Thursday, October 14, 2010
• Do I have the right kind of art (style and themes) for products that consumers want? Network with successful artists and hire art licensing consultants that ARE willing to tell you the truth and give you constructive criticism. Read "Networking Resource - Art Licensing Forums," and "On Art Licensing Coaches (consultants)."
• Do I have enough art to interest manufacturers? The more art you have the better chance manufacturers will license some of your art.
• Am I approaching the right manufacturers for my art style and themes? Don't approach manufacturers that don't use your art style and themes on their products. For instance, it is a waste of time contacting manufacturers that only uses realistic old fashioned themed art on their products which isn't your style.
• Am I following-up after contacting manufacturers? Read "Art Licensing Tip: What does follow-up really mean?"
* I love to hear accolades about my art. But it is more useful when I receive constructive criticism such as "the art is too busy. You should . . .", "the colors are too dark", "the images doesn't pop", "the text in the art doesn't standout, and "I can't use that theme on my products."
Networking and Sharing Information
Art licensing is about building relationships in the licensing industry. Networking and sharing your knowledge about the industry with artists, licensing experts, and manufacturers helps create those relationships. If you share information, others will also share information so that it is a win-win situation.
I know it has worked for me and it is the reason why I share licensing information on my blog. For example, an art director spent a half-hour going through my portfolio at the Atlanta Gift Show and then proceeded to tell me WHY my art does NOT fit the needs of his company. Some artists may think this is rejection but to me it was HUGE! He gave me invaluable information that helped me improve my art and make it more licensable. On top of that I then knew why I wasn't getting anywhere in licensing my art to his company. When I queried him on why he spent so much time looking through my art and then telling me why it wouldn't work for him, he said "you have helped so many artists (through my blog) that you deserve my help." Wow, I was "blown away" and very thankful for his input!
Artist Khristian Howell benefited by other artists sharing information with her when she exhibited at the Surtex show. Read "Tips from a First Time Surtex Exhibitor" on how Khristian found that by having a positive mental attitude and networking with other artists made exhibiting at Surtex a positive experience. Do you think that she will now share information with others? You bet she will!
Thinking positivity is difficult when manufacturers continue to reject your art. But rejection is part of the art licensing business and you need to continually deal with it. You must be persistent and not give up if you hope to license your art. Read "The Illustion of Rejection and How to Deal with It" by agent Maria Brophy. Also read "Dealing with Rejection: Tips for Card Designers" a five part series of articles by artist Kate Harper.
The last several years with the poor economy has reduced licensing opportunities for many artists. But that hasn't stop agent Lilla Rogers. Read her article "My Thoughts on Being an Artist in a Recession" for tips on improving the chances in licensing your art. And obviously artist and product designer Carol Eldridge hasn't let the poor economy stop her from licensing her art. Read "Licensed Samples and Such...." to see her recent licensing success which shows "that perseverance does pay off!"
So read the articles listed in this blog for information on how artists and agents continue to be positive in a challenging art licensing industry. And become a PAL to increase your licensing opportunities!
Note: I came up with the acronym PAL when discussing positive art licensing with my friend artist Kate Harper. Pictured above is the name badge that she gave me proclaiming that I am the president of PAL. Because Kate is also a positive art licensor, I then gave her a badge proclaiming that she is V.P. of PAL. ;-D
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