Monday, 21 February 2011

Things I does...

I've never worked in a proper sense, and always thought id never done anything beneficial or good with my art or whatever. But thinking about it, I do quite a few things that could be considered as experience or go towards aiding my future.
They are as follows-

Do ALOT of personal artwork-
Constantly illustrating and producing artwork to further expand on skills and develop my style. I illustrate my own ideas and concept aswell as producing 'fanart', based upon books, games and film that inspire me. The later opening me up to different styles as well as refining mine by looking deeper into stylization etc.

Produce artwork for other people-
I work alongside indie game designers to produce artwork for use in their games, 'clients' have approached me for use in RPG Maker games, iphone games as well as general use. [for 'Zesty Monsters' my collection of monster graphics for free use in whatever.] I also produce minor request work [free commissions basically] for fanart or other works of art.
I will be expanding my 'uses' into general game art for the Indie Game community soon, producing concept work for Visual Novels, and title screens etc/character art for other games.

Work[ed] alongside other artists-
I used to work with a small group on DeviantART, creating an animation entitled 'Zakuro Sketch.' I had to pull out due to college work and my skills weren't as developed in terms of working as a background artist.
Id love to rework on this project as it was a good opportunity to work with fellow artists,  and build up relations.
I also work alongside others on the Indie Game scene.

Work out achievable art projects for primary school pupils-
I help my mum with working out achievable art projects for he pupil to produce at the school she works at. I come up with ideas for art, and produce mock-ups to help give the children a sense that the work is achievable and to provide inspirations for them.
At the moment I dont have time to aid my mum with teaching the pupils or working with them on the projects, but its something i may look into. Providing a little experience of teaching in an art field.

These things may not stand up to physical work, and it is all free work. But it does give me experience of working with unprofessional clients [which can sometimes be very hard to work with], and it goes towards developing my skills as an illustrator and what i want to do with my future.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Job Profiles

Illustrator Job Profile-

Illustrators combine art, design and creative skills to develop ideas and produce original visual images for a wide range of products including books, magazines, animations, computer games, websites, sales brochures and reference materials.
An illustrator should-
  • have excellent drawing and IT skills
  • be able to work to a brief and adapt their style if needed
  • have an understanding of the context in which they are working
  • know the audience they are aiming at
  • be able to conduct good research
  • have a high level of creativity and an eye for detail and design
  • have good communication and negotiation skills
  • be able to work within budgets
  • be self-motivated and able to work to deadlines
  • have a good general knowledge and an awareness of current affairs
  • have good initiative.

Illustrators work throughout the UK. Most illustrators are self-employed and often have other paid jobs while they build up their business. It is a competitive area of work.
Many illustrators employ agents to promote their work and pay a percentage commission for their services. Many illustrators also have a web presence to promote their work. There are also websites that allow illustrators to upload their work for potential commissioners to see, often for a fee.

There are no set entry requirements to become an illustrator. However, most professional illustrators have a degree in illustration or another art-related subject such as graphic design or fine art. It is important to have a high level of illustration ability, an extensive portfolio of quality work and self-promotional skills to obtain work. Getting work experience through an internship in a relevant field such as advertising or publishing may help.

Most illustrators are self-employed and work freelance. They are paid an agreed fee for each commission, which varies widely. Earnings may range from £5,000 to £50,000 a year. Some extremely successful illustrators may earn £250,000 a year or more.


[‘illustrator’ is a broad term, and I feel at the moment that it is defiantly where I want to go. The earnings are very uncertain, but that dosen’t effect me decision. I believe I have enough skills and determination to mean that this is a suitable job for me.]

Animator Job Profile-

As an animator, you would bring drawings or models to life on screen. Your work could be used in animated short and full-length films, television cartoons, adverts, computer games, music videos, websites and movie visual effects.
Skills Necessary-
  • creativity and imagination
  • good drawing or modelling skills
  • patience and concentration
  • accuracy and attention to detail
  • good computer skills, preferably including graphics and animation software
  • communication and presentation skills
  • the ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
  • good teamworking skills.
Income can start at around £20,000 a year, but with experience and skills one can earn up to £40,000 a year.
To become an animator, you will need skills in drawing, modelling or using computer animation packages. Some animators are self-taught, but many start by taking an animation or art-related course to develop their skills before looking for work.
You can get into the industry with qualifications in relevant subjects such as:
  • illustration
  • graphic design
  • computer programming
  • model making or sculpture
  • 3-D design
  • multimedia design.

[An animator would be a really interesting career to look further into, I would need to work with some of the 3d modelling and animation programs first as I have no experience at all. If i were to go into animation, maybe an animation specific course would be a good Idea. Apart from the technology side of things, I feel it could be very achievable and the income looks good. So maybe its a good career to go down?]

Higher education lecturer job description-

Higher education (HE) lecturers facilitate learning and carry out research activities in universities and some colleges of further education (FE). They teach academic or vocational subjects to undergraduate and postgraduate students aged 18 upwards. Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical laboratory demonstrations, field work and e-learning. Multimedia technologies are increasingly used.
Most HE lecturers pursue their own areas of research and develop these in order to contribute to the wider research activities of their department/institution.
Administrative tasks take up a significant part of the working day. Many lecturers also take on a pastoral role with their students. As HE lecturers progress along their career paths, they may be expected to undertake a managerial role.
Work activities vary according to individual areas of responsibility and research. Progression to managerial posts will also have an impact on work responsibilities.
Tasks typically involve-

  • §  developing and implementing new methods of teaching to reflect changes in research;
  • §  designing, preparing and developing teaching materials;
  • §  delivering lectures, seminars and tutorials;
  • §  assessing students' coursework;
  • §  setting and marking examinations;
  • §  supporting students through a pastoral/advisory role;
  • §  undertaking personal research projects and actively contributing to the institution’s research profile;
  • §  writing up research and preparing it for publication;
  • §  supervising students’ research activities;
  • §  undertaking continuous professional development (CPD) and participating in staff training activities;
  • §  undertaking administrative tasks related to the department, such as student admissions, induction programmes and involvement in committees and boards;
  • §  managing and supervising staff - at a senior level this may include the role of head of department;
  • §  representing the institution at professional conferences and seminars, and contributing to these as necessary;
  • §  establishing collaborative links outside the university with industrial, commercial and public organisations.

Salaries for higher education (HE) lecturers range from £30,500 - £40,000+ (salary data collected June 2009).
Although this area of work is open to all graduates, undergraduate and doctoral degrees relevant to the post are required, along with:
§  demonstrable experience of (or clear potential for) teaching;
§  the ability to produce original research for peers;
§  early publication of academic work.

Entry without a degree is not possible.
Entry without a PhD (or nearing completion of a PhD) is difficult. However, for more vocational or specialised courses, expertise in the relevant field may be just as valuable as a PhD.
[Ive always wanted to teach to older students, and teaching higher education has become more recently a good idea. I think it would make sense to maybe consider this later in my career, when maybe have the money and its is the right time to further my own education and further better my chances of working as a HE lecturer.]

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Second thoughts..

Ive always thought id do a degree [in this case illustration] then immediatly afterwards, train to be a teacher, teaching some form of art in further education.
Yet im having seconds thoughts and im not quite sure what i want to be doing straight after my illustration degree. Id love to teach at some point in my future, but i dont think I want to just yet.
Its a case of seeing whats about and seeing what comes up in the next few years. Hopefully something nice will come along, but its probably best to set things in motion now.
I need to have a think...

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Attack of the bored Platypus

I just about got my head around illustrator, and making images souly with it. [ie, no photoshop or handrawn nonsense]...
Its my Platypus of Andy's Ark, and hes rather bored bless him.
I love the clean look you get with using Illustrator, think im going to use it alot more in the future. =D

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Disney Interactive Internship

Potential Work Placement Idea-

Disney Interactive Studios UK are offering an internship placement program for 12 month placements to 2nd year undergraduate students who have an interest in the video game industry, and are equipped with the right skills to work alongside our London based production team.  
Targets students are those with a strong interest in games, animation, film making or art and design, and would like to work as Creatives at Disney Interactive Studios. 

Key responsibilities-

  • Ability to create high quality presentations, videos, concept at and storyboards.
  • Assist in developments and communication of Ideas
  • Evaluate games in development. 
Experience required- 
  • Studying an Art/Design/Multimedia degree 
  • Good visual communication skills
  • Proven competence in at least one of the following- Photoshop, Flash and Video editing software.
  • Knowledge of Powerpoint, Microsoft word and Outlook
Personal Attributes-
  • Must be comfortable with working on their own and as a team. 
  • Must be creative and be able to communicate ideas within a group. 
  • Be motivated and enthusiastic. 

This would be a great opportunity to do as it is something that I find really exciting and am really interested in. I feel I have enough experience and enough of the skills I would need to apply, however it isn't something I would be interested in at this current time. I dont feel I have enough confidence to push myself out there yet and be more independent.
It is definitely something to remember for the future though! [Near future that is] 

Why choose illustration as a career?

 I’ve always loved art, and particularly loved flicking through pictures books and encyclopaedias since a young age, digesting the illustrations more than the words in most cases. I simple love to draw, and have been doing it all my life, so to pursue a future in this field has always been an aspiration of mine.

 I constantly find inspiration from books, games, film and music, being subconsciously influenced and filling my head with ideas for illustrations. It seems natural for me to read a book for example and instantly draw characters or scenes from it, expanding upon these to create my own narrative to spin off from the original texts. You could say that illustration comes naturally and i find it a great hoppy as well as a career prospect.

 At the moment it is only a hoppy, and although I do free commissions for people on internet forum and work alongside indie game makers [people like myself, creating low-tech video games], making custom artworks and illustrations, i don’t produce work for money. The thought of actually gaining an income from something that I take to be a pastime and something I find effortless, is very appealing.

 I would like to pursue a career in teaching [preferably lecturing illustration or teaching art] and have freelance illustration as a secondary income, but there are many different careers within illustration that I could lend my hand to leaving me a wide choice of jobs should my plan not work out.

 Other fields that interest are animation or game design. Ive always dreamed of seeing my drawing, animated, and I already dip into game design, as i said before, working with indie game makers and producing artwork for my own game designing exploits. Illustration is a rich world for me, with many paths to go down.

 Another aspect of illustration I have, is working with clients [free work] and the enjoyment i get from receiving a brief, working on an illustration and seeing the excitement and happiness it brings the client is really gratifying and really gives me a boost of confidence about myself and my work. Illustration can be appreciated and viewed by everyone, so there is defiantly and client base out there, and an audience to acknowledge your work.

 Id like to think that in my future, ill make an impact on society in some form and help people, so aiming for a career in illustration and/or teaching of it, will no doubt do that. Be it sharing my knowledge and ideas with students or bringing stories to life and aiding advertising with images etc.

 However, it is apparent that illustration is a tough world, and it can be hard to get yourself known, but through hard work and networking its possible to get big clients and lots of acknowledgment. The strife and thought of achieving that is highly appealing, and I sense the achievement of doing so is great, making my future an exciting prospect.
In short, Illustration is my life, and always have been. To continue doing what I love till I can’t do it anymore is more than I could ask for in life, and would make me very happy.