Friday, April 9, 2010

My 25th

Today I celebrate my silver anniversary of freelancing. On April 9, 1985 I began working full-time as a freelancer with little more than a drawing table, a sketch pad, some paint, a couple of brushes, pens and pencils, and a few sheets of illustration board. Freelance life wasn't as complicated back then -- no computer, no cell phone, less competition. My first real assignment was cover art for The Pennywhistle Press, a children's Sunday newspaper supplement published by the Gannett Company.

It hasn't been easy and I haven't made a whole lot of money, but I've sure had a lot of fun creating stuff over the years. And I'm very grateful for my wonderful wife and daughter and all the friends who have been so supportive over the years. So here's to twenty-five more years (I'll need at least that many before I can afford to retire!)

Back in 1985...

* All art samples were sent by "snail" mail. At 22 cents, first-class stamps were a bargain.
* There were no color copiers so you had to send original art, slides or photographs as samples.
* At about $10,000, a "graphics" computer was out of the question for a starving artist.
* Fax machines and mobile phones existed, but were also prohibitively expensive.
* I often worked in black and white for many assignments because color was too expensive to print for many companies. And when color was indicated, it was often just spot color and had to be separated by hand using Rubylith.

Visit my website to see some of the artwork I've created over the years.

4 comments:

Ginger*:) said...

Here's to another 25 and more! What a great article to go along with this delightful illustration. Some of what you mentioned I think others of us have experienced.
For me it was the AD at Harper Collins who asked me in a personal one on one interview...Can you do a color separation?

We live in a world that is quickly changing, but one thing that will keep it fresh is new art coming from inspired artists like you and all the Picture Bookies.

Mundo Mundaca said...

Happy Birthday!have a beautiful weekend....with love a lot.!

Hugs,
yasmin

Scott said...

Well stated. I started in 1987 so your points really hit home for me.

Vanessa Brantley Newton said...

This is wonderful!! Happy Anniversary!!! Wow how awesome! I know that your family must be so very proud of you. You are an inspiration indeed!