3PP Suggestion: Finding your market

  • Howdy, Folks!

    So this topic is something I have personally struggled with a lot and I'm sure I am not alone in this. Having proficient artistic abilities is of course crucial but those skills won't matter much if you don't know how to direct them. I know many folks here know they want to work as children's book illustrators but I figured I'd start this discussion to see if there is enough interest in a 3PP episode.

    Here are some starter points:

    What market do you consider yourself to be in or would like to be in?

    How did you find your market and/ or how are you working towards finding it?

    Did finding your market come naturally or did you have to do some groundwork to figure it out?

  • Pro

    @Griffin My market is children's books, towards the younger end of the spectrum (0-6 years old)

    I did plan the children's books part, but I did not plan the younger end part. My work is vector based, bold and bright, so when I started working I noticed that's the kind of work I get. I do mostly early readers like board books, baby books, activity books and educational stuff.

    This is a bit of a miscalculation. I developed my vector style from my former studio job in children's mobile game apps. I like the style, but did not anticipate it would restrict me to the younger audience as it has. I'm more interested in picture books for slightly older readers, but when I look at this market now I realize that my style is not well adapted for that.

    Sometime in the next 1-2 years I'm seriously thinking of tweaking my style to pivot towards the picture book market. You either find the market that fit your style, or you tweak you style to go for the market you really want to work in. I started doing the former, but now I'm thinking I'd be happier trying the latter.

  • @Griffin I would like to say I have found my market, but I am caught between a few in the Children's Book market. I even like areas in graphic novels because of the atmosphere and series of story telling. So you are not alone.

    I am working towards "it" by constantly collecting styles that attract me and pinpointing what market it's in. And also trying to make a bridge from some of those style back into children's books (some crossover is okay because I have seen other children book illustrators use such techniques in their styles -gives me hope). I struggle because I don't always like super cute, I like a little edge/spunk and am more drawn to telling a thought provoking story.

    No to natural as I am still figuring it out.


  • SVS OG

    I think a good place to start is to ask yourself:

    1. What do I like to draw?
    2. What am I good at drawing?
    3. What are the lucrative art markets out there?
    4. Which market will my style be good at?

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