Monday, March 26, 2012

The X-Factor of Illustration

I love seeing illustrators reach their fullest potential so this post is for the emerging stars in our industry. Over the years, I’ve listened to and observed so many successful illustrators approach their careers. They each made a commitment to take responsibility and make their success happen. These are some of the similar factors and personality traits which seem to resonate with successful illustrators which you may identify with. I call it the X-Factor in Illustration!

·        Have the drive and ambition to succeed.
·        Surround yourself with good people that can guide you.
·        Make creating images fun.
·        Do it because you can be great at it.
·        Find something magical in your work.
·        Strike emotional chords with the visual images you create.
·        Move people and make them think.
·        Be open to the creativity from whatever source your inspiration comes.
·        Create authentic art for yourself to keep your integrity.
·        Establish your credibility with your audience.
·        Don’t do something just to sell – keep true to your self.
·        Be a good artist so you can be a good teacher.
·        Have confidence and the courage to develop your skills.
·        Have discipline, patience and persistence during your career.
·        Be happy and have a good attitude.
·        Market your work where other great artists market theirs.

If you would like to talk about identifying or re-identifying the X-Factor in your career, please get in touch with me. I’m very generous with my time in working with artists who care about their careers.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Illustration Conference - ICON - is taking place this June - are you going?

ICON - As a founder, first president and co-chair (from 1998 to 2000) I still lovingly call it  The Illustration Conference. I have great memories - from the first phone call I received from Joel Nakamura asking "...we just got back from the AIGA Conference, why don't we do a conference for illustrators?", to joining forces with the inimitable Chris Payne and Brad Holland. The inaugural conference board (including Anne Telford CA Magazine, illustrator Dave Lesh, artist representative Kolea Baker and sponsor chair Kristen Dawson) raised over $100,000 to allow this non-profit organization to continue again and again. The first conference, not without controversy, was destined to be the most successful event in every way.

If you've never been to one, I hope you get to experience the fun of getting together with your colleagues to talk about everything "illustration". The following conference board members have successfully expanded it to include illustrators attending from countries around the world. It's being held in Providence, Rhode Island, home of RISD - Rhode Island School of Design.

ICON7 / PROVIDENCE, RI / JUNE 13-16, 2012

FABULOUS Poster art by illustrator, Chris Buzelli and designer, Jessica Hische

Glen Serbin, publisher of Directory of Illustration recently announced he will be sponsoring ICON7 again and working with them on several marketing platforms like he has every conference. The Directory's commitment to the illustration market remains one of leadership and support.

Sitting at my desk with the Directory of Illustration

Art work created by Scott Burroughs - courtesy of Scott who is represented by DEBORAH WOLFE LTD/

Art created by Scott Burroughs represented by DEBORAH WOLFE LTD/