Saturday, October 29, 2016

Comic Jam

This last week we were able to learn about running a booth at a convention and we did a comic jam. A comic jam is where one artist draws the outline for the panels, then draws the first image in a specific time limit. After that, the page is then passed to the next artist who draws the next image in the same time limit. This continues until all the pre-drawn panels have been filled. Below are examples of the comics that came about from our comic jam.

After the comic creating, Rachel Everett discussed about having a table at a comic convention.
The first piece of advice was:
  • Do as soon as you possibly can (especially if you want to be a professional)
    • Ready to go as soon as you have stuff to sell
Benefits from doing a convention
  • You don't have to do Salt Lake Comic Con (SLCC) as your first convention. There are smaller conventions that you can try out first.
  • It helps you prepare your portfolio.
  • Gets you out of being a shy artist and helps you market yourself and network with others.
  • Makes you set a deadline for yourself and keep it.
What you need for a convention
  • Portfolio of 15-20 pieces, mostly fan art)
    • Fan art is anything you love, even if it's obscure
      • Draw what you want, not what you think will sell
  • Display set up
    • SLCC provides a 6' x 5' space with a table that is 6' x 2'
      • Also provided are 2 chairs, garbage can, 2 exhibitor badges, and a table cloth
    • You can be creative with your display, just show off your art.
    • You need a banner with your name on it, or the name you are most known by.
    • Set-up should show your work, showing all options to draw in customers
      • Rachel's fan art didn't sell as much her first year, but it drew in customers that ended up purchasing something else instead.
      • Have a variety of personal and fan art work until you are well known
  • Business cards
    • Can write your booth number on back for conventions
    • Also good for outside of conventions
    • Can also try bookmark business cards
  • A social attitude
    • At SLCC you will be there for 12 hours each day for 3 days
    • Having an assistant is recommended
      • Loop wristband ticket around the exhibitor badge lanyard
What you can expect at a convention
  • To not make any money (don't go to make money)
  • Go to learn how to market yourself
    • Get comfortable socializing/talking about your art
  • Make business connections/network
  • Find your audience
  • Have FUN!
Things you need to expect to spend money on
  • Table (Cost for your spot/booth at the convention)
  • Display
  • Business cards
  • Prints
    • Have 5-10 of each print. 
    • Getting prints made at the school is cheap
    • Have them on nicer paper (can bring own paper to school print office) 80 lb card stock recommended
    • Have multiple pieces designed on a page size 18 x 24 and cut them out yourself
  • Clearbags
    • Backing boards optional
    • Can get online or at some arts and crafts stores
    • put your business card in the bag with the print

Pricing recommendations
Rachel had 2 different prices, one for personal art and one for fan art

  • 9 x 12 Fan art - $15   Personal $12
  • 11 x 17 Fan art - $20    Personal $17
  • 1.25" buttons $1
  • Comics $2 or free with purchase
  • Smaller sizes can be done, but there was no recommended prices for them
  • Having fewer options makes it less confusing
  • Cheaper personal art encourages purchase of the personal art.
  • Can always lower prices, it is weird to raise them. 
  • Wait before lowering prices
Printing at UVU advice
  • Use a flash drive, make the prints easy to find
  • Save files as PDFs
    • Combine like-sized images in 1 PDF file
  • Label file names as how they are to be printed ex. 11x17-5copies
  • Combine images yourself and print on big paper and cut out yourself
Price Breakdown
  • SLCC booth - $300 (unless you split the price with another artist and share the booth)
  • Banner - $25-$100
    • tall banners from for $65
  • Printing - ~$100
  • Business cards - Price varies
    • $35 for 1000 at (if I am reading my notes correctly)

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