Fellow Artists--Don't Work For FREE.
Fellow Artists--Don't Work For FREE.
Oct 12 2011, 11:18 PM
Joined: 15-October 10
From: San Francisco, CA
Member No.: 19,590
The following aren't my words--they're one of those unable-to-attribute things that The Internet spews out from time to time. I believe it started as a Craigslist posting, but again, it's The Internet, and thus full of inaccuracies and downright lies.
What it IS is a great set of things to think about when you're asked to draw for FREE or design for FREE or consult for FREE by someone who wants your hard work on their project, but doesn't want to pay you for it.
I'd have worded some of these differently, but you'll get the idea. Read on, fellow artists:
Every day, there are more and more posts seeking “artists” for everything from auto graphics to comic books to corporate logo designs. More people are finding themselves in need of some form of illustrative service.
But what they’re NOT doing, unfortunately, is realizing how rare someone with these particular talents can be.
To those who are “seeking artists”, let me ask you; How many people do you know, personally, with the talent and skill to perform the services you need? A dozen? Five? One? …none?
More than likely, you don’t know any. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be posting on craigslist to find them.
And this is not really a surprise.
In this country, there are almost twice as many neurosurgeons as there are professional illustrators. There are eleven times as many certified mechanics. There are SEVENTY times as many people in the IT field.
So, given that they are less rare, and therefore less in demand, would it make sense to ask your mechanic to work on your car for free? Would you look him in the eye, with a straight face, and tell him that his compensation would be the ability to have his work shown to others as you drive down the street?
Would you offer a neurosurgeon the “opportunity” to add your name to his resume as payment for removing that pesky tumor? (Maybe you could offer him “a few bucks” for “materials”. What a deal!)
Would you be able to seriously even CONSIDER offering your web hosting service the chance to have people see their work, by viewing your website, as their payment for hosting you?
If you answered “yes” to ANY of the above, you’re obviously insane. If you answered “no”, then kudos to you for living in the real world.
But then tell me… why would you think it is okay to live out the same, delusional, ridiculous fantasy when seeking someone whose abilities are even less in supply than these folks?
Graphic artists, illustrators, painters, etc., are skilled tradesmen. As such, to consider them as, or deal with them as, anything less than professionals fully deserving of your respect is both insulting and a bad reflection on you as a sane, reasonable person. In short, it makes you look like a twit.
A few things you need to know;
1. It is not a “great opportunity” for an artist to have his work seen on your car/’zine/website/bedroom wall, etc. It IS a “great opportunity” for YOU to have THEIR work there.
2. It is not clever to seek a “student” or “beginner” in an attempt to get work for free. It’s ignorant and insulting. They may be “students”, but that does not mean they don’t deserve to be paid for their hard work. You were a “student” once, too. Would you have taken that job at McDonalds with no pay, because you were learning essential job skills for the real world? Yes, your proposition it JUST as stupid.
3. The chance to have their name on something that is going to be seen by other people, whether it’s one or one million, is NOT a valid enticement. Neither is the right to add that work to their “portfolio”. They get to do those things ANYWAY, after being paid as they should. It’s not compensation. It’s their right, and it’s a given.
4. Stop thinking that you’re giving them some great chance to work. Once they skip over your silly ad, as they should, the next ad is usually for someone who lives in the real world, and as such, will pay them. There are far more jobs needing these skills than there are people who possess these skills.
5. Students DO need “experience”. But they do NOT need to get it by giving their work away. In fact, this does not even offer them the experience they need. Anyone who will not/can not pay them is obviously the type of person or business they should be ashamed to have on their resume anyway. Do you think professional contractors list the “experience” they got while nailing down a loose step at their grandmother’s house when they were seventeen?
If you your company or gig was worth listing as desired experience, it would be able to pay for the services it received. The only experience they will get doing free work for you is a lesson learned in what kinds of scrubs they should not lower themselves to deal with.
So to artists/designers/illustrators looking for work, do everyone a favor, ESPECIALLY yourselves, and avoid people who do not intend to pay you. Whether they are “spec” gigs, or just some guy who wants a free mural on his living room walls. They need you. You do NOT need them.
And for those who are looking for someone to do work for free… please wake up and join the real world. The only thing you’re accomplishing is to insult those with the skills you need. Get a clue.
I guarantee that every single artist on this board is worth more than FREE.
Owner and Creator at PixelFigs
Oct 24 2011, 05:38 PM
Joined: 20-May 08
From: Springfield Ohio
Member No.: 2,660
I can't recall any writer being called out for faking a story...while headlines about artists who fake art seem to be popping up all the time...........hmmmmmmmm.
Light table trace overs, art styles copied, photo and art references that become more than reference.
That "scene" about the flying figures...is just a "scene" in a real story...if you're working with a real writer(which I'm beginning to think you have yet to do) and is no more than a pretty picture (I don't care if it takes you three weeks to draw it) if it's not part of a real story.
That comment really shocks me coming from somebody who writes and draws his own book. Are you telling everybody you just slop up a story with no interest in plot, story dynamic, and characterization just to set up 24 pages of pin up art?
Wasn't that what we got in the 90's? Is that what you want to be known to produce now?
When producing quality comics...as with producing anything of any real quality in life....you can't fake anything.
This post has been edited by G-Man: Oct 24 2011, 05:43 PM
"Reality is only for those who lack imagination" don't know who first said that....but it works for me!
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