Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Pros and Cons of having a Rep


  1. Thanks again Will! Your advice is again truly appreciated. A big yay for JoAnne! She is such a great person!

  2. Thanks for that, I've been struggling with that very same issue for some time now. Appreciate your honesty and frankness.

  3. Thanks so much for the insight, Will! It really is important to look closely what you sign!

  4. Great post, extremely helpful.
    Thank you!!!

  5. Great advice!

    Woohoo! Follower #300!

  6. Absolutely wonderful advice Will!

  7. Thanks Will! You share so generously!

  8. Will, Great video, thank you for sharing. I was asking Russ all sorts of questions and he sent me your link. I am currently on the hunt and look forward to finding a reputable rep.

  9. Thanks you guys - I hope it didn't come off too negative - I think a rep can be a wonderful addition and perhaps even more to an illustration career. But if you get a bad one it can ruin you. Kind of like finding a spouse....

  10. Hello Will,
    I got your link from Russ Cox as well.

    First, thank you for a wonderful briefing on the subject matter. You really put the topic in perspective for a newcomer.

    Second, there is one thing I guess I just see as a catch-22. I understand why you say that an artist should be finding their own freelance work initially, that is important to have a grounding no matter what field one is in. However, I don't understand how one does this as most listings I see for "children's publishers" in the CW&I Market book and the A&GD Market state that they wish the artist to be represented. So how do you get work in this situation? I have primarily done my own marketing for my SP children's book and have only begun to look for agents/publishing companies recently and find my self confused and a bit daunted by the process. I think for my scenario, as an artist and stay at home mother an agent/rep would be best as I wish to spend my 'free' time creating and freelancing and not so much on the research end (though I know that never ends...)

    I appreciate your wonderful, educational video.
    — Deanna Meyer

  11. Deanna, You bring up some great points. It IS very confusing and "catch 22" is a perfect description. First, not everyone has the same goals or wishes for their freelance work so it's hard to give general advice that fits all. Knowing quite a few editors has given me a different perspective than what you might get if you read the information publishers project. I know that if a postcard lands on the desk of an editor -that editor will look at it. If the image knocks their sox off they won't hesitate to contact the illustrator and representation will probably not enter into the conversation.

    Second, there are many markets other than picture books that use children friendly illustration and they don't care about representation. So I was gearing my message mainly to those illustrators who are trying to transition away from a "real" job or trying to break into the children's book market by taking any paying assignment that comes along.

    For me I've decided to feed my family from my freelance work and so getting as many assignments as possible has always been a goal. But you're absolutely right - we all have different circumstances and needs for getting picture book projects. I know a few illustrators who have done well enough with their books to afford the luxury of working on one book/year and still earn a really nice living.

  12. Thanks Will.
    I too would like to feed my family on income earned doing illos! Trying to wade through a lot of great information and choose what's best for the long term. Good to hear about the publishers and postcards. I am hearing that same info from all over the place, so postcard advertising for myself is my current project.

    I am interested in all aspects of children's work as well. Any market of this genre. Your video was geared toward someone just like me...getting away from the "real" job, going back to substitute teaching is not high on my list. The fact that a good postcard can work to attract a publisher is enough to boost my confidence. If you don't mind, in what markets did you begin in?

  13. Thank you so much for this valuable information. :)
    I just found you today as I am researching publishing e-books for children. I have often pondered the pro's and con's of having a rep.

    Your artwork is great! What fun! I am glad to see you still post Acrylics in the mix of digitals. I will stay tuned in.


    Artist in Alaska / Hong Kong


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