Having the opportunity to interview Lizzie Christian (Rare Press) and gather research on the topic of freelance illustration left me feeling inspired to work in this way in the future, I learnt from her the art of making and selling your own products and designs online to make a living and the importance of keeping your social media up to date to keep followers and fans of your work interested. From talking to Lizzie Christian I discovered how influential and important social media can be as a platform to push your work further and get it out into the world, the number of likes and comments certain photos get allow her to know which designs will sell best and what to push forward into a product; comments also allow for feedback to help her to develop her ideas and to know which designs work well and which do not.
I continued further research on this topic reading a book, ‘Make your own luck’ by Kate Moross that spoke about what she called the ‘DIY Ethos’ which is part of achieving your goals and cost effectively making and managing your own products to share with the world which I feel is very similar to Christian’s way of working. This book also explores the other options when it comes to becoming an illustrator and tackles problems such as ‘How much should I work for?’ and whether working freelance or with an agency is best for you.
I also continued research on social media with tips on how to best promote your artwork on Instagram:
‘Keep it interesting’ – Instagram is a social platform so its beneficial to post about your daily life as well as your brand and your work. Including works in progress and studio shots are particularly helpful.
‘High quality images’ – High quality images that reflect your work and your vision gather the most interest.
‘Think about the captions’ – Use interesting captions with relevant tags
‘Represent you as an artist’ – Make sure you post things that are relevant and reflective of you as an artist.
I feel through this group project I have learnt a lot about working as a freelance illustrator and have found it both interesting and inspiring to be able to talk to professionals who are already in the field, I have learnt the importance of promoting yourself in order to get work and learning how to properly price your work. I feel working as a team also really helped us to gather a broad range of research in greater depth and allowed us to learn from one another what we have discovered about the world of freelance illustration. I also feel it was particularly beneficial to listen to other groups’ presentations to learn more about freelance illustration and the other options that are available to us as illustrators, such as joining a collective or working for a company.