My Portfolio / Need Critiques please.

  • @NessIllustration

    I would like to work as a freelancer and work on several projects at once, but I do not know how to find clients and I have no experience in business management ... I would also like to illustrate children's books, but I find that it does not pay enough for the whole number of hours I put in the illustration design of it ... I do not know what to do, I'm a little discouraged ... I thought that the only option that was offered to me was to be able to work in the animation sector because of the stability.

  • Pro

    @Jérémie-Lecompte It is stable, but it's not the only option for sure 🙂 Good news is you've come to the right place to learn about finding clients and business management! There are plenty of people here on the forum working pro full-time or on their way there and we will all be happy to give you advice. I would also suggest listening to the SVSlearn podcast if you haven't already, they give a lot of business advice like how to build your portfolio, how to network, pros and cons of an agent, etc.

    For children's books, if you are looking at French Canadian publishers it's true that sometimes it doesn't pay much. However you don't have to stay in that market. I made my first 2 books with a French Canadian publisher to get experience and portfolio material, and after that was able to get book contracts in the US and UK. Those pay much better! You can also negotiate. Recently that French Canadian publisher asked me to work on a new book for them, but the pay was much too low. I explained why this isn't viable for me as a professional, and told them the very minimum I could do the book for. Surprisingly, they told me they will try to find the money. I still don't know how this will shake out, but it just goes to show that you never know!

  • @NessIllustration ♥ thank you for your advice, that help me a lot.

  • SVS OG

    Hi! You have good pieces here. Are you trying to get into Animation school or are you trying to get an Animation job? If you’re trying to get into school, you need to show more real life figure drawings of humans, animals, etc. Do a lot of gestural drawings. If you’re trying to get a job, you need an animation reel. Pehaps you can make a short animation of some sort?

    Now, i don’t want to sound rude but I don’t think this Portfolio is suited for animation. Also, in animation you are not expected to be a master of one style. Animation studios expect their employees to be versatile in many styles. Each new project that you’re going to work on will have different looks and you need to show that you’re capable of adapting to it whatever it may be. I do hope this was helpful. Feel free to ask more questions.

  • SVS OG

    @Jérémie-Lecompte hi after reading a few comments, I learned that you want to be in concept development? That’s cool! Now, is your portfolio good enough? I have to be honest here and say you’re still not there yet.

    You need to polish your draftsmanship, you need to master your forms, values and colors. You still need to develop your skills. The concept art or visual development field is very competitive and most of the artists who are working in this field are miles ahead of your level. If you want to compete you need to level up.

    On a brighter note though, we are here to help. We are not visual developers here but we can help you with your fundamentals. If you want to learn visual develpment, Schoolism and CGMA have classes specifically geared for these areas. They have a lot of great teachers there and a lot of their alumni got jobs at major studios or are currently working freelance. Perhaps give them a try.

    This might be discouraging to hear but don’t loose hope just yet. The art industry especially visual development usually take years to master and find sound footing in. There are still a lot of challeneges ahead but if you’re really determined and you work really hard for it, you’ll get there.

  • Moderator

    @Nyrryl-Cadiz @Jérémie-Lecompte
    I was going to suggest Schoolism as well.
    I follow both Schoolism and Bobby Chiu on you tube, I think if you are looking into that area of work, then these might be a good place to start researching so you know for sure.

  • @burvantill @Nyrryl-Cadiz

    I do not really like the style of Schoolism teachers. I think Will Terry is better than them. I think they have nothing to really teach me concretely. Will Terry has more experience than them and personally I have not seen better than Will so far. So I will stay on this site and continue to buy Will's classes.

  • Hi, @Jérémie-Lecompte It might be helpful to decide which particular job you are interested in the most. This does not mean that you turn down other job opportunities in the animation industry. This just means that you can perfect your portfolio geared towards a specific job title.

    In order to make a decision on a job title, you need to know a bit more about the industry. I do not know the animation world very much personally. But I thought I will share my strategy of getting to know a new industry (I worked as a UX designer for 10 years, and switched to becoming a picturebook illustrator two years ago).

    1. Find podcasts that talk about the industry - Learn what is like being a concept artist, or character designer, or background painter, and how other people made it in that industry. (don't just listen to one source, listen to a number of them, after a while, hopefully, you would start to see some kind of pattern, or get to know what type of skills are required for different job titles).
    2. Find an online tribe that is more focused on animation. SVS is fantastic. But I think it is more geared towards children's books. if I would want to work for animation, I would still stick around SVS for improving my fundamentals, but I would also reach out to another community that is more geared towards animation. I found that following conversations on this forum has really enriched my knowledge of the picture book industry because a lot of people here share their industry experiences, and ask industry-specific questions. I assume joining an animation centered forum will have similar benefits for you.
    3. If you can, find a mentor in the animation industry - Someone that is a couple of years ahead of you in his/her career. This will save you so much time.

  • Thank you @xin-li

    My dream job would be to work as a children's book illustrator. because I love the joyful, colorful and simple world of children's storytelling. But the problem is that I do not know how to find a mentor in this area, I do not know how to find customers, I do not know how to manage my income and charge taxes to my customers and after declaring it. I have just illustrated a single book for children so far and I have not much experience. In my country we pay $ 2,000 + 5% an illustrator for illustrations of a children's book ... In the United States I think it's $ 10,000 ... there's still a big difference in price...

    Will you advise me some courses on this site to learn at the management level?

    Because as I said my dream would really be to be able to illustrate children's books but it's just a question of money and management.

    (Sorry for my English, I'm French Canadian and
    I use a lot Google Translate)

  • Moderator

    @Jérémie-Lecompte I figured you for a will terry guy. Some of your art is very reminiscent of will terry’s.

  • @Jérémie-Lecompte
    If you want to illustrate picture books, a good place to start would be by joining (Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators). They have chapters all over the world, sponsor conferences, and have critique groups (some by email) and online webinars, some aimed at illustrating children's picture books. Also contests for illustrators.

    There are several classes on svslearn about picture books. They will give you important background on the industry. There are also books that give a lot of help on illustrating for picture books. Search for them in your local library and read as many recent picture books as you can. See how the illustrators add more than half to the book.

  • @burvantill Yes, Will is my favorite artist among the thousands of other artists I've seen on the web.

    @Laura-Brown Thank you ^_^

  • @Jérémie-Lecompte

    Looking over your pieces, the first one you posted seems the most mature color/lighting, story wise, but I will agree with Nyrryl Cadiz that your drawing could use some work. (Of course, mine can, too).

    I would recommend the How to Draw Everything class. I've been going through that one slowly, and it's been a real help on filling in some gaps I had in my knowledge.

  • @JoannaH Thank you. ^_^

  • @xin-li @Laura-Brown @NessIllustration I just discover the podcast section. That gonna help me a lot. ^_^

  • SVS OG

    @Jérémie-Lecompte hi, I don’t know how the instructors at Schoolism teach but they’re pros at their field and you best believe they know what they’re doing. @Will-Terry is a great guy but he specializes in illustration. ( No offense Will) That’s not exactly feature animation visual development. SVS will definitely help you with your fundamentals but along the line, you’re going to need a visual development mentor. Though similar to illustration, Visdev requires different a process and even a slightly different skill set all together. Perhaps you can ask @Jake-Parker on how to best prepare for this field. He worked in VIsdev for Blue Sky. Also ask @Lee-White since he also taught Visdev in college. Also, if you want to get a job in visdev, you need to build connections and what better way to start than to be friends with your teachers who are currently working in the industry. Don’t just focus your learning on SVS. You are free to learn in other schools as well. Use all the resources available to you.

  • @Nyrryl-Cadiz I think the only one I'd like to learn from is Nathan Fowkes on the Schoolism website. But for now, my budget does not allow me.

  • SVS OG

    @Jérémie-Lecompte you only like Nathan Fowkes’ class? That’s a shame. In my opinion, Schoolism is a treasure trove for Visdev students. Also, you could just get the monthly subscription if budget is tight but that depends on you.

    You seem to be interested in a lot of art fields. You mentioned that children’s book illustration is your dream at the same time you want to get into visdev for the stability. Perhaps it’s best if you polish your fundamentals for now while researching what goes into each field, what skills are needed, and what’s expected from you by your potential clients. And hopefully, you can make the decision later in the future.

  • A littles paintings I did today.




  • 007

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