Sunday, June 21, 2009

And That's How Time Flies...

8 full weeks seem to have flown by incredibly fast and each day I kept saying.."Must update blog" and every day kept racing away from me without that time to get a topic and share it. I'm sure I've lost some people in the process but I do vow to update at least once a week.

I received an email a little while back asking about illustrator books that I thought I'd share here.

What do other people's illustration books look like? I'm talking literally, not so much content-- like are they normally contained in that standard black portfolio? 8 x 10? Or are they a printed book that you can make on line from places like Literally how many images do they usually include?

I always listen to those great podcasts on Adbase and they speak of such things sometimes, like I just heard mention that in photography plastic sleeves are passe. Just wondering what the current expectations are for illustration.

My Opinion:
I feel like an artist's portfolio is an extension of themselves and gives the viewer some insight to the artist. Most of the portfolios I see are leather bound with the artist's name embossed on the front. But some of my favorites tend to have quirky elements, like a textured cover or a fabric-like cover with your name The one thing I can definitely recommend is keeping the portfolio closer to book or coffee book size. 8x10 is perfect. I've come across portfolios that are so obscenely large in size it makes it hard to flip through at my desk.

I do recommend quality prints and I'd say about 15 - 20 is a good number of images to put in the book. Too few and people feel like you don't have enough work to put in the book and are hesitant to hire, too many and people are overwhelmed. I'd say put together a good mix/range of work that truly represents your breadth of work from personal, editorial and commercial.

I think advice you hear the AdBase podcasts about photography books is absolutely applicable for illustrators as well. I have not seen any portfolios made on blurb as of yet. Definitely if you're putting out a printed book that's meant to be story-telling or a take away book/coffee table book I think blurb is a great idea. For trying to go after jobs I'm not exactly sure if I'd recommend putting forward a printed book BUT I think it's innovative and it really depends on the design of the book and how you put it together.
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