The webcomics blog about webcomics

Valuable Resources

Here’s some fine folks that want to help you make your life in the creative end of things just a bit easier. They’re great.

  • Katie Lane¹ reported t’other day that her How To Read A Contract free e-course got an overwhelming response from fine people such as yourself. So overwhelming, in fact, that it broke the email system she’s using to deliver the lessons. It took a day or so to resolve, but the emails are going out now, and Lesson One is a counterintuitive doozy.

    For a course on How To Read A Contract, it seems a little weird to start by saying don’t read the contract yet; however, readers that are familiar with Lane may recall that her chief objective in contracts is to reach a place of mutual understanding. The key to that is to first understand yourself and what you want the contract to reflect. So before you read it, think hard on what it is you want to see in the contract — what terms, what guarantees, what understanding.

    Only after you have that worked out do you have the framework to evaluate if the contract reflects what you want the agreement to be. Then you’re in a position to say This is not going to work for me, where do we go from here? Focusing on the language of the contract too soon means you’re already dealing solely on the terms and conditions that whoever wrote the contract considers important, which may not address everything you find to be important. It’s a neat way to look at things, and I’m guessing that the next lessons will build on it.

  • On a related note, those that follow the small press that serves independent creators will be familiar with Koyama Press and its founder, Annie Koyama. She’s got her own opinions on how creators need to develop business skills and the ability to evaluate contracts and proposals; to help them protect themselves, she’s looking to hold a Toronto-area workshop along those lines:

    I’d like to gauge interest in holding a 2 hour workshop with a pro at KP headquarters to teach artists some of these basics. A full course is taught at OCADU and Sheridan College so if you are enrolled in those courses, this is not for you.

    It would be a one time thing unless there was a ton of interest to follow up with other topics. Probably to occur in late fall.

    Preference would be given to KP published artists initially but anyone is invited to attend.

    If there is enough interest, say ten people, Koyama Press would subsidize the cost and the artists could attend free of charge. If more than ten people wanted to attend, I’d look at repeating the event later.

    If interested, please comment here and send me an quick email at: anne at koyamapress dot-com. Thanks!

    The comment here bit refers to the Facebook posting, where she’s posted in the past hour that there’s definitely enough interest and the workshop will take place. But! All communications about the workshop and logistics will be email-only, so if you want to attend be sure to drop her a line. Anybody that attends, do let the rest of us know how it goes.

  • Hey, you know who’s great? Lucy Bellwood (Adventure Cartoonist!), that’s who. I don’t know if you followed her artist’s residency in Iceland on Twitter earlier this month, but there were many majestic vistas featured, and more than a few really lovely paintings that she shared². But consider: a berth on a tall ship (or even a modern research vessel) may only offer a very small space for stowage and personal belongings; trekking across the blasted heath of Iceland, you ain’t carrying a full Cintiq rig with you (and there’s no place to plug it in if you did).

    So how art? Today, she’s done a writeup of how she manages to go to the far ends of the land and water and get all of the visual sketching and painting and such done; it’s at her Patreon, but it’s open for anybody to read:

    There’s a lot of bluster around asking artists about their tools. On the one hand, newer artists can become needlessly hung up on shortcuts, prying into artists’ toolkits to try and find the Magic Paintbrush that will grant them the power they desire. (Bad news: it doesn’t exist.) On the other hand, asking about people’s tools is a GREAT way to discover new materials and techniques.

    When I think about tools I picked up because artists I admire used them (Windsor and Newton Series 7 No. 2 Sable Brushes, Pentel Pocketbrush, etc.) I realize that they were neat to learn from, but ultimately didn’t stick around. When I found something that really worked for my tendencies and preferences (Kuretake’s felt-tip brush pen, for example) it felt right. However, like choosing a college major or a life path, that rightness is generally only attainable after a LOT of experimentation! [emphasis original]

    Her conclusion: trial and error is how you put together your travel art kit, but she’s helpfully included hers. It’s pretty compact! I’m guessing that all the stuff she’s included is super-neat for artists to ooh and ahh over, but I’m not qualified to judge. I can tell, though, that the tone of the post is pretty identical to when I talk about emergency kits with fellow EMTs and we have Opinions; whatever the tools of your trade, there’s always that discussion to have.

    Oh, and in case you think that your art isn’t good enough, regardless of the kit/tools/travel/whatever? She’s got you covered there. Punch your inner demons in the face when self-doubt strikes.

Current fundraising for Houston total: US$150
Come on, people! We’ve stalled since yesterday.

Spam of the day:

We are ready to offer a free accomplishment of written work hoping for further cooperation and honest feedback about our service.

Here’s my feedback: I have no idea what you’re trying to say by offer a free accomplishment of written work. I will not be buying the writing services of people who cannot write clearly.

¹ Light-ning Law-yer!! I need to write a macro to set up that footnote automatically.

² There were also boats.

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