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Artists Meeting Writers, Writers Meeting Aritsts

ZephyrTRZephyrTR Registered User regular
edited June 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm a relatively talented writer. I wish to make a comic book. I have little talent as an illustrator.

I'm looking for trees in a forest, and I am lost. Does anyone know meet-up groups or online communities where creative minds can link up? Do you know wanted-walls for commissioning/hiring artists? I have a story, I'm itching to tell it, it can't be a novel -- I need an illustrator, a partner really who I can work alongside closely. I live in NYC -- there has to be something out there that I've just not heard of before.

[edited for expanded query, word count]

ZephyrTR on

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    PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited June 2009
    Most folks who can draw and are even vaguely interested in making a comic book will be much more interested in writing it themselves than they will be in working for free for a writer who can't draw. Hiring an artist to execute your vision typically takes money, unless you have a good buddy who draws and really likes your writing or knows that they personally cannot write and has a lot of free time.

    Also, why does it have to be a comic book and not a novel? If you can't draw, you should probably be practicing and working in a medium where it's not necessary. If you can't express your ideas clearly with words alone, you're never going to get anywhere even with an artist, because artists aren't typically mindreaders.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
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    TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Writing is the easy part. Generally comic artists want to work on their own stuff.

    TychoCelchuuu on
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    ZephyrTRZephyrTR Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    A story cannot be anything one wants it to be, and be the best it could. There's certain mediums that lend themselves to certain stories -- I've written so much, but this story just isn't meant to be a verbal telling. It needs strong, stylized visuals just as much as it needs strong, humanistic dialogue.

    Where are there places perhaps to post JOB offers for artists, then? I'm not rich but I'm not poor. I could possibly hire somebody.

    Writing's cheap, but endless amounts of comics are made with the junkiest of plot and dialogue -- and the better the artwork the more heartbreaking it is. Is Tycho not just as important as Gabe? Am I the only one who feels this?

    I've met so many artists that have no direction on WHAT to draw, but we didn't sync up. I need to find my artist, just as my artists needs to find me. I swear, it's on the tip of my tongue; there's some website for me to go to, some forum.

    ZephyrTR on
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    SentrySentry Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    No. Artists are not just sitting around thinking "gee, I wish someone would tell me what to draw, then I'd be complete."

    I won't say writing is easy, but chances are, if you can draw, you're creative enough to have your own vision. As Pheezer said, if you have a friend (like Gabe and Tycho were BEFORE Penny Arcade) you might have an awesome team up.

    Sentry on
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    wrote:
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    'Fuck yeah, me too. What little kid ever pretended to be part of the lynch-mob?'
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    noir_bloodnoir_blood Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    You might want to tone down on your ego, as already I'm turned off by it, so I can't imagine actually having to work with you.

    Anyways, if you're truly serious about finding an artist, be prepared to pay. Most writer/artist teams start off with the people already knowing each other and working on a common idea. It strikes me that you just want someone to draw your supposed masterpiece.

    noir_blood on
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    ZephyrTRZephyrTR Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Sentry, I kind of disagree. I know many writers and artists who can often have talent but no direction. I am -- for many months out of the year -- one of them. I, for one, would be perfectly fine writing dialogue and fine-tuning plot for an artist's story. I've done this before, in fact. I was just hoping there were collaboration sites out there -- it didn't seem very far fetched at all.

    But let's not derail. If there's nowhere to collaborate without money involved -- were I to HIRE someone, where can I go? What kind of legal ramifications come into paying an artist for something like this? If you are an artist yourself -- ballpark rates for 5 page color treatments?

    ZephyrTR on
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    TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    When I said writing is easy, I wasn't denigrating it or you or anything. I'm a writer. I've even written comics. Just use your common sense, though: it takes me a quarter of a second to type "a pirate ship" and that pirate ship is going to take hours to draw. Artists are not leaping over each other to draw other peoples' stories.

    Hiring's a better question and I would perhaps go ask in the questions thread of the Artist's Corner; people there may have done commissions before.

    TychoCelchuuu on
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    DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    When I said writing is easy, I wasn't denigrating it or you or anything. I'm a writer. I've even written comics. Just use your common sense, though: it takes me a quarter of a second to type "a pirate ship" and that pirate ship is going to take hours to draw. Artists are not leaping over each other to draw other peoples' stories.

    Hiring's a better question and I would perhaps go ask in the questions thread of the Artist's Corner; people there may have done commissions before.

    Well, it absolutely is denigrating to say "writing is the easy part." Sure, if you compare writing "a pirate ship" to drawing a pirate ship, writing "a pirate ship" is a lot easier, but you don't need to be a writer to write "a pirate ship." Your analogy is invalid. Drawing a believable pirate ship is more akin to a writer describing a pirate ship in text so it has a believable and vivid texture for the reader. It's an invalid comparison because no (good) piece of fiction (or non-fiction, for that matter) is going to have "a pirate ship" as solitary text to denote a pirate ship, and leave it at that. The writer's job and the graphic artist's job have an equivalent level of difficulty, given an equivalent medium, in conveying the image.

    Perhaps you meant "writing is a minimal part of writing a comic"? I've never written a comic, but that argument might have more merit than the haphazard one you've offered in this thread.

    Drez on
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    PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited June 2009
    If the concept can't be effectively translated to any format other than a comic book, it's probably because the writer can't properly express himself in words alone. To that extent, a writer whose work requires pictures to illustrate it and make it interesting is probably contributing far less in terms of time or effort than the artist involved is.

    EDIT:
    Used the wrong word, speaking of shit writers.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
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    DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Pheezer wrote: »
    If the concept can't be effectively translated to any format other than a comic book, it's probably because the writer can't probably express himself in words alone. To that extent, a writer whose work requires pictures to illustrate it and make it interesting is probably contributing far less in terms of time or effort than the artist involved is.

    Which is most likely true, and possibly what TychoCelchuuu meant, but not at all what he said. I agree with you, however.

    Drez on
    Switch: SW-7690-2320-9238Steam/PSN/Xbox: Drezdar
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    Dark_SideDark_Side Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Random guess? I'd probably start by posting a craigslist ad, seems as good a place as any and it's free. Beyond that I think you would probably have to do some work either learning to draw comics and getting involved in a community of artists before you got someone interested enough to team up with you, or just hanging around said communities until you make a few good friends.

    Just listen to the PA podcasts, even though Gabe draws and Tycho writes, they both work together developing the concept, and really that's what makes the entire comic anyway.

    Dark_Side on
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    TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Drez wrote: »
    When I said writing is easy, I wasn't denigrating it or you or anything. I'm a writer. I've even written comics. Just use your common sense, though: it takes me a quarter of a second to type "a pirate ship" and that pirate ship is going to take hours to draw. Artists are not leaping over each other to draw other peoples' stories.

    Hiring's a better question and I would perhaps go ask in the questions thread of the Artist's Corner; people there may have done commissions before.

    Well, it absolutely is denigrating to say "writing is the easy part." Sure, if you compare writing "a pirate ship" to drawing a pirate ship, writing "a pirate ship" is a lot easier, but you don't need to be a writer to write "a pirate ship." Your analogy is invalid. Drawing a believable pirate ship is more akin to a writer describing a pirate ship in text so it has a believable and vivid texture for the reader. It's an invalid comparison because no (good) piece of fiction (or non-fiction, for that matter) is going to have "a pirate ship" as solitary text to denote a pirate ship, and leave it at that. The writer's job and the graphic artist's job have an equivalent level of difficulty, given an equivalent medium, in conveying the image.

    Perhaps you meant "writing is a minimal part of writing a comic"? I've never written a comic, but that argument might have more merit than the haphazard one you've offered in this thread.
    I guess what I meant to say is writing is less time consuming. It's not about difficulty, really, it's about supply and demand. Mr. Writer here wants to find artists to draw his words for him. There's a reason there are a lot of writers looking for people to draw comics for them and not a lot of artists looking for people to write comics for them: the time commitment for the artist is ridiculous, and the time commitment for the writer is "oh gosh I have 8 stories which of them do you want a script for?"

    TychoCelchuuu on
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    PheezerPheezer Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited June 2009
    Drez wrote: »
    When I said writing is easy, I wasn't denigrating it or you or anything. I'm a writer. I've even written comics. Just use your common sense, though: it takes me a quarter of a second to type "a pirate ship" and that pirate ship is going to take hours to draw. Artists are not leaping over each other to draw other peoples' stories.

    Hiring's a better question and I would perhaps go ask in the questions thread of the Artist's Corner; people there may have done commissions before.

    Well, it absolutely is denigrating to say "writing is the easy part." Sure, if you compare writing "a pirate ship" to drawing a pirate ship, writing "a pirate ship" is a lot easier, but you don't need to be a writer to write "a pirate ship." Your analogy is invalid. Drawing a believable pirate ship is more akin to a writer describing a pirate ship in text so it has a believable and vivid texture for the reader. It's an invalid comparison because no (good) piece of fiction (or non-fiction, for that matter) is going to have "a pirate ship" as solitary text to denote a pirate ship, and leave it at that. The writer's job and the graphic artist's job have an equivalent level of difficulty, given an equivalent medium, in conveying the image.

    Perhaps you meant "writing is a minimal part of writing a comic"? I've never written a comic, but that argument might have more merit than the haphazard one you've offered in this thread.
    I guess what I meant to say is writing is less time consuming. It's not about difficulty, really, it's about supply and demand. Mr. Writer here wants to find artists to draw his words for him. There's a reason there are a lot of writers looking for people to draw comics for them and not a lot of artists looking for people to write comics for them: the time commitment for the artist is ridiculous, and the time commitment for the writer is "oh gosh I have 8 stories which of them do you want a script for?"

    That's not ENTIRELY fair, but it's less insulting than your first post.

    Either way, most people who are artists are artists because they're highly creative. Most highly creative people with the determination necessary to become a skilled artist can pound out a reasonable narrative, even if it's nothing special.

    OP, work in the short story or novel format. Get something GOOD written. Get something published in a magazine at least. If you're published and you find an artist between projects, you'll have an easier time convincing said artist to work with you.

    You are not going to have any luck without having some establishment as a good writer or enough money to pay someone to do as you say, though.

    Pheezer on
    IT'S GOT ME REACHING IN MY POCKET IT'S GOT ME FORKING OVER CASH
    CUZ THERE'S SOMETHING IN THE MIDDLE AND IT'S GIVING ME A RASH
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    KendeathwalkerKendeathwalker Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Best place for you to get in touch with artists online, propably the jobs section in sights like deviant art, conceptart.org, e-lance, etc.

    You live in NYC.. Go to the comic con hosted annually at the javits center and walk down artists alley. Post on craigslist.

    This being your first comic.. you should defintely come to the table willing to pay a respectable page rate and be flexible and open to suggestion.

    To give you a frame of reference regarding page rate.. For pencils Marvel pays between 110.00 and 120.00 per page. This includes lay outs to final pencils. No it does not matter how many panels are on the page.

    Ink and color varies more but Inkers get somewhere in the neighborhood of 80-90 and colorists 50-60.

    These are just numbers that Ive been quoted in the past and heard from fellow artists.

    Drawing a comic is a lot of work. A lot.

    Kendeathwalker on
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    Captain VashCaptain Vash Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    This thread is total deja vu? didn't it already happen.

    wait, yes it did... here you go:
    http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showthread.php?t=15998&highlight=artist%2C+writer

    Captain Vash on
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    SentrySentry Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    This thread is total deja vu? didn't it already happen.

    wait, yes it did... here you go:
    http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showthread.php?t=15998&highlight=artist%2C+writer

    This thread happens all the time. And it's ALWAYS a totally awesome writer just looking for an artist to bring his vision to life (for free).

    Sentry on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    wrote:
    When I was a little kid, I always pretended I was the hero,' Skip said.
    'Fuck yeah, me too. What little kid ever pretended to be part of the lynch-mob?'
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    mullymully Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Fact: If you aren't willing to pay, and you don't have a friend that is willing to help, you will either:

    a) End up with someone who has very little talent and will not be able to give you what you really want,
    b) End up with someone who refuses to do things the way you'd like to do them, and takes their own spin
    or
    c) Does a few pages and then quits when they tire of it.

    I know this because I know people who have tried to get artists for their comics. And the same thing happens. Repeatedly.

    Even 10 dollars a page -- super, SUPER cheap -- but you'd be getting someone who feels their work is worth something, and they'd have initiative to go on with it. Maybe a student or something. Certainly wouldn't be top of the line (personally I'd be starting at 50$ per page, minimum) but it would be more than what you have now.

    And you should be willing to invest in gathering the right materials to make your story come to life -- an artist would be one of those materials.

    mully on
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    IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited June 2009
    If the story is your baby, and you just want to pay top dollar and have someone follow your instruction, I suggest the rates that Kendeathwalker described, and posting on CA.org in their jobs listing section. They have a Non-paying listing if you want to try your luck.

    Partnerships like Gabe and Tycho aren't usually formed from job listing. That's a creative process that is hinged on comfort, equality in input, and creative chemistry. You'd need tot befriend some artists, essentially pitch your story, and then be ready for it to be a back and forth between your original concept and what the artist brings to the table.

    Iruka on
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    RazielRaziel Registered User regular
    edited June 2009
    Unfortunately this is kind of the bullshit part of the comics industry. Writing may not be easier (fuck you, by the way), but it's certainly less time-consuming than penciling, inking, colouring, and lettering 20 pages.

    On top of that, pretty much any asshole can string a couple sentences together and liberally sprinkle sound effects across a bunch of panels. Bad writing can be forgiven by great art; the inverse is not usually true.

    Therefore, if you want a good artist, you are going to have to pay, and hope that your comic makes enough money to offset that.

    Failing that, you're going to have to get in contact with a comics publisher and submit a proposal for your script. If they like it, they'll set you up with an artist.

    Raziel on
    Read the mad blog-rantings of a manic hack writer here.

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