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  1. #1
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    Default Where can i find cartoonist for my original project for Image Comics?

    I have a really good idea for an entire original comic universe that would be great for a proposal for Image comics, which takes original projects. However, I am the writer not a cartoonist. Where can I find a cartoonist to work on my project. I would rather have a partner who believed in the project that just someone I pay. image is a great company and they allow their project creators to keep the rights to their universes and characters which is amazing. Obviously, I am not going to try to get paid by image but simply offer my project and work for free, so it would be best to find a cartoonist who wants to work for free. I was inspired to do this project because of how few Italan-American superheroes there are and I hope that any cartoonist working with me would appreciate having a bunch of Italian-American superheroes running around. My main character is also going to be pro-life, just in case that is a dealbreaker for some people. I want to develop a comic universe that is centered on the unique place that is New Jersey and it will be largely there to counteract bad stereotypes about New Jersey.

  2. #2

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    Finding artists can be tough for sure, especially if it's going to be a large project. Some starting points: this is our subforum for creators, so it's worth asking there as well. Websites like DeviantArt and Digital Webbing allow you to look for artists who fit the style you like; try contacting a few and see if any of them believe in the project. There's also some people in this thread trying to break into comics; if any of them have websites or contact info up, it wouldn't hurt to give someone there a try.

    That said, maybe first iron out what you'll realistically need for Image to publish a comic. Maybe contact them first? It's my understanding that while Image does work for its creators, in practice you'll still need to put up some financial capital up front. Could be wrong, so contact them first, but that's my impression at least. Figure out how you wanna do that. Maybe self-publishing or a digital-only release makes more sense if the budget is tight? There's also other, smaller, publishers out there if it doesn't work out with Image. 2000AD takes open submissions, for example.

    Lastly, seriously consider the amount of time you can ask from an artist by tuning the story to their lifestyle. I'm gonna be honest here for a second; I think that hoping for an artist to do all the cartooning for free is going to SEVERELY limit your options. The time commitment of a writer is absolutely nothing compared to the amount of work it takes to draw a comic. Industry pros easily take between 3-6 weeks of full-time work to finish a single 22-page issue, and many see assistance of inkers/colourists/letterers. If you're seriously going to collapse all of those roles into a single person you're asking a giant time commitment for essentially no pay.
    Not saying that absolutely NOBODY will take that offer, especially if you can find someone who believes in your project, but it definitely limits your chances. Try having a first script draft done to pitch to people, and seriously consider trimming the story to the absolute bone - maybe even just a few pages, or a single issue length max.

    Good luck on your quest!

  3. #3
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    Don't do it, dude. Do not do it.

    I tried this same thing several times in the past and I was almost always disappointed by the artist's work ethic. Some cannot finish the project within the time agreed upon between them and the client. Here's how it's went down with me trying to hire artists for my comic projects:

    When I contact an illustrator, I ask him his rates. I never make an offer. I ask him what he wants. I make sure to know what I want ahead of schedule: how many panels per page, color or B&W, how many characters, reference photos, how detailed the background is, etc. I make sure to know what I want before I contact him. I always have the script and description ahead of time. I show him examples of art style I want. Then I ask how much for all this. If the price is to high, I never haggle, bargain, or blurt out I can get cheaper elsewhere. My only response to a price higher than I anticipated is the following: "That price is reasonable. Unfortunately for me, that is higher than my current budget. I will contact you when I am able to pay the price you ask." That's all. I've had a few contact me back and offer to lower the price and I've refused, saying, "No, I don't want to insult your integrity as an artist by bargaining. Your prices are reasonable. I will contact you when my budget can meet the price you quoted."

    If the budget works out, I'll ask how long he believes he can take for the project. I never say, "I want it done by such and such time." I have the illustrator set tell me if how long he thinks he can do it. Every time I've hired the illustrator he has set the deadline. Not once have I set the deadline. Guess what? Most can't meet the deadline that they themselves set. Then they ask for an extension based on a number of reasons. Then guess what? At the end of the extended deadline, they ask for even more time. I am not lying at all. I've had illustrators not meet their own deadline, ask for an extension they ask for, then they still can't meet that extended deadline. It gets better: I've had illustrators ask for a 2 or 3 day extension and I gave them a full week extension, they are super grateful, only for the day before the second deadline to arrive and they need more time. And this is all on one page. One freaking page. Who needs more than 2 weeks to do a 4 panel black and white strip featuring one character?

    They throw out a plethora of excuses for their late work: "I didn't have enough money to buy the materials on time," "It's taking longer than I originally estimated," and my absolute favorite: "I took extra work with another client and need to push back the deadline for your work."

    There's nothing you can do to guarantee an artist gets his work on time. Pressure definitely does not work. Paying them huge prices doesn't work either. Even in Japan, with the multi-billion dollar comic industry, the manga artist will have 6 assistants and still get his work in late. There are manga artists making more in a month than Japanese doctors and civil engineers make in a year and they still can't get their work on time.

    When you see someone's portfolio, you may see spectacular artwork. But you won't know he probably took three weeks on that one page.

    Sorry to say this: your comic book project will fail due to late work from the artist no matter what you pay him. You're better off trying to start a vinyl record store than wasting your money being disappointed in an artist with great skills but slow production. Either that or illustrate it yourself.

    If you still wanna hire an artist, I have one suggestion: make sure you meet the artist face to face and he lives close to you. Sit down with him, talk with him, and let him know you wanna be there for the creative process. Make sure he shows you when he's finished the sketches, the final pencils, and the inking. That way he's far less likely to miss his deadline.

  4. #4
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    To leave you on a positive note: your main goal is to write stories featuring more Italian-Americans and showing NJ in a positive light. Therefore, you should consider other art forms to tell stories featuring more Italian-Americans and positive images of NJ.

    Personally, I have been thinking of writing pulp novels and showing them online. I would have images throughout the story. But they wouldn't be illustrations. Instead, they'd be photos. I'd hire a local photographer (probably off modelmayhem) and have him photograph scenes for my story. My story would be more of a mystery or a thriller that features less elaborate costumes and settings than a superhero story would. Writing a detective pulp novel starring an Italian-American detective working in NJ could be an idea for you.

    You could also make a radio story. There are websites where you can publish your radio story and post it online. Radio stories are surprisingly popular. I believe there are more global listeners of radio stories than there are global readers of American comic books. Like comic books, they are a niche market but still reach a large enough audience to be profitable. I'm actually going to try that myself. A script for a radio story is the same as a script for a theater play. Theater plays are easy to write. They are easier to write than movie scripts or novels, since theater plays are dialogue driven.

    Lastly, try making a movie. People have been making movies for less than $1,500 for a while now. You can make an independent film (of any genre) starring Italian-American actors in NJ. Why not? My New Year's Resolution was to have a film produced by the end of the year. You could try to see if you can produce a film by the end of the year too.

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