Over the years my art has evolved and expanded. When I first started out, I experimented with different styles and techniques until I found what worked best for me – a process which has taken years. The result was a large body of work suitable for a variety of uses and applications. Additionally, I’ve created humorous art, which can be more involved than cartoon art. So what should I do with all this art? I’m putting it to work.
My fellow artists may agree or disagree with this approach, but I find it most manageable for me to present my work in it’s own venue. With the nearly innumerable free and easy website creation tools out there, it doesn’t take long, it increases your visibility, and as a business, you can track it’s value to you as a separate and individual entity. Why should you consider this? While you may not be enamored of your earlier work, others may find it useful for their needs, and may be willing to pay you for it’s use. If it’s not visible to the world, it has zero chance of serving you.
My main site is Bill Abbott Cartoons, which is primarily for my syndicated comic, “Spectickles”, but I provide links to my other work as well. This site is always evolving as I try to make my work more accessible and in turn, my job easier. At some point in the future, I’d like to have all of the thousands of “Spectickles” cartoons available on the site to be used for newsletters, Powerpoints, websites – you name it – and make the cost of use inexpensive and super easy, but that’s a little way down the road.
Something I’d started relatively recently as a creative break from “Spectickles” was my business cartoons, which I call, “Percenters”. It’s drawn more simply in black and white line art (although the option for color versions is available as was the cartoon sold to Prospect magazine in the UK), and allows me to write in a much different style and approach.
A large body of earlier work of mine has been retooled and made available as “Pandemonium”, which was first published in Reader’s Digest magazine. They were created with traditional India ink and dip pens on Bristol board, some with cross-hatching shading techniques, and some with ink wash. There’s about 150 cartoons in this style, and with some color and formatting, they’re suitable for a host of uses.
At various times in the past, I’ve been asked to create more complex humorous illustrations for companies and businesses. I really enjoy this type of work and look forward to opportunities to do more in the future. In the meantime, I’ve created a small portfolio site (CHECK IT OUT) where it can be viewed, and perhaps attract additional business.
Keep in mind, this is one man’s approach – there are many, equally valid methods to present your work and capitalize on your artistic endeavors, but for me, this works best. Since each of these cartoon and illustration sites serve different potential markets, keeping each as it’s own vehicle allows me to present them in the most effective way I can to those who might find value in them. For instance, “Spectickles” isn’t entirely suitable for the Wall Street Journal, nor is “Percenters” ideally suited for Reader’s Digest.
The bottom line: if you’ve got lots of art socked away that remains marketable – maybe with a little tweaking – why not get it out there? Worst case scenario is it doesn’t earn anything. But what if the right person sees it at the right time? That old portfolio moldering in the closet or attic just might open all new doors.