Insight into being an illustrator at Make a Living Week
Make a Living Week was an interesting series of talks, from individuals both from industry and London Met Accelerator. Asides from it being rather passive and hard to focus at times due to being talked at and only engaged by powerpoint presentations slides for a long time, I thought it was a great opportunity that answered a lot of questions I had about putting my illustrations out there.
Alongside the nitty gritty of being freelance and the financial side of thing, all of which was especially helpful to hear from the speakers, two of my favourite highlights of Make a Living Week were It’s Nice That‘s founder Will Hudson and illustrator Chris Walker talking about crowdfunding via kickstarter.
Its Nice That is where I do all of my daily reading without fail so to have Will talk about how he started it was intriguing in the way he made it seem possible for all of us students to potentially work just as hard and achieve just as much. He particularly stressed the importance of doing. Being proactive and getting started on working towards your ideas as opposed to just thinking about them. This is something I’ve realised from getting out there and meeting my favourite illustrators, talking to people and at the very least getting some really helpful feedback.
On the second day of Make a LIving Week, I really enjoyed Chris Walker’s talk on Crowdfunding and how that enabled him to bring his project to life. Having already been aware of what crowdfunding is and the pros and cons, what I was most intrigued by was the end product as a result from the pledged funds. Let’s Play Murder is a clever, witty illustrative book with such simple text and illustrations and with the use of kickstarter to help push the project into what the creators envisioned made me see the value of believing in your own projects in order to gain the support of others.
Food for Thought
It’s always nice to hear other people’s experiences within the creative industry as it opens your mind to the possibility of what you can do yourself. However, the most poignant speaker for me was illustration agency Handsome Frank talking about the importance of illustration styles and being consistent. I felt reassured to know that having a specific style of illustration has it’s pros and that having a diverse and different portfolio can cloud people’s visions about what you truly do.
This resonated with me as someone who feels as though they’re becoming aware of a style which is something I want to continue to push and develop throughout this final year at university.