as it's the summer and things happen so people aren't always at the office. I deleted the "Out of Office" replies along with said e-amil. I went back to double check my deleted email after receiving an apology email, which unfortunately spelt my name wrong as "Brenda Hong" though I will have to admit that my life long friends still spell my name wrong so I guess a stranger spell it wrong isn't too bad.
Said person is going through a rough spot in their life and I'm sorry that they're going through that at the moment. I'm no sure what the issues are, but I wish them the best and I hope things get better so they can go back to enjoying things more. No matter who we are or what we do, we're still humans at the end of the day and we react accordingly under stress. And I'm sorry for all the massive amount of e-mails that they and every other art director or creative director or someone with some creative input in an agency, design firm, magazine company, etc have to receive. Unfortunately, it's one of the few ways I can reach out to potential clients as I can't call up everyone and meet them in person. I think that if I could, I might be at a nice beach right now with a cool drink.
In the creative world, I am a nobody. Few know me and none probably would care if stopped being an illustrator sort of one less spam promo they would have received. I am no James Jean, Jillian Tamaki, Anita Kunz or Marcos Chin where their reputation proceeds them (I remember being a student and having these names spoken of in awe) or steady life long illustrators that have worked for years in the field. I don't have enough steady illustration work to get me by. But I am lucky in that I have a wonderful part-time job that I enjoy and lucky, a wonderful co-ordinator who helps me out as often as she can. As much as I love my part-time job, I love drawing more and wish that I could draw all day and be paid for it.
I am a nobody illustrator trying to make my way so that I can turn what I've always love to do, draw, into something that can provide a living for myself. I am sorry that there aren't better ways for me to reach all you people out there that would hire me and I hope that all you art directors, creative directors and graphic designers that get a promo e-mail can understand a little bit of why you get those.