Chester White?on April 21, 2014 at 12:01 am
So I’m still here everyone! This storyline has taken some unexpected turns since I’ve been writing it by the seat of my pants, but I like where it’s going! But I am still planning to take a break from the strip as soon as this storyline ends. And that leads me to a question for my fellow cartoonists. Who has seen Stripped, the new documentary about comic strips? What did you guys think? Obviously it was incredibly cool that they managed to get an actual interview with Bill Watterson! Amazing!
But, what I’m wondering is: what do you all take away from the movie. I suspect a lot of us really like the idea of generating some kind of income from our strips, but can it be done? It’s interesting to note that most of the cartoonists who are making a living off their webcomics (at least the ones interviewed in the movie) seemed to have gotten in on the ground floor by starting their comics in the late 90s or early 2000s. Is it still possible to break through all of the noise and get a decent sized audience considering there are thousands of webcomics? My take: yes, it’s still possible, but the chances of breaking through are probably similar to your chances of getting picked up by a syndicate and making a living that way. In other words I’m pessimistic.
So that is why I’ve decided to put more effort into my contemporary art career, where I actually have been paid! Not a lot at this point, but some and right now I feel both the cartooning and the art are suffering from the fact the fact that I haven’t completely decided to dedicate my time to either. So as I say, I’ll finish this storyline and see what happens. Anyway, please leave your comments below! 🙂 At the same time, I may come back to the strip, because comic strips are my first love in art, and there is nothing wrong with doing a strip as a hobby. Stay tuned, folks! And I will start to put my art works on this site as soon as I have something interesting! See you all next week! 🙂
I think it’s probably best for Chuckles to turn & walk away right now. This could not end well…
No one can reasonably expect instant success. It’s like winning the lottery. But you have no chance to win the lottery if you don’t play the game. You just have to keep buying tickets each week. Of course in the comics lottery you have a chance to influence the game by your work as well, but ultimately it’s still a lottery. But if you don’t stay and play you’ll never know if you could have won.
I completely agree with you, J.P. It’s a lottery and if I stop I’ll never know. But the same applies to my art career. If I don’t give it my all I wont know if I could have done really well in that realm either. It really is a conundrum. It would be nice to be two people! 🙂
Look out, Heisenberg! 🙂
I wonder how Chester will look with one of those hats?
I really like the direction this story is heading Chris! 😀
I’ll have to watch Stripped. I never got around to it.
But my attitude about creating my comic is this…
I do it because I enjoy telling stories. I do not do it in hopes of making money but I’ll take anything that comes my way. 😉
That is, of course a great reason to make comics. There is none better, in fact. And you sir, are very good at it! But, I actually quit my job to go to art school, and then grad school, so now I actually want to make at least part of my income through art, just so it wasn’t a waste of time! I’ll expand on this in my next post…
This is going to get weird, lol! 😉
YEAH YEAH YEAH!!
Follow your instincts, Chuckles! Or maybe don’t, because what’s the fun in that?
When I began my comic, I had the book, How to Make Webcomics to guide me, and I thought it would be just a matter of following their guidelines and soon enough, a career would blossom. Well, it hasn’t been as simple as all that. I remember seeing a breakdown by co-writer, Brad Guigar, that laid out what to expect in each of the first five years of making a webcomic, and it was nothing like the reality I was experiencing. The “webcomic model” that worked even five years ago doesn’t work the same way today.
There are so many factors responsible for financial success and no straight trajectory to getting there. I’ve heard over and over that the best way to generate interest is to do your best work and it will all fall into place. That’s partially true, we should always do our best and strive to get better, but there are so many other factors in there (advertising, social media, etc.), not the least of which is just pure luck.
I understand why some artists throw in the towel after a while. If they aren’t able to get a foothold even with all the effort they extended, it can be very disheartening. And you know us creators, we are so emotionally involved with our work. One consolation is that I do love drawing the cartoons, and making people happy. There’s that, at least. That may be all one gets in the end.
Thanks for chiming in, Mark! You are a real pro who should be making a bundle for your work.
Anyway, I bought that book too. And who knows, maybe it did at one time apply, but it doesn’t seem to anymore. But it is interesting that the 4 cartoonists who wrote it felt a need to write it. Perhaps to supplement their meager incomes?
In the end, I think any success that can happen to anyone in webcomics will probably come down to mostly luck. Hopefully talent too, but luck will be a major factor.
As for the reasons why the other art stuff is winning out here, I’ll expand on that in my next post. But I am not throwing in the towel on art just yet, even if it’s not comics. 🙂
I like to mix it up in the bathtub personally.
Yeah, works well as long as your tub doesn’t fall through the ceiling! 🙂
I have never heard of Stripped. Thanks for letting me know about it, Chris. I’ll check it out. Also, I understand where you’re coming from. I would love to be able to just work on my comic and nothing else. Work takes much time and energy away from that. But I’m having so much fun doing my comic that I will continue to draw and create my stories.
Glad to hear you’re going to keep going Joseph, you are incredible! the good thing is, I do enjoy doing my other art stuff very much. In some ways I like it more than cartooning, at least in the sense that it gives me more satisfaction. I think my comic drawing needs a lot of work and time that I’m not giving it!