Do You Want To Be A Freelance Illustrator? Part 3 of 3
And so here is the final in the three blogs about this strange freelance life! If you have any questions then do give me a shout, comment below or send me an email!
Obviously you don't have to make videos at all, but if you want to show your painting process to your social media base or start a YouTube channel or make a Kickstarter or Patreon video, then you may find yourself needing to learn how to edit your movies. For short videos you can use smartphone apps such as Splice and Quik (which are free and excellent and make it all look very professional for you), but if you fancy something a bit more advanced for your desktop I can wholly recommend Wondershare Filmora which makes what can be a very complicated process, VERY simple and with professional looking results. For those of you wanting to record their digital process then I recommend ScreenFlow (for Mac) and Camtasia for PC. I think that Wondershare also films desktop too but I've not used this with the program so please do look into that! I have used Screenflow for years when I was using digital. Top Tip: If you are going to make regular videos it's worth investing in some good lighting to get the best results possible. LED lights are easy to find and can be relatively inexpensive.
• Product Photographer
It might seem daft to include but it is surprisingly important. This is something I've only recently started investing more time into and the results are great. Instead of just showing the picture file of the artwork, show it in a physical space too if you can. If it is a framed painting, set it up so that people will see how it might look when it's on their wall. Having a good quality camera helps, but these days smartphones are amazingly good (as long as the lighting is good) at producing quality photos. Top Tip: If you are using daylight as your light source then make sure it is overcast, if not you will get hard shadows. Diffused light works better so if you need to, put a white sheet over the window in order to reduce the hard shadows.
• Graphic Designer
Not all illustrators are good at graphic design, and that is ok! A good rule of thumb however is to keep it simple and classic. For business cards and flyers make it clear and simple, don't use more than two different fonts and above all showcase your best work. I use canva.com to make my ads for social media and it's free and easy to use and they have loads of templates. Top Tip: Do not use hard to read fonts, it might be tempting to go for a super curly wurly 'arty' font, but it will be frustrating if people can't read it. Keep it clean and legible!
• Content Creator
This is connected with social media but also with sites like Patreon which I use. If you wanted to go down the independent artist route eventually, then sites such as Patreon will help you do so. You make the content (comics, videos, tutorials, art etc) and then your super keen fanbase will subscribe to your channel. With Patreon this can be done as a subscription model where people pay monthly to see exclusive content that won't be seen anywhere else or the tip jar model where everything you post is public and then those who want to support you can do so. Both these models work well and there’s no reason why you can’t have a tip jar option as well as subscribed content. Another way would be to start a YouTube channel as many artists have done and use this platform to point all your fans in the direction of your online shop, crowdfunding or website that way. Top Tip: Jump in and get started! Don't wait for the moment when you're 100% ready to start your YouTube channel or Patreon otherwise you will never begin. DO THE THING!
• Are You Ready?
This is an important question to ask yourself. Is your portfolio consistent? If you are looking to get working publishing or gaming or movies or similar do you have 8-12 images in one consistent style? (Art Directors want to know what they are going to get). Does your artwork look close in quality to artists who are already working in the jobs you want? What genre do you suit best? Top Tip: Get involved with online groups like One Fantastic Week and similar where you can ask artists who are already working in the industry you want to work in and get some honest feedback.