Industry Announcements for May 2007
Solvents and Cleaners
News for May
Dealing with Art Directors
Life Models and References Used in Art
Harmony of the Spheres
Dealing with Art DirectorsWombat Droppings
by Ursula Vernon
Well, look at that—back in the saddle again! Hello again, O Reader, and welcome back.
Today we're gonna talk about freelance art, and more specifically, Dealing With Art Directors.
A few weeks ago, I gave a little talk at Beloit College in Wisconsin, and one of my rambling diatribes was about art directors. Before embarking on this topic, I went ahead and called for suggestions from art directors of my acquaintance, on the subject of "What do you wish your artists knew?"
The vast majority of them came back with "Deadline, Deadline, Deadline," and in one particularly amusing case, "If another artist flakes out on me about deadlines, I'm gonna start hiring snipers to pop their arty little heads."
The absolute, tip top, most important thing, bar none, is to get the work done by deadline.
I cannot emphasize this enough.
Freelance art is a lousy job for perfectionists because of this one thing. If you're of the mental stripe that says that the art must be perfect, and if it's not perfect, you won't hand it in, I want you to push away from the computer and go sign up for a nice course in any other field of human endeavor. Any field. Interpretive dance. Anthropology. Green Beret training. Anything. Because freelance art will make you wretchedly unhappy.
The deadline is important. And if you flake on it, you won't get another job from them, and you won't get a job from any of their friends, because believe it or not, art directors talk to each other.
Have I harped on the deadline enough yet?
But of course, there are other things one needs to know when working with an art director, and that's probably another two columns there, so I'm going to start with "Things To Ask Your Art Director." And it's even nice and bullet-pointed and organized and stuff, in part 'cos I love you, and in part because these questions are being copied from the notes for my aforementioned talk, because I believe in recycling.
What your art director wants . . .
Okay. Those are the questions you should ask up front, those are the basic expectations that your art director probably has.
Next month, we'll tackle a few more important questions like "What do I send the art director and when?" and "What horrible things might happen to me as a freelance artist?" and "Will I be working with the writer?" and other such exciting tidbits!
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