Giving Yourself “Small Wins” in Your Art Career

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I did it. I made the largest piece to date!

It took me over 3 months to get that illustration to where it is now. So much improvement from the last illustration, too! That pose is on point, those colors are cray, that composition is lit. By God I killed it. 🔥

…And now I have to make something better.
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How I’m Improving on Backgrounds

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Someone in a Facebook Art Group I’m a part of asked this question:

“How do you improve on backgrounds”?

And man, as much as I wanted to save the post and add nothing to the conversation out of laziness, I needed to make some sort contribution. I’m not alone in the pursuit of illustrating believable backgrounds. While I am still very much in need of getting my environments down-pact, I offered some advice on what has helped me so far. And this is what I’ll share onto you. 

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A List of Monthly Art Challenges

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Making art can get tricky. Sometimes just a word can spark our imagination, and other times strict rules are the best for creating.  If you want to participate an art challenge but don’t know where to start, here is a monthly art challenge list I gathered up, just for you.

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What Doing a 30 Day Challenge Taught Me

*Reading Time: 4 minutes*The past few months, have been going through an ongoing creative block. There have been times that were hard for me to produce anything, if anything. I had blank canvases piling up. I was afraid to finish paintings in fear I wouldn’t like them. I was afraid to finish paintings in fear that I would ‘waste’ the canvases I painted on. This led me to doing something drastic.

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How to Become A Happier Artist

*Reading Time: 3 minutes*Artists are fickle. Our inspiration is fickle, our sense of self can come as fast as it goes. One thing that I’ve noticed around the art community is the sheer amount of people unhappy with themselves and their work. There’s so many people that complain about their lack of improvement in their art, as well as the many mental troubles they face because of it.​

In order to become a happier artist, you’re definitely going to have to check yourself before you spiral downward.

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How to Design Buttons pt. 2 – Packaging

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This post contains affiliate links. For better information, please refer to my disclaimer here.

Now, you’ve got your buttons sent out and you’re anxiously awaiting that package.

Wait, you don’t? Check out this post on how to design your buttons!

If you DO have your designs, then let’s work designing their packaging!

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How to Design Buttons pt. 1 – File Preparation

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So, you’re an artist that wants to sell their work at conventions or fairs. Or, there’s a cause you’re down for and you want to sell buttons to raise money. Well, I got you covered. Sit back, relax, and I’ll give you the low-key-low-down on my button designing process. 😉

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How Do You Price Art Commissions?

*Reading Time: 2 minutes*This is a question that many, many artists struggle with. I still struggle with this as well! The only thing I can suggest is, always have your prices be a work in progress.

When I took multiple art commissions in 2010, I started small. Really small. I had things priced extremely cheap. I remember back in the day I had a $2 sketch sale… Those were the days.

One reason was due to inexperience and lack of interest from others. What you’ll often read and what I’ll regurgitate is to check your market. Do you have any peers or people on art communities you frequent that you’re watching who works in a similar style? Research their price sheets. Research their following. Are they able to get away with a “Your Character Here” piece for $300? They probably have the followi- (I’ll rephrase that), the right following to back that up.

If you’re just starting out, it’s okay to begin your prices a little lower. But once that value, the quality of your work, and the demand for your work rises, your prices need to do the same.

Just…don’t drop your prices after charging others your current rates. Your clients will be highly peeved when they find out.

This answer will not give you a definite price, nor will any other answer. You, the artist has to decide your worth, but again that’s where that work-in-progress pricing comes in! This year, I decided to look at my prices and determine is this enough for me? Is what I’m being paid for sufficient for the amount of work I do? I’ll be honest, at the moment, no. I’m not satisfied with my prices. But once I answer these questions, I can then decide to revamp my prices depending on how the demand is progressing. And with every year or so after that, I’ll revisit, and tweak my prices as I see fit.

Next time, we’ll talk about flat vs. hourly rates, and how I charge my clients.

Until next week!

~PK

Networking is Crucial for Illustrators. Here’s Why.

*Reading Time: 3 minutes*I’m sure you’ve heard of the saying “it’s who you know” in show biz. Well, that applies to the illustration biz as well. Making connections is the best thing you can do for your business and your quality of life. When you make new friends, colleagues, and acquaintances, not only can you bring value to them, but they can do the same for you.

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